Daily Graphic Novel Recommendation 92

Sacred Heart

by Liz Suburbia
Genre notes: teenagers, chaos, faith
312 pages
ISBN: 1606998412 (Amazon)

Everybody's gone to the rapture. All the adults at any rate. And the kids? They're alright.

Sacred Heart was phenomenal. It was like reading Roberto Bolaño fish together a comic about American teenagers and rapture cults. It was chaotic and haunted and full of life. It's a brutal, mysterious book and really embodies the kind of visceral realism Bolaño introduces in Savage Detectives. It also carries the apocalyptic kind of vibe from 2666. Suburbia's pacing was magnificent and the slowburn of discovering what is actually happening is delectable. I loved the way she would sometimes punctuate each cell of a montage with onomatopoeia.

Suburbia's illustration of music was so so so much better than anything else I've seen in the field. Scott Pilgrim has this sort of wobbly ghost electricity rising like incense from the instruments and that's okay. Jem has these crisp, sterile pink streams that swirl around and ghost through everything, but it always feels electric but soulless. (Which is fine because Jem is all about corporate pop anyway.) In Sacred Heart music has this physicality. It bombards and punches and people get swept up in it and get out of its way.

It's a book you won't entirely get, but it's a book that's forceful in conveying its unique vision. This is what YA fiction would look like if YA wasn't written for preteens. Sex, drugs, rock-n-roll, and more religion than you can shake a holy relic at.

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