Daily Graphic Novel Recommendation 89

The Return Of The Honey Buzzard

by Aimée de Jongh
160 pages
Genre notes: bookstores, suicide, regret
ISBN: 1910593168 (Amazon)

De Jongh, loosely inspired by Lord Of The Flies (such that two main characters are named Simon and Ralf), weaves together a story of a bookseller-by-duty has to re-evaluate his guilt over an experience in his youth.

Simon is trying not to sell his father's bookshop to a chain but is being buried in debt by not selling. He never even wanted to run the shop but feels he owes it to his father's memory. His wife is trying to be understanding, but they're going broke. Simon runs into a pretty college student who needs book-help and that begins part of his journey. He witnesses a middle-aged woman stand on the tracks and wait a couple minutes to be killed by a train and does nothing but call to her. He remembers his childhood with a bullied friend in elementary school.

Shame, responsibility, hope, culpability, imagination.

And along the way, he talks about the strange nature of the honey buzzard. It's De Jongh's first published graphic novel in the US and proves the Dutch woman a talent to watch. Her art reminds of Nate Powell's. Lovely work.

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