One of the most eagerly anticipated graphic memoirs of recent years, Fun Home is a darkly funny family tale, pitch-perfectly illustrated with Alison Bechdel's sweetly gothic drawings. Like Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis, it's a story exhilaratingly suited to graphic memoir form. Meet Alison's father, a historic preservation expert and obsessive restorer of the family's Victorian home, a third-generation funeral home director, a high-school English teacher, an icily distant parent, and a closeted homosexual who, as it turns ...
One of the most eagerly anticipated graphic memoirs of recent years, Fun Home is a darkly funny family tale, pitch-perfectly illustrated with Alison Bechdel's sweetly gothic drawings. Like Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis, it's a story exhilaratingly suited to graphic memoir form. Meet Alison's father, a historic preservation expert and obsessive restorer of the family's Victorian home, a third-generation funeral home director, a high-school English teacher, an icily distant parent, and a closeted homosexual who, as it turns out, is involved with his male students and the family babysitter. Through narrative that is alternately heartbreaking and fiercely funny, we are drawn into a daughter's complex yearning for her father. When Alison comes out as homosexual herself in late adolescence, the denouement is swift, graphic, and redemptive.
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Bechdel is an amazing graphic novelist--in Fun Home, she showcases all of the idiosyncrasies of family life while developing characters that are real rather than (ironically?) cartoonish as one might expect in a graphic novel.
Apr 3, 2007
A Life in Words and Pictures
Bechdel, best known for her "Dykes to Watch Out For" comic strip, truly shines in this fascinating story of her growing up in a highly less-than-all-American family. While I was never a devoted fan of DTWOF, she won me over in this wonderfully sustained narrative about an artist in a house full of messed up artists. At the core of the story is her attempt to come to terms with her talented, distant father----a study in contradictions, emotional selfishness and sexual confusion. The artist has much rich material to mine here, and she is fully up to the task. Her confident illustration style and storytelling gifts combine to make this one of the best graphic memoirs around.
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