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Persepolis I & II by Marjane Satrapi is the first graphic novel that I've read. I've skimmed through others, but this one I actually read cover to cover. It's a fascinating way to tell a story. Being a fan of cinema I found this format provided a bridge between a traditional novel and a movie. The fact that all of the drawings are done in black and white I found enhanced the story since most of the material is somber.

Given the heightened fear among Americans of terrorism the story is wonderful in helping to view an "Axis of Evil" country in terms of its people. My knowledge of Iran is limited and this story helped me understand it better. It isn't presented in some idealized fashion but mixes the joys and despair that the author experienced during the revolution. In particular she makes many astute observations about the freer life she had compared to many of her compatriots and how that affected her world view.

Tags: books


I've long been interested in reading a graphic novel. Mostly, everytime I walk into Newbury comic to buy a gift or something I see a stack of them and remember some of the movies I've seen based on graphic novels. But I was never able to purchase one, because of 1) the comic book stigma (and I don't want to feel like a grade-schooler, nor that much of a nerd), or 2) becasue I've never had any idea which one to look at (and I've often said to myself, go look on Amazon to see which one is everyone's favorite. But the idea of a complex story and beautiful artwork has never staryed far. Maybe I'll go check this one out at lunchtime.