04 April, 2014

Susceptible by Genevieve Castree [Tim, Central]

Susceptible is a comic book filled with lots of little stories about a girl called Goglu. She grows up a little bit between one story and the next- in the beginning a small girl at the edge of early memory and by the end a teenager who is old enough to leave home. The book is about her being at the mercy of her childish parents and her struggle to understand the unfathomable way they act. I really like this one early story from when she is about five years old and she lives with her Mother and Father. She is sitting inside her house at night, looking out the window. Her Father sits outside on his motorcycle- the glow of the headlight is the main thing she can see. Then another motorcycle rides up with its headlight glowing and joins him and then her father rides away with it into the dark. And then after that Goglu and her mother live on their own. This is all quite plainly told and I like how Castree avoids explaining or complaining too much (‘Goglu’ is really Castree by another name so this ‘graphic novel’ is no work of fiction). Her drawings are beautiful and delicate and precise and cartoony all at the same time- they kind of remind me of Julie Doucet and Tove Jansson- and, along with the understated writing and mosaic-like structure, make Susceptible a book that I kept coming back to.
Title: Susceptible
Author: Genevieve Castree
Published: 2012
Publisher: Drawn and Quarterlyhttp://search.aucklandlibraries.govt.nz/?itemid=|library/marc/supercity-iii|b2806653

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