Sep 24, 2015 Issue #54 - August/September 2015 - CHVRCHES
Noah Van Sciver's latest graphic novel centers on a writer struggling with a world that constantly refuses him. Fante Bukowski-not his real name, of course-pens god-awful poetry about his father and writes shamelessly derivative fiction. In a series of vignettes, we see his attempts to figure out the industry, and his mundane failures.
Fante romanticizes his own life, including his decision to leave a cushy job at his dad's law firm, clinging to the idea that he's simply misunderstood and frankly too genius for the masses. However, Sciver's depiction employs more pity with Fante's existence than celebration. A cynic would interpret Bukowski as a talentless whiner, passing real opportunity for a narcissistic fantasy, if it weren't for moments that allow the reader to genuinely empathize with him. Fante Bukowski ends up as aimless as its title character, even to a fault. But Van Sciver's art captures the charm of alternative comics, a haphazard style that perfectly mirrors Fante's own attempts at authenticity. (www.fantagraphics.com)
Author rating: 6.5/10
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