Tag Archives: Italy

Review: MACARONI! by Vincent Zabus and Thomas Campi

MACARONI!

MACARONI! is a graphic novel involving three generations in conflict. And 11-year-old Romeo is caught in the middle. It seems that Romeo’s father has struggled to get to know his own father. The resolution to years of silence may be found in a week-long summer visit. Romeo’s dad wants him to hang out with his grandfather Ottavio at his rural home out in the countryside. Poor little Romeo reluctantly agrees to do it. MACARONI! is written by Vincent Zabus (Spirou et Fantasio), drawn by Thomas Campi (MAGRITTE), published by Dupuis, and available as a digital comic in French or English at izeno right here.

An agreement between father and son.

Zabus and Campi have collaborated on the one-shot “Les Petites Gens,“ published by Le Lombard, as well as “Les Larmes Du Seigneur Afghan,” written by Vincent Zabus in collaboration with the RTBF (Belgian television) reporter Pascal Bourgaux, published by Dupuis Editions and awarded the Prix Cognito for Best Graphic Novel at the Belgian Book Fair in 2014. For this story about a boy and his grandfather, you can easily sense a close connection between the writer and artist, as if they were one creator. The natural dialogue fits so well into the expressive artwork and vice versa. There’s a spontaneity running throughout, moving the story forward, embracing the reader. You instantly sympathize with Romeo.

“You’ll be fine.”

Romeo’s father assures him that he’ll be fine. And, in little time, Romeo knows visiting his grandfather is the best thing that could have happened to him. It won’t be easy. The old man is gruff and secretive. With a little help from Lucie, a neighbor girl Romeo’s age, Ottavio shares tales of his tumultuous life going all the way back to fighting in World War II. Peppered with insightful facts, the reader cannot help but get caught up in the emotional recollection.

Ottavio has a lifetime to share.

MACARONI! takes on the full breadth of a stage play as three generations come to terms with each other. The reader comes to see just how much of a burden Ottavio has had to bear: from learning why he lost his thumb to seeing what a struggle it was for Italian immigrants to start a new life in Belgium. This is an exceptional narrative that will appeal to any reader of any age.

MACARONI! is a 145-page full color graphic novel. You can read a digital version at izneo right here.

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Filed under Comics, Dupuis, Graphic Novel Reviews, graphic novels, izneo, Thomas Campi, Vincent Zabus

Boom! Studios: Sergio Toppi’s ‘The Collector’ To Be Published in English

Sergio-Toppi-The-Collector

The late Sergio Toppi, a legendary cartoonist, is being introduced to a whole new generation, thanks to Boom! Studios and its award-winning imprint, Archaia. Last year, SHARAZ-DE: TALES FROM THE ARABIAN NIGHTS was released. And now, we have the English translation to Toppi’s classic, THE COLLECTOR. It will be released in September. Details follow.

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Filed under Archaia, Boom! Studios, European Comics, Sergio Toppi

Review: POMPEII by Frank Santoro, published by PictureBox

Pompeii-Frank-Santoro

Frank Santoro is an artist with a vision that can run counter to what some people expect in their comics. Casual, and more refined, readers alike tend to want their comics ink-rendered, bold, and grounded in a certain manner. Santoro’s work is often pencilled and it is experimental and has an ethereal quality. But a reader only needs to take a careful read to see that Santoro’s work has its own unique substance. In “Pompeii,” his most recent graphic novel, published by PictureBox, Santoro maintains the spontaneity of sketchbook drawings in a well orchestrated narrative. This is a story about learning how to see the world as it really is and perhaps gaining solace from how it may have been.

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Filed under Comics, Frank Santoro, Graphic Novel Reviews, graphic novels, PictureBox