Syncopated: An Anthology of Nonfiction Picto-Essays

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Why I finished it: I was surprised how many details reminded me of South Korea, where I was born and raised. For example, he shows women killing flies in his hotel. My mom used to catch flies with her hands. Guy also saw women wearing socks over nylons, and experienced firsthand how many Korean men including his guide unapologetically smoke in enclosed spaces. Link to this review by sharonlevin tagged comic strips.

For Better or For Worse has followed the adventures of the Patterson family for more than 30 years. Johnston has tackled topics like divorce, death, extramarital affairs, adolescence, childhood and homosexuality with humor, warmth and an understanding. This book is the result hence the title , a mix of her old and new strips with notes from Johnston about the plot, inconsistencies, her thoughts, and life. It begins with the arrival of Farley, the dog, when Michael and Elizabeth are still quite young.

Why I picked it up: Are you kidding? I used to relate to Elizabeth , the little sister, but now I see myself in Elly , the mother.

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Why I finished it: I'm fascinated by the behind the scenes stories. Johnston includes a picture of the real-life Farley and her correspondence with Canadian writer Farley Mowat , who correctly guessed the dog was named for him. The only text is "What happened here?!! I'd give it to: I had to take it from my teens so I could read it. These comics breathe life into the essay.

They would inspire students who express themselves through pictures, and I hope inform their teachers about the possibilities of the medium, too. Link to this review by flemtastic tagged fantasy. The Akaran dynasty ruled Acacia for hundreds of years through an economy supported by drug sales and slavery.

The Mein people, exiled to the ice-covered north, assassinate King Leodan and seize control his empire with the help of huge, warlike creatures called the Numrek. Why I picked it up: David Anthony Durham gained quite a following from his historical fiction, and this is is first fantasy novel.

Why I finished it: I loved the destruction caused by giant hog-like creatures called Antoks, released in battle to go after warriors in certain colored tunics and armor. The difficult journeys of the Akaran children also kept me reading. I'd give it to: Fans of George R.


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Not sure if the form works as well for short essays as it does for exten The best only anthology of essayistic comics I've ever read. Not sure if the form works as well for short essays as it does for extended non-fiction, or even shorter fictions? Worth a look but hard to jump up and down about short "picto-essays" about Native American identity; adopting a Chinese infant; the guy who came up with the eight stages of child development; drawings of Washington Square Park or NYC subway buskers yawn ; or an appreciation of what it takes to bale hay. Also, maybe seemed a little too NYCentric?

Perfectly adequate and original but nothing to get all evangelical about. Jan 21, Craig rated it liked it Shelves: graphic-novels. And that is exactly what we get here: often discordant, but complimentary notes that come together in a pleasant, challenging package. As with any anthology and I've edited them myself, so this is not shade , there is generally a mixed bag of items. However, here, the mixed bag is exactly what it seems like the editor was going for.

While not all of the stories grab me or will be memorable, the intent behind the collection and the stories collected within is what is most important. Each creator paints a vivid portrait of the world, often personal, that is incredibly meaningful in the age of personal space and avoidance of connection with other people. It provides a window into another world, another experience, and it reminds us that every human story has value.

Jan 05, Damon rated it liked it. This volume has an example of one of my favorite kinds of story - the "lost treasure" story, where someone has created or collected something that no one else has, something that without this one person would never have existed and that even despite this person, no one really knows about. I don't know why, really - maybe it's just that I'm a compulsive collector, but I'm always fascinated by stories like this, even when the content of the lost collection is of no innate interest to me.


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Anyway, go This volume has an example of one of my favorite kinds of story - the "lost treasure" story, where someone has created or collected something that no one else has, something that without this one person would never have existed and that even despite this person, no one really knows about.

Anyway, good book overall - I like the variations in what the creators included interpret as "reportage" or "picto-essays," and there's some very good stuff here covering the spectrum from personal to political. Oct 06, Harris rated it really liked it Shelves: library-book , non-fiction , comics. I didn't really know what to expect when I began reading "Syncopated" but it turned out to be a very interesting collection of comic pieces, or "picto-essays" with themes ranging from the humorous to the sobering, the strange to the mundane.

Each comic is extremely evocative in telling its story, even more impressive that each is nonfictional encomp history, memoir, and journalism. With as wide a variety of art styles as topics each piece was as interesting the read as the last. In particularly, I didn't really know what to expect when I began reading "Syncopated" but it turned out to be a very interesting collection of comic pieces, or "picto-essays" with themes ranging from the humorous to the sobering, the strange to the mundane.

In particularly, I really enjoyed Rina Piccolo's discussion of "postal cards," being a postcard collector and fan of found items myself. Jun 15, Sarah Hunter rated it really liked it Shelves: comics. This book is a collection of "nonfiction picto-essays" and for the most part I really enjoyed it. There is some really interesting stuff in here about international adoption, state sanctioned torture, graffiti artists in New York, and lots of other topics.

The content is incredibly varied, in both style and subject, and the only criticism I have of it is that an awful lot of the stories take place in New York City. On the other hand, NYC is a place with a lot of stories and many people live ther This book is a collection of "nonfiction picto-essays" and for the most part I really enjoyed it.

On the other hand, NYC is a place with a lot of stories and many people live there, so I can understand how it turned out that way. It took me about an hour and a half total to read. Jun 27, Sheri S. This book includes the work of several graphic artists and covers a range of topics.

I appreciated the exposure to the various artists' styles and their approach to their respective issue.

Syncopated: An Anthology of Nonfiction Picto-Essays

One of the picto-essays that I found most interesting was "West Side Improvements" about the artists of the tunnels beneath Riverside Park in New York. It was also fascinating to read about Guantanamo Bay, the background of Erik Erikson and the Dvorak keyboards some topics of which I previously knew little ab This book includes the work of several graphic artists and covers a range of topics. It was also fascinating to read about Guantanamo Bay, the background of Erik Erikson and the Dvorak keyboards some topics of which I previously knew little about among other issues.

May 31, Jeremy rated it really liked it. Syncopated was my first experience with picto-essays, and I'm lucky I started here. The book is varied, fun, and has something for everyone. Each author has something neat to say. Perhaps the best aspect of the book is that the essays, short though they are, are packed with thought provoking material. Since there's no plot, you're not compeled to hurry through the book and get to the end. Thus, I found myself stopping after each essay to just think about what I had just read. This process leaves Syncopated was my first experience with picto-essays, and I'm lucky I started here.

This process leaves you with new perspectives and a unique reading experience that makes Syncopated worth your time. Mar 24, Wayne rated it liked it. As is the case with most anthologies, the stories are uneven. I like 3 of them quite a bit. The first story is my favorite. I mean really. I could have written that almost word for word.

Same time frame and everything. I was in Virginia though and he was in New England. Fun stuff and vivid memories than will be with me always. May 25, P. I'd argue that a good number of these aren't "essays" or what I think of as narrative non-fiction. What they are are mostly pleasing to read. The best piece is about the process of hay baling--it uses the graphic form and the first person voice to make what sounded like an utterly boring subject fascinating.

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The other standout was the piece on Guantanamo. Simple and powerful. There was one that relied on a conversation and info-dumping as its narrative method, which disappointed me.


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I can't even r I'd argue that a good number of these aren't "essays" or what I think of as narrative non-fiction. I can't even remember what it was about--goes to show how effective that was. Feb 10, Allie rated it it was amazing Shelves: audience-adults , non-fiction , graphics-comics , short-stories , readers-anthologies-compilations.

I have told so many of my co-workers and comics-loving friends about this book! Graphic non-fiction is one of my favorite genres and this did not disappoint. Usually with anthologies there are some weak points, but I thought this was unusually strong.

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And I thought the weakest essay was by the editor of the book. I think the strength of this collection lies in how far-reaching the topics and how varied the styles are; but they also don't attempt to exhaustively explore the topic.

Syncopated: An Anthology of Nonfiction Picto-Essays

The Recommended! They're factual and real, but personal and affected. Mar 13, David Stewart rated it liked it.

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