Nicholas (nwhyte) wrote,
Nicholas
nwhyte

December Books 10) The Fixer

10) The Fixer: A Story from Sarajevo, by Joe Sacco

This is, in a sense, a sequel to Sacco's brilliant Safe Area Goražde, but following just one person, Neven, a Sarajevo Serb, a former fighter on the Bosnian side in the war who Sacco got to know as his "fixer" when he first visited Sarajevo just after the war ended in 1995. (I first went there myself in early 1997, and the city of Sacco's book is definitely the one I knew.)

Anyone who has worked in that sort of environment knows the essential nature of the fixer. Sacco captures it well: but it's not just about Neven's murky past and dubious present, it's also about the dodgy wartime goings on between the "legitimate" government and its bully-boys (and one of the personalities featured in the book was in the news again recently, having apparently committed suicide earlier this month) and the inevitable resulting questions about who is right and who is wrong; and it's also about the effect that Sacco's observation has, not only on the people and situations he is observing, but on Sacco himself.

If there is a weakness in the book, it is perhaps that the casual reader might take Neven's experiences as in some way typical of the Bosnian (or any) war. Neven is a somewhat unusual character. But then again, we are all of us unusual characters, and perhaps Sacco is right to just take a single personality and follow him through the conflict, in his own words and as others reported him. Anyway, well worth reading.
Tags: bookblog 2008, comics, world: bosnia, writer: joe sacco
Subscribe
  • Post a new comment

    Error

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.
  • 5 comments