November 10th, 2015

train, tintin, leuven

The Sculptor, by Scott McCloud

Of the graphic stories listed on the Hugo recommendations spreadsheet, this is owned by more LibraryThing users than any other and is behind only Ms Marvel vol 2 on Goodreads. So I went out and got it. (Incidentally, I find the spreadsheet a lot more user-friendly in general than the impenetrable Wikia.)

I was aware that McCloud is well known as a comics critic and writer; his Wikipedia article suggests that this is the first actual graphic story he has published this century. If so, it was worth the wait; The Sculptor is a gripping fantasy about a young artist who does a deal with Death, to achieve fame and fortune at the cost of years of his own life. There are lots of allusions to other themes, particularly the many ways in which people express themselves, and a tragic love story running through the core of the plot. I thought it was a great example of the graphic novel, and if the other Hugo nominees are as good as this we are in for a treat.