Skip to main content

Lighter than my Shadow: A quiet and beautiful punch to the heart


Some novels have to be broken into pieces in order to remain emotionally healthy. I remember reading a Henry Rollin's poetry book called 'To see a grown man cry', which tore at me a bit and I could only read a handful of pages at a time before taking a break; it was raw and impacting. Katie Green's graphic novel 'Lighter than my Shadow' held the same impact. It was well drawn and emotionally charged, fairly depressing but honest and real.

As with Rollin's poetry, 'Lighter than my Shadow' was immensely beautiful, worth the pain and effort to consume. They were both a punch to the heart that I had to consume in sections to refrain from being bruised.

  • Lighter than my Shadow (Katie Green)
  • 516 pages
  • Lion Forge
  • ISBN-10: 1941302416
  • ISBN-13: 978-1941302415


Buying books through these links will support this site but cost you no extra money.


Pick up a copy and donate it to your local or school library.




The graphic memoir genre has been growing in size over the last few years as very talented people with very interesting histories recognize the value of the presentation. Green's 'Lighter than my Shadow' fits easily into the accepting graphic format and discusses very candidly the topics of Anorexia, Binge eating, and abuse.

As memoir alludes, the point of view in this work is that of a younger Katie Green, starting with her early school years and following her through college. She battles confusing body perceptions, social pressures, and the impact of these things on her personal perception of self. She is frequently told her view of the world is inferior by people who do not try to understand.

The story hurt to read. It was concise and as outsiders looking in, we can see problems removed from emotion. We are able to pick up on the social queues and foreshadowing that time muffles and blurs when someone is experiencing it first hand.

Green's artwork was stunning, keeping several elements simplistic yet emotive (such as facial features), focusing instead on the depth of universe and backgrounds. Katie has a solid representation of her internal struggles in the form of a looming black cloud over her head. The cloud begins to form when she dwells on mean phrases yelled at her by schoolboys. The internal monologue gets louder and more forceful as she gets older and further into troubling habits, splitting her in two in jagged rips. The black cloud gets larger and louder as well, blotting out all other things. Her insatiable compensating Binge hunger is represented by an ever-growing mouth in her stomach which consumes the universe at one point.

The book is not without fault, though to be clear the the faults are NOT with the artwork or the story. There is an element of the written descriptions which were sometimes a bit confusing. Mental thoughts that are unspoken are presented exactly the same as speech bubbles for vocal conversations. The difference is only a slightly dotted line rather than a curved solid. If not precisely viewed, these sometimes are missed or easily read as solid. Because of this, there was a minor amount of re-reading needed to ensure that complex sections were fully understood.

While the subject matter of this book requires some nudity, it should be noted that the story and art might not be appropriate for all age groups. 

Highly recommended!

--
Disclosure:
This graphic novel was presented for review purposes by the publisher. I can actually see them in my mind's eye sitting in dark rooms with bright futuristic antigravity chairs and legal pads, plotting how to earn extra airline miles by putting office donut purchases on their personal credit cards. The folks in marketing and order fulfillment are surely grateful for the pastries, but they know they are pawns in a 1% gain scheme. I am not influenced by such schemes and can advise that this review was likewise not influenced. I do love free donuts though.


Additional Art samples (pages 156-159 of the book)





Comments

Popular posts from this blog

AbyssRium (IDLE Idea Factory) + Strategy

Tap games are a dime a dozen in the mobile world. Most (as is AbyssRium) are free with ad-supported revenue and/or provide efficiency cheats in a store.

AbyssRium sets itself apart from other tap games by leveraging a unique concept. In a Synthetic ocean, you are the ever loving caretaker of a talking 'Coralite', which to the best of our perceptions is an underwater volcanic vent. The point of the game is to build strength and vitality for your volcano and its surrounding wild life; evolving animals and fortifying new types of coral. As each element of your world is enhanced, you elicit more vitality from the creatures for use in evolution.
It is easiest to think of your mobile device as the side of a giant fish tank, and you are going to be tapping on the glass. While you were told in life this was bad for an aquarium, in AbyssRium, your Coralite considers this loving attention. It smiles at you, gives on screen hints, and makes a slightly disturbing orgasm face every time y…

Interview: Q&A with Khaled Talib, 'Gun Kiss' author

I recently had the opportunity to interview Crime/Thriller author Khaled Talib. He allowed me a few minutes of his time to pick his brain about both his upcoming Thriller Gun Kiss as well as to ask him about the writing and publishing process in general.

I was pleased to get some insight into his upcoming novel and dig deeper into what makes Khaled tick. We also learned about some launch week giveaways and events that will be happening, so scroll to the end for details on how to participate and enter contest

The launch window leading up to a book release is crunch time for many last minute details. I am grateful for the late night responses it likely took in order to answer my questions!


Slated for release on 12/01/2017

Synopsis of Gun Kiss:

When the Deringer pistol that shot Abraham Lincoln is stolen and ends up in the hands of a Russian military general, covert agent Blake Deco is tasked by the FBI to head to the Balkans to recover the historical weapon. Meanwhile, the United States…

Interview: Q&A with Joseph M. Reynolds, author of Make Dust Our Paper

During the Fall, I received a copy of a book that has had surprising staying power in my mind. Initially, I had mixed feelings, some ambiguity regarding the work. When it clicked with me, it really fell right into place.

Make Dust Our Paper has reserved a permanent place in my collection.

Like the nosy reader I am, after reading I emailed the author with a few followup questions about the plot. Ultimately, he answered my questions then he agreed to be interviewed about his novel and other topics. The holiday season is terribly busy for people, so I really appreciate that he was able and willing to take the time.

With that, much thanks to Joseph M. Reynolds!


Synopsis of Make Dust Our Paper:
"Carrigan approaches the millennium New Year craving climax and culmination. What he finds instead is constant anti-climax, and lack of definitional consequence for his failures and failings and genius. A conceptual heir to Fitzgerald's This Side of Paradise, this novel explores everything …