My favorite thing is monsters

Emil Ferris

Book - 2016

"Set against the tumultuous political backdrop of late '60s Chicago, and narrated by 10-year-old Karen Reyes, Monsters is told is told through a fictional graphic diary employing the iconography of B-movie horror imagery and pulp monster magazines. As the precocious Karen Reyes tries to solve the murder of her beautiful and enigmatic upstairs neighbor, Anka Silverberg, a holocaust survivor, we watch the interconnected and fascinating stories of those around her unfold" -- Publishe...r.

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Location Call Number   Status
2nd Floor Comics GRAPHIC NOVEL/Ferris/My v. 1 Due Oct 7, 2022
2nd Floor Comics GRAPHIC NOVEL/Ferris/My v. 1 Checked In
2nd Floor Comics GRAPHIC NOVEL/Ferris/My v. 1 Due Oct 9, 2022
2nd Floor Comics GRAPHIC NOVEL/Ferris/My v. 1 Checked In
Graphic novels
Comics (Graphic works)
Seattle, Washington : Fantagraphics Books 2016-
First Fantagraphics Books edition
Physical Description
volumes (unpaged) : illustrations (some color) ; 27 cm
Main Author
Emil Ferris (author)
Review by Booklist Reviews

*Starred Review* Before the publication of this startling, late-career debut, sixtysomething Ferris apparently worked as an illustrator and toy sculptor in her hometown, Chicago, for a variety of clients, including McDonald's. But she deftly counters any whiff of commercialism by laying out this graphic novel, set in the late sixties, on a stack of modest blue-lined, three-hole notebook paper, which not only achieves instant intimacy with readers, but also showcases in relief the high level of drawing chops, effort, and sheer audacity Ferris brings to the project. Ten-year-old Karen Reyes—a fan of horror magazines who loves drawing covers from Ghastly, Dread, Spectral, and Horrific ("Hell Wenches of the Inferno")—lives with her mother and older brother in an apartment on Chicago's North Side. Their upstairs neighbor Anka Silverberg has been found shot dead in her apartment, but front and back doors were locked from the inside, and the gun was missing, all of which sends young Karen ferreting out the truth herself. This makes for a fine locked-room mystery, but, more wondrously, Ferris summons the array of influences that inspire and comfort our heroine, from her North Side environs to several iconic Art Institute paintings (Ferris brilliantly reanimates these); to her artistic brother, who lovingly, patiently teaches her basic drawing techniques; to her sweet, unconventional mother, who is dying from cancer, much to Karen's terror and sadness. A triumph that will make it that much harder for readers to wait for part two, scheduled for August 2018 publication. Copyright 2018 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Library Journal Reviews

Combining elements of historical fiction, family drama, a coming-of-age-tale, and a murder mystery into an unforgettable and widely acclaimed debut, author/illustrator Ferris presents the graphic diary of Karen Reyes, an artistically inclined ten-year-old girl living in 1960s Chicago with her mother and troubled older brother. Drawing from Karen's sketchbook journal, Ferris fills each and every page of this weighty first volume of a duology (Vol. 2 releases in October) with stunningly beautiful and virtuosic illustrations, exploring Karen's fears, curiosities, and more through the lens of her fascination with pulp creatures and B-movie monsters. With an incredibly rich, sprawling narrative to match the luscious illustrations, Ferris creates an absorbing and demanding magnum opus that rewards every bit of effort it takes to comprehend the scope of her vision. VERDICT This debut has already netted Ferris comparisons to (and praise from) some of the lions of the graphic novel field, and it's the rare title that actually lives up to the hype. Readers are sure to welcome, discuss, and meditate on Ferris's accomplishment, anxiously awaiting what's next. [A movie of Ferris's work is underway, with Sony Pictures recently obtaining film rights.—Ed.]—TB Copyright 2017 Library Journal.

Review by PW Annex Reviews

Karen loves monsters, comic books, and her tattooed, art-loving big brother, Deeze. She hates her mom's cancer diagnosis, the cool kids at school, and being a little girl Chicago in the 1960s. She wants to be a monster, but when the upstairs neighbor, a Holocaust survivor left haunted and unstable by her experiences, dies under suspicious circumstances, Karen decides to become a detective. This stunningly ambitious and assured graphic novel, the creator's first, slides gracefully between past and present, reality and imagination, and the shifting kingdom of children and the hard-concrete world of adults. Ferris's writing, full of wordplay, elisions, and unpredictable revelations, suggests the cockeyed genius of Lynda Barry, comics' most fearless chronicler of childhood. But her art, presented on lined notebook paper in the form of Karen's own ballpoint-and-pencil sketches (though surely no real 10-year-old could draw this beautifully), is entirely her own. This is a book that surprises at every turn. It's about the power of art, the nature of monsters, the way secrets keep unfolding, and everything else Karen's investigations can uncover. It's the best graphic novel to come along in recent memory. (Feb.) Copyright 2017 Publisher Weekly Annex.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

In this debut, which takes the form of a fictional graphic diary, a 10-year-old girl tries to solve a murder.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

My Favorite Thing Is Monsters