Dog Biscuits

Alex Graham, 1987-

Book - 2022

It's July 2020 in Seattle. Gussy struggles to keep his dog biscuit boutique afloat while a global pandemic rages unchecked. The loneliness of lockdown and social distancing drives his employee Rosie to betray her principles. Rosie's roommate Hissy is at a personal crossroads. A love triangle emerges as they find themselves tangled in a web of police brutality, protests, drugs, dating apps and Covid chaos. Taking place over the course of just a few days, this is a snapshot of humanity -...- okay, animals -- in crisis. Alex Graham's pandemic-inspired graphic novel was initially serialized six panels at a time on Instagram during the lockdowns of 2020 and became one of the most talked about comics of the year; this hardcover edition will remain a timeless work long after the pandemic ends.

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Subjects
Genres
Webcomics
Humorous comics
Social issue comics
Graphic novels
Published
Seattle, Washington : Fantagraphics Books Inc [2022]
Language
English
Physical Description
407 pages : chiefly illustrations ; 24 cm
ISBN
9781683965527
1683965523
Main Author
Alex Graham, 1987- (author)
Review by Library Journal Reviews

A love triangle in Seattle over the summer of 2020 reveals the intersection and impact of social media, woke culture, art, commerce, politics, and gender and class dynamics in this complete collection of author and illustrator Graham's Cartoonist Studio Prize Award—winning webcomic. (Graham also previously self-published the webcomic in a print-on-demand edition in 2021.) After giving up on the artistic aspirations of his youth to run a gourmet dog biscuit bakery, a middle-aged man named Gussy finds himself on the verge of bankruptcy. He's infatuated with Rosie, a twenty-something determined to live according to her principles, once she figures out what they actually are, who is equally enamored with Gussy and her housemate Hissy, the activist son of a major celebrity. With COVID surging, the economy cratering, and clashes between protestors and police threatening to turn the city into a battleground, Graham highlights the disparity between her cast's private lives and public personas to evoke how psychological, emotional, and cultural factors combine to compel human behavior. VERDICT Graham (Cosmic Be-Ing; This Never Happened) has created an occasionally scathing yet perceptive portrait of an especially fraught period in American history. Copyright 2022 Library Journal.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Many artists re-channeled their creativity during the Covid-related lockdowns, but few managed it with as much fiery elan and grace as Graham. Serialized as a daily webcomic on Instagram, this Seattle-set graphic novel takes place over a few days as a love triangle breaks an already-fragile hipster ecosystem. Gussy is a middle-aged ex-painter now running a yuppie dog treat café (sample offering: Rosemary cracked pepper balsamic buttermilk) and lusting after his younger employee, Rosie. Though Rosie is keen on Gussy, her attention is drawn more acutely to her roommate, Hissy, a trust-fund bisexual dabbler in social justice. While of different generations, Rosie and Gussy seem of the same neurotic mold, spinning in self-recriminating spirals while Hissy blithely stirs trouble. The hothouse pandemic atmosphere amplifies the trio's combustible situation, as does Graham's art: her characters are drawn with animal heads affixed to human torsos, exaggerated expressions, and ropy limbs, and have a knack for self-destruction. Occasionally X-rated relationship drama gets balanced with fantastical elements (Hissy being the son of actor Jennifer Love Hewitt, for example). Graham channels summer 2020's rage with a sharp eye: cops appear clownishly sadistic, protestors refuse to admit the violence happening in front of them. It's a messy comedy of errors for readers who embrace the social media chaos of Matt Furie but appreciate Graham's greater nuance. (May) Copyright 2022 Publishers Weekly.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Many artists re-channeled their creativity during the Covid-related lockdowns, but few managed it with as much fiery elan and grace as Graham. Serialized as a daily webcomic on Instagram, this Seattle-set graphic novel takes place over a few days as a love triangle breaks an already-fragile hipster ecosystem. Gussy is a middle-aged ex-painter now running a yuppie dog treat café (sample offering: Rosemary cracked pepper balsamic buttermilk) and lusting after his younger employee, Rosie. Though Rosie is keen on Gussy, her attention is drawn more acutely to her roommate, Hissy, a trust-fund bisexual dabbler in social justice. While of different generations, Rosie and Gussy seem of the same neurotic mold, spinning in self-recriminating spirals while Hissy blithely stirs trouble. The hothouse pandemic atmosphere amplifies the trio's combustible situation, as does Graham's art: her characters are drawn with animal heads affixed to human torsos, exaggerated expressions, and ropy limbs, and have a knack for self-destruction. Occasionally X-rated relationship drama gets balanced with fantastical elements (Hissy being the son of actor Jennifer Love Hewitt, for example). Graham channels summer 2020's rage with a sharp eye: cops appear clownishly sadistic, protestors refuse to admit the violence happening in front of them. It's a messy comedy of errors for readers who embrace the social media chaos of Matt Furie but appreciate Graham's greater nuance. (May) Copyright 2022 Publishers Weekly.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

WINNER 2021 Cartoonist Studio Prize, Best WebcomicIt’s July 2020 in Seattle. Gussy struggles to keep his dog biscuit boutique afloat while a global pandemic rages unchecked. The loneliness of lockdown and social distancing drives his employee Rosie to betray her principles. Rosie’s roommate Hissy is at a personal crossroads. A love triangle emerges as they find themselves tangled in a web of police brutality, protests, drugs, dating apps and Covid chaos. Taking place over the course of just a few days, this is a snapshot of humanity — okay, animals — in crisis. Alex Graham’s pandemic-inspired graphic novel was initially serialized six panels at a time on Instagram during the lockdowns of 2020 and became one of the most talked about comics of the year; this hardcover edition will remain a timeless work long after the pandemic ends.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Social justice, “woke” culture, social media, gender dynamics, and insouciance intersect in this pandemic-inspired graphic novel about the repercussions of making mistakes.