Publisher: Top Shelf Productions
Published: July 2003
Source: Personal Library
After reading several glowing reviews on Blankets from fellow bookbloggers, I decided I should wait no more. I picked up this chunky novel last Tuesday, and began devouring it the moment I got home. I would have read it in one sitting if not of time constraint and family commitment. This is one of those books that you could not stop reading until you have read the last page.
Blankets is actually a graphic memoir of Craig Thompson's life. It is basically a record of his experience growing up, and involve themes like family, love, religious beliefs, child sexual abuse and freedom. Right from the first page, Craig shows us his love/hate relationship with his younger brother, Phil, and I have to admit it made me nostalgic as it reminds me of my relationship with my younger sister when we were younger. Both of us would say or do some mean things to each other, but at the end of the day we would forgive and forget and this would be a cycle as it goes on again and again.
Craig then proceeds to share with his readers about his strict fundamentalist Christian parents and the sexual abuse he and Phil have to endure though he did not elaborate further. His life in school is not that great either, as he has to face those bullies and disapprovals from his teachers. He took everything in without any grunt or complain, and this made my heart ache for him. He turn to drawing because it is his passion and an escapism.
He then met his first love, Raina, when he attends a winter church camp. She is like a beacon to him, and Craig has never felt so happy in his life. Raina too comes from a strict religious family, and on top of that she has to deal with the separation of her parents, as well as taking care of her mentally ill siblings. The love between Craig and Raina is simply pure and beautiful, but alas Raina felt it is simply too much to commit to a long distance relationship while dealing with her family, so sadly they have to go on separate ways.
What is most beautiful about Blankets is not only the outstanding illustrations but the emotions it evoked in me while reading this (Craig really captured all the emotions perfectly in this book.) There are some heartwarming, tender moments, but there are also some not-so-good moments that made you think and question about life, faith and freedom. It also made me teary-eyed just viewing the blanket Raina had made for Craig, because that reminds me of the blanket my grandmother used to make for me when I was a little girl.
Craig with his little brother, Phil Craig and Raina
Seriously, I could go on and on, but I would rather you read it for yourself. I could now understand why this graphic novel has been receiving so many good reviews, and I can tell you I am so glad I did not wait much longer in reading it. Now it's your turn!
For more reviews on Blankets, please visit Book Blogs Search Engine.