Read me fake being one!
Ghost World has become a cultural and generational touchstone, and continues to enthrall and inspire readers over a decade after its original release as a graphic novel. Originally serialized in the pages of the seminal comic book Eightball throughout the mid-1990s, this quasi-autobiographical story (the name of one of the protagonists is famously an anagram of the author’s name) follows the adventures of two teenage girls, Enid and Becky, two best friends facing the prospect of growing up, and more importantly, apart. Daniel Clowes is one of the most respected cartoonists of his generation, and Ghost World is his magnum opus.
I started this graphic novel a while back; I read half and then I never got to finishing it. Yesterday I finally did. And I don’t think this is on my particularly-liked list.
The reason for that is that while there were things that were not usual and things I liked, in the end, this graphic novel dwindled down to some very petty things. It’s a story about two best friends, after high school and the inevitability of the changes in their friendship. And, it was good in the way that it portrayed this in-between state and both the girls didn’t do anything concrete except just back-slap ideas. I liked this because i felt like it depicted normal life in a way. Just the state of existing and the throw of companionship; I liked it.
And along with that, the characters in this graphic novel are unusual. In the beginning, instead of raising my eye-brows, I was just confused as what I was expected to consider normal, but then I accepted it and then understood their antics and ways of life albeit with some amusement. This book is entirely a weird strata of characters and you just roll with it.
Now to the what I didn’t like: towards the end we see confrontation and developments in their friendship and to me, it felt the book expected them to make it happen; so it didn’t feel real or true in the series of events. And then it felt like they were forcefully trying to make it happen. And it’s a bunch of ugly stuff. And so it just didn’t do it for me.
Another thing I liked about this book though was how frivolity is expressed. It’s sort of a darker take at summers with nothing to do and the insignificance of being adolescents who think the world about themselves. Yeah, maybe. Or maybe I’m just making this all up in my mind. There’s no way to tell.
However, I am glad I read this book. It was an experience, not a horrible one but not a particularly fruitful one but I am wiser for it.
[I apologize for my writing; I don’t think I understand it either.]
Do I recommend it? Well, if you think what I mentioned in the review interests or intrigues you; definitely try it out; people have had so many different reactions and feelings to this book- who knows what you’ll see? It’s definitely interesting and unusual so that’s a treat.
But if you want a good plot and something solid; I suggest you shy away from this one. Or don’t. Don’t let me tell you what to do. I’m a horrible person. Honestly.
If you’ve read this graphic novel, pray, tell me your thoughts. What did you take from it?