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A CONTRACT WITH GOD AND OTHER STORIESWriter/Artist: Will Eisner
Synopsis: A series of stories revolving around Street, a slum tenement in the Jewish neighbourhood of Brooklyn during the Depression. A devout Jewish man finds his faith challenged after a tragedy in the title story; a nasty landlord finds himself the victim of a child's prank; ; and the stories of half a dozen families on vacation are interwoven in "The Cookaway".
How Is It?: There's a reason why the comics industry's greatest award is named the Eisner. With this book, Eisner single-handedly invented the "graphic novel", and used it in ways that others are only now beginning to emulate. And this is in the 60s!!! I had a hard time summarizing the stories, because more often than not they're about complex human relationships instead of plots. Much of it seems to be autobiographical (Eisner himself, as a kid, appears in one story) and on the whole it's a genuinely personal and heartfelt work, perhaps Eisner's finest. The drawing style has a cartoony feel to it, which may either make it more appealling or turn you away from it. But this book helps make a compelling argument for comics as literature.
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