There are two stories at work within the pages of Moore’s work; one is the complex relationships that play out between Francine, Katchoo and David. Throughout the story the three are involved in a love triangle that seems to be as confusing to them as it is to the reader. Against this, Moore moves things along with a thriller story about a dodgy organisation trying to manipulate the political system of America.
This is the kind of work that helps elevate the graphic novel to sit alongside other forms of fiction and media. It is a story about people, love and relationships. All the characters seem real because they all have their strengths and flaws, and wants and desires. You can tell through the writing that this is a work of love for Moore, and that he has a lot of himself invested in the characters he puts on the page. To do all this without the security of having a major publisher behind him, well that’s just impressive.
From the first second I spent reading Strangers in Paradise I knew I was getting into something special, and it is a book I will always come back to. This series is best recommended to graphic novel fans who want more realism from their books, and if you like comics like Daniel Clowes’s Ghostworld then you’ll love Strangers in Paradise.
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