Corinna is a having a moment of “why am I doing this?” She is in advertisement, living alone with a feral cat, with no friends outside of work. When she feels like she’s dead inside she goes to the shops and steals a magazine. Life isn’t the great adventure she was hoping for back in college.
Yeah, it’s a graphic novel. So this was a very quick read. But it strangely was very good.
First, visually; lovely illustrations, a very consistent style throughout. I really liked the little moments that matched the dialogue e.g she’s talking about only seeing her high school friends through a tiny picture and status updates, visually we see the tiny windows on the outside of the train, a snap shot of those inside. A graphic novel gets to use the best elements of storytelling from novels (dialogue) and films (camera shots).
Story wise it isn’t straight forward. We’re following Corinna, seeing how unhappy in her current position she is in. She is unsure how to make a change, which is stressful and depressing, then a change happens and everything bottoms out, and then comes the relief when she accepts it and gets on with her life. It isn’t a boy meets girl and fills in the void or a simple take out the bad guy and everything will be airtight. It’s not so clear from the start where everything is going or what she needs in her life. Essentially, it’s unexpected. Which is refreshing to read.
Emotionally, how did Cho get this so right? Yep, not knowing what to do with your life, feeling trapped in a cycle of work and paying bills, having no friends and a cat that’s on the scary side… the rise and fall was so clever and done so well in dialogue and art.
Let’s talk about the shoplifting. It was a hobby I never thought could be addictive. Or be the thing keeping her from growing. That’s it. It had a big impact on her life but it was a couple of tiny moments in the story. More could probably be said about it, an in-depth analysis of why shoplifting is a crutch to those stuck in life… however, I am not a psych student so that’s not going to happen here. Sorry.
I will recommend this highly if you ever find a copy. It’s short and more or a snap shot of a woman’s unfulfilled life, so if that interests you, good.