Tag Archives: cancer vixen

WG 2010-19: Getting Graphic

This week’s WG is about graphic novels. Now, despite the fact that I’m married to a webcomic artist, my experience with comics is extremely limited. I am slowly (oh, so slowly) working my way through the Death Note manga series and have read the first few collections of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, but I’ve only read three self-contained graphic novels: Malice, which was kind of meh; In Odd We Trust, which was pretty decent; and Cancer Vixen, which was absolutely excellent.

My to-be-read pile has quite a few goodies, however, including The Crow, Watchmen, Preludes and Nocturnes, and Maus. I look forward to those. I have to get into a special mode to read graphic novels, though, or else I just zip from word balloon to word balloon and miss the illustrations all together.  I suspect that comes from reading comic strips (which I love), since often the dialogue is all that really matters.  Not so in graphic novels.

I am also, ostensibly, writing my own graphic novel. As of this writing the story, dialogue, and storyboarding is all finished. All that’s left is the actual drawing. You know, just a minor step.

Cancer Vixen by Marisa Acocella Marchetto

Cancer Vixen by Marisa Acocella Marchetto: This is the true story, told as a graphic novel, of a NYC cartoonist and her battle with breast cancer. She is diagnosed mere weeks before her wedding to restauranteur Silvano Marchetto, and between that, her job, and the constant nuisance of models hitting on her fiance, things start to get a little harried. The comic format lends levity when needed, but never detracts from the serious parts. Since Marchetto describes every excruciating step of her diagnosis and treatment in great detail, I learned a lot about the process. My mom had breast cancer a few years ago (she survived and is doing fine now, thank goodness), but since I was living 700 miles away at the time I didn’t really experience it first-hand. I don’t usually like reading survivor stories, but this one was pleasantly non-glurgy, even if I couldn’t always relate to her fashionista tendencies. This is something I would urge all women to read, especially those dealing with a recent diagnosis. It’s funny and touching and ultimately uplifting.

Also posted on BookCrossing.

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