Vondruska, Greg – Summer Goes Slowly


Summer Goes Slowly

A mark of an excellent comic is that it can change your opinion while you’re reading it.  This one starts off with a few four panel strips, which immediately set off alarm bells for me (if you don’t often read this site, I’m usually not a fan of that format), but immediately shifts into longer and more meaningful stories.  The premise is simple: these are stories from Greg’s childhood (the scattered stories range from 1978 to 1988).  One other thing that got on my nerves right away was how the action shifted all over the place, as he would tell a story from (as he went from ’82 to ’79 and then back to ’82 again), but as the book went on I became convinced that Greg made the right call.  This isn’t an autobiography, after all, it’s a collection of important stories from when Greg was a kid, and chronological order is far from the most important thing.  I still could have used some sort of intro that mentioned Greg’s age so I could go back and see exactly how old he was for each story, but I was able to more or less figure it out eventually.  So, quibbles aside, how was the book?  I loved it.  If you’re looking for some awkward stories about teen and pre-teen years, you’re in luck.  The piece where Greg asked a girl at church if he could call her over the summer (she reluctantly agreed), where he called her 13 times in two days but never heard back, is a rite of passage for just about every young boy.  See, young Greg, it turns out that girls (and eventually women) will often say that they’re willing to go out to you because they don’t want to hurt your feelings by saying no, instead preferring that you make a fool out of yourself for trying, as then you’re supposed to figure it out for yourself.  See, there’s nothing that can hurt your feelings about that set-up!  And no, such a thing never happened to me, why do you ask? <cough> Anyway, other stories in here include a first kiss (?), seeing the news of Reagan getting shot, seeing Jimmy Carter lose, showing off riding with no hands on a bike and getting a hairline fracture (another male rite of passage), tasting the cat food, drawing comics The Marvel Way, Dr. Who, getting called out on his Mom washing his hair before school, bird crap on his leg, a snowball fight, cheaters at frisbee, getting into a “fight” over defending a girl’s honor, and making it to the end of a bike race.  This is a hefty book for that cheap $4 price, and you’re just about guaranteed to feel some nostalgia reading over these stories.  Well, unless you’re a child, in which case you can point and laugh at the silly old people.  $4

Posted on June 10, 2010, in Reviews and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Vondruska, Greg – Summer Goes Slowly.

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