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Spina, Sam – Grandma Stories


Grandma Stories

It’s always a good sign when I go to a creator’s website to check on the price of the comic I’m going to review and end up spending a good 10 minutes thoroughly enjoying the strips. Sam also does a (mostly, it seems) daily four panel strip about his life and, from what I can tell from 10 minutes of reading, it’s fantastic. But we’re here to talk about this comic, not his apparent awesomeness in general. This comic is exactly what the title implies: it’s Sam having conversations on the phone with his grandma (with a short phone conversation with his mom thrown in for some history on his grandma) as she tells him stories of her life for his 24 hour comic. It didn’t technically end up being a 24 hour comic, as he apparently didn’t finish inking 9 pages out of the 24 during the time period, but this comic has an amazing level of detail for a 24 hour book. Backgrounds a’plenty, and it only looked a little rushed in a few isolated spots. Anybody who has read a few of these timed books knows that it can get ugly, and this book had none of those problems. Anyway, stories from his grandma include her collecting supplies for the WWII war effort (when she was a kid), trying to convince her young brother to like his school, an incident with a sled and some barbed wire at the bottom of a hill, and collecting smooth stones to use as toys. There are also a few bits thrown in about life as it’s happening to her now (these are phone conversations, after all) and Sam eventually concedes that she’s told him way too many stories to put into this book. That sounds like a graphic novel to me, as everything they talked about was thoroughly entertaining, but what do I know? There’s also a nice color epilogue on the back page where Sam talks about spending time with his grandparents when he was a kid. It’s a thoroughly engaging little book, and don’t get scared off because you think this one might be too sweet for you. It’s touching, sure, but also funny as hell, and that one always wins out for me. $3