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Campbell, Eddie – The Lovely Horrible Stuff


The Lovely Horrible Stuff

It’s constantly annoying to me that Eddie Campbell isn’t fabulously wealthy. He seems to get by OK, judging from his comics (it’s not like I’d have any other way to assess his finances), but somebody who has been putting out some of the best comics in the world for 30+ years now should be sleeping on a pile of money. This particular graphic novel, as you may have guessed from that cover, is all about cash, and that title should give you some idea of Eddie’s opinion on the subject. He gives us a tiny peek into how his finances work, why it’s a terrible idea to ever loan money to a father-in-law and why timing in pitching any sort of tv show based on him or his work is everything (anybody else remember that global financial catastrophe that started in 2008? I know that American voters seem uncomfortably hazy on the subject, but I’m hoping the rest of the world has better memory). Eddie wanders around a bit, but the conclusion is the same as always: the man just wants to make art and live a comfortable life. It’s a little disconcerting to see his kids as young adults, as I remember them as the tiny creatures from his earlier books, and it’s even more annoying that he has to worry about their college fund. Anyway, my bitching about the total lack of justice in the world isn’t going to change anything. The second half of the book is a bit more dry, as it’s all about an obscure form of currency from the island of Yap, what’s happened to it over the years and how it’s value was measured obliquely preceded some of the other tricks that are a huge part of the current global finance system. And they’re very large circular rocks with holes drilled in the middle of them, so their construction and how they got from place to place was also covered. This book was a bit of a departure from some of his other graphic novels, as he liberally sprinkled in pictures of people and places to mix with his drawings, which served as a vivid reminder of the almost invisible line between his character of Alec and his real world. It’s another great graphic novel from one of the best comic artists/writers working today, and there’s no reason in the world why you shouldn’t have a copy of it. Unless you hate really great books, in which case you seem to have wandered into the wrong website. $14.95