Lucille by Ludovic Debeurme

Lucille
by Ludovic Debeurme
Top Shelf Productions, 2011

The first printing in English of this impressive award-winning French graphic novel, which tells the story of reclusive anorexic teenager Lucille and her relationship with the troubled Arthur, son of an alcoholic fisherman who kills himself after his friend perishes at sea. Is the sensitive son blamed for this accident? You betcha. It’s like a book-length Eels song.

Lucille and Arthur (who has now taken his father’s name, Vladimir) flee their problems to live in the Italian countryside, where they fall prey to Adolpho and Clarissa, the spoilt, evil offspring of their rich employer… but after the first few pages, you knew this story wasn’t going to end well.

The fine artwork is as simple as possible, with no solid blacks or panel divisions, but careful layout ensures each drawing flows logically into the next. After 544 rather gloomy pages you think it’s reached a fine conclusion – but no, it’s just the end of part one! Part two is coming out – but in French – this year.

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