Staff Recommendation: Sabrina by Nick Drnaso

“Remember Drew Peterson? That cop that killed his wives? It was a big news story in 2007. I was dating Emma that summer. We used to sit in her mom’s basement and watch movies all night. We were watching a TV special about Drew Peterson one night when we leaned in and kissed each other for the first time. Now whenever I see or hear anything about Drew Peterson, I feel like I’m eighteen in Emma’s basement again. Is it weird to feel nostalgic for stuff like that?”

New to the library: Sabrina is a graphic novel written and illustrated by Nick Drnaso, published in 2018. It is the first ever graphic novel to be longlisted for The Man Booker Prize. Deep and introspective with minimalistic illustrations, Drnaso tells the story of a young woman kidnapped in Chicago, and how the events that unfold from this affect everyone connected to her. At the same time, it is also a poignant commentary on the fast-paced dissemination of information in our digital age, how this numbs us to the continuous stories of violence bombarding us on our screens, and the confusion we feel in a “fake news” world. The above quote, spoken by character Calvin Wrobel, is a perfect example of this sense of disassociation. Instead of remembering the Drew Peterson case as a horrific event where women went missing and were found murdered, Wrobel only remembers kissing his girlfriend at the time, because the television story was simply background noise. Drnaso does a beautiful job reminding us that moments of tragedy and horror aren’t background noise, and that we need to realize there are individuals behind every story.

If you’d like to check out Sabrina, it is available in the Greenfield Library, call number PN6727 .D76 S25 2018.

Recommended by Lillian Kinney, Cataloger/Archivist

Staff Recommendation: Blankets

From the author of Good-bye, Chunky Rice, winner of the 1999 Harvey Award for Best New Talent, comes a touching graphic novel aptly titled Blankets. In 2004 Blankets won three Harvey Awards for Best Artist, Best Graphic Album of Original Work, and Best Cartoonist, cementing Craig Thompson’s place in the graphic storytelling community.

In this novel, Thompson shares an autobiographical recollection of growing up and experiencing first love. We travel with Craig from childhood into adulthood, watching as our narrator learns about the world, about himself, and about what it means to actually grow up. Craig’s delivery of the story and wonderful illustrations help us to see the way that the world around us shapes who we grow to become: whether it’s discovering our talents, questioning the religions we grew up with, or finally coming to terms with the inner workings of our own selves. At times funny, heartbreaking, and incredibly joyful, Blankets is a great read for anyone interested in literature or graphic novels.

This book is available in the Greenfield Library open stacks at call #741.50924 T372b

Recommended by Lauralee Martin, Greenfield Library Work Study Assistant