Book Review: Killing & Dying by Adrian Tomine

I have a soft spot in my heart for Adrian Tomine. C says he finds Tomine’s work depressing, but he’ll read Killing & Dying because his style is that good. This latest book by Tomine is spectacular. 

As always, the stories are funny and bittersweet. I’d like to tell you which was my favorite, but they all served unique purposes that made the book itself seem whole. The art was clean and tight while feeling stylistically multilingual. I took it to bed with the intention of reading one of the six stories, but ended up reading three because each story satiated different needs and represented different perspectives. 

Tomine is not for everyone. His work is thick with nuance and brimming with characters who need love but often lack self-acceptance. His stories are not traditionally happy, but they feel real. More importantly, they contain truth.

As a physical thing, Killing & Dying is a beautiful book. The paper is both heavy and soft. The binding makes for easy reading, and the transparent jacket is beautifully minimalist. 

Truly, Killing & Dying is a work of art.

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