by Sylvie Roge & Olivier Grenson
Angel of Death by Sylvie Roge & Olivier Grenson is both a masterful graphic novel and a heart-wrenching dramatic piece of art that I’m not sure I was prepared for today. It’s a tale of two young women coping with past childhood abuse and trauma, and how not everyone makes it out the other side in one piece. The main protagonist, Frannie Duroy, has committed an unspeakable act – the murder of her twin sister and mother. She doesn’t remember why because something flipped her into a blind rage and she just snapped, it’s up to her lawyer to find out exactly what happened on one cold Christmas Eve in 2006. The book is the tale of her life leading up to that night and how the actions of a selfish person can have irreparable effects on somebody growing up. If you are like me, you are almost “rooting for” the ultimate end of the book, as Frannie’s mother is such a big example of human garbage that one can understand what ultimately happens.
“A beautiful young woman is accused of an unspeakable crime that seems completely out of step with her sweet personality. As she tells her life story to her attorney, the book delves into the psyche and past of a young girl with a cold mother, an absent father, a twin sister with whom she shared an unbreakable bond, and a horrific family secret that leads to tragedy. But beyond the wounds of the past and the pain of the present, the book ultimately emerges as a poignant love story between two inseparable little girls.”
I particularly love the artwork in this book. Olivier Grenson has a way with his lines in that everything looks like a well-detailed colored-pencil sketch even though I assume this was likely done digitally. The style actually somewhat reminds me of Japanese comics from the 80’s, especially color insert pages, which is always a delight for me – I love that style. Everything is subdued with the color red popping spectacularly in certain scenes, and the composition has a masterful touch, akin to that of a cinematographer for a feature film. Honestly, this would make a great film if it ever got re-conceptualized in that way despite the bitter sadness of the plot.
I’m not sure I should have read such a sad book today, to be quite honest, but Angel of Death by Sylvie Roge & Olivier Grenson as published by Europe Comics is an instant classic for me. Both the story and the artwork are amazing, and I REALLY need to look for more works by the creative staff. The book doesn’t really leave you on any sort of ending that gives the story closure, which is fair. The main plot doesn’t really center around the fate of Frannie Duroy, but the story of she and her sister’s inseparable love despite the invisible hand of pure evil trying to ruin it. What a great book, very unexpected.
If you are interested in this book, click HERE
For additional titles by the same publisher, Click HERE
NOTE: I received a free preliminary, and likely unedited copy of this book from Netgalley for the purposes of providing an honest, unbiased review of the material. Thank you to all involved.