Journalism

Publisher: Jonathan Cape

Joe Sacco is one of the most unique graphic novelists of his time. I wonder if he would even be satisfied with the label, graphic novelist. His works encompass so much more. He tells oral histories of our times. He writes journalism. He prepares news stories and reportages of conflict zones, of human triumph over adversity and the horrors of war. He writes with truth, authenticity and humour.

Here, Joe Sacco's short form comic pieces are collected. Topics covered are the smuggling tunnels of Gaza to war crimes trials in The Hague. He explores the untouchables of India and the sub-Saharan refugees washed up in Malta. He exposes the misery and absurdity of the war in Iraq, blowing apart the torture of detainees.

These are brave pieces. Sacco places himself in the action, shows his interactions with people. He is never polemical. Always truthful. There is a beauty to the abject horror he depicts, bizarrely, and always a black humour. Joe Sacco is one of the most gifted journalists of his time and the way he presents his work - in comic book form - makes accessible some of the darkest chapters in our time.

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