From Publishers Weekly
A young man wanders a war-torn tundra accompanied only by a stuffed bear. As he wanders, he encounters various animals and humans who all prove inferior to the lifeless bear as a real companion—imaginary friends are the best ones in a world where everyone competes for meager resources. Nilsen has crafted a haunting fable of humanity and loneliness, confronting tropes about journeys and destinations. "I know this whole venture is not about having a goal," he tells the bear at one point. "But doesn't the whole idea of a journey become kind of meaningless if there's not a sense of some destination?" Each encounter is more troubling than the last: a bus shows up but a passenger shoots at the narrator. A pack of reindeer try to steal the bear. In return, the narrator blinds one of the majestic stags with a rock. A human who shows up in the bleak terrain tries to steal the narrator's pack. The narrator is finally accepted by a pack of wild dogs that lives off the remains of both the humans and animals already encountered. Nilsen's open, simple yet graceful art captures the eerie, empty sense of loss that permeates this unsettling, memorable story. (May)
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"Nilsen creates an epic landscape of desolation and doubt." --NewCity Chicago
"Nilsen's sparse, thinly rendered line work adds to the level of existential discomfort that the artist seems to excel at . . . Dogs and Water
stays with you a lot longer than most recent comics, easily marking it as one of the best of the year." --The Patriot-News
"Nilsen's art is filled with amazing white space showing a true sense of human loneliness. Above all else, the work echoes our need to be heard, even if it is only by ourselves." --Punk Planet