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Malinky Robot TP Paperback – September 8, 2011

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Atari and Oliver, a latter-day Tom and Huck, wander their way through urban Japan in Liew’s ode to the iconography of pop culture. Manga, comic strips, and robots big and small figure prominently in Atari and Oliver’s daily fish hunts, bike thievery, and action-movie simulations, all cast with a slightly harder-edged tone than might be expected at a first glance of the overtly whimsical fare. Liew’s art plays to this edge and displays a strong sense of modern grunge in the malleable figures and cityscapes, which echo Shaun Tan’s semi-grim industrialism. Liew’s loose, experimental craftsmanship is very engaging, but the five stories (along with two galleries) featured here lack a cohesive narrative thrust. “New Year’s Day,” about the long journey of a tiny robot, and “Stinky Fish Blues,” about the hunt for a supposedly extinct fish, best capture the charm, melancholy, and quiet of urban wonder. A good read for those willing to take a lackadaisical but enjoyable journey through someone else’s imagination. Grades 9-12. --Jesse Karp


"A book so full of wonders and treasures it feels like you should need a pirate's map to find it. A stunningly gorgeous mix of urban fantasy and charming adventure." --Gail Simone (Birds of Prey, Secret Six, Deadpool, Wonder Woman)

"Brilliantly mixing influences... a pure moment of happiness. With drawings full of nuances and subtleties, this collection sets the foundations of an engaging world whilst daring to experiment with formal elements." --Canal BD (France)

"Sonny's art in Malinky Robot is so full of life that, if you stare at a page long enough, the characters might just walk right out of the book." --Skottie Young (The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, The Marvelous Land of Oz)

"Malinky Robot is the real deal, the kind of book that should go not just on the must-buy list, but on the must-buy-for-friends list...a story of gentle tragedy, a near-future sci-fi comic with heart... The design is brilliant, and the storytelling is resonant in all the best ways." - Wendy Holler, Newsarama

"Malinky Robot... creates a rhythm that is more akin to poetry than a novel...[A] thing of beauty... an excellent example of what gives comics relevance as a one-of-a -kind artform." --Eric Whitman, The Daily Blam

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Image Comics (September 8, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1607064065
  • ISBN-13: 978-1607064060
  • Product Dimensions: 10.2 x 6.6 x 0.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #282,763 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Sonny Liew is an award-winning comics artist, painter and illustrator whose work includes the New York Times bestseller The Shadow Hero with Gene Luen Yang (First Second Books), My Faith in Frankie with Mike Carey (DC Vertigo), Sense & Sensibility (Marvel Comics) and Doctor Fate with Paul Levitz (DC Comics).

He has received Eisner nominations for The Shadow Hero and Wonderland (Disney Press), as well as for spearheading Liquid City (Image Comics), a multi-volume comics anthology featuring creators from Southeast Asia. His Malinky Robot series is a 2004 Xeric grant recipient and winner of the Best Science Fiction Comic Album Award at the 2009 Utopiales SF Festival in Nantes. He received the Singapore National Arts Council's Young Artist Award in 2010.

Born in Malaysia, he lives in Singapore, where he sleeps with the fishes.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Jade Just on October 24, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm not a big comic book reader at all, but I am drawn to beautifully wrought illustration, which is what first attracted me to Malinky Robot. I'd never seen any other comic with such lines, shading, and coloring - which still reveals undeniably clear pictures that easily convey personalities, stories and movement. It's really a remarkable achievement. Moreover, as someone who has lived and traveled in several Asian countries, I loved the jumbled hodgepodge of some futuristic Japan-Korea-China where the stories are set. It feels like an inevitable glimpse into the future, with all the hope and sadness that conveys - like Hello Kitty meets Blade Runner in a way. But in a good way!

And although I originally bought the book because of its graphic artistry, I ended up being just as taken by the storylines themselves. As mentioned, I usually don't read comic books, but can imagine that Malinky Robot diverges from most, with their focus on action, action, action and cliffhangers that make you have to buy the next book. Malinky Robot's stories are so different - whimsical, poetic, subdued, quirky - like an independent film compared to a mind-numbing blockbuster. The journey is what's important here rather than the destination, and when going through the book, I was so reminded of the stories, poems and illustrations of A.A. Milne. There's a similar sad elegance, humor and agelessness that infuses both works, and a desire to be friends with the characters, to relax with them for a while, and just enjoy the time floating by.

This book is definitely not just for comic book aficionados alone. Anyone with an appreciation for beautiful art, poetry, irreverent humor and a childlike spirit should get a copy of this marvelous work. It certainly opened my eyes to the power and range of comics, and I look forward to following the turns of Sonny Liew's imagination in the future.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Cheryl on November 7, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Have been following the works of Sonny Liew in the past. It's great to see him come out with something that is all his own - and really shows his unique and creative voice. The stories here are all beautifully illustrated and are just so subtle and charming - definitely a far cry from the usual in-your-face superhero comic books. I especially like the melding of Asian and Western influences - the city that they live in is very Japanese to me (well, ok, a combination of Tokyo, Seoul, Hong Kong, Singapore) and having grown up in Asia, it's very cool to see such an interesting representation of Asia. Also thought it was very fun how he incorporated all the different styles in the middle pages and the guest art at the back - some really cool stuff!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Evaporation is Itchy on September 13, 2011
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Sometimes you wish that it would rain so that you can enjoy a good book with a cup of tea while you sit comfortably by the window..
Reading Malinky Robot is like having the rain just outside your window every time you flip through the pages.

The man with the Midas touch has created Malinky Robot, a treasure beyond it's gorgeously rendered and painfully beautiful line work. You wouldn't think that it is fair that something so aesthetically pleasing should pair with such intelligence. Lavish and important messages are swiftly slipped under the covers of stunning and winsome artwork, delivered to you page by page just there for you to grasp and deliberate at your own will. You can simply choose to salivate and gawk at the talent behind the masterful drawings or delve deeper into the sweet undertones of a slightly more serious message that leaves you pensive and just slightly sad, albeit in a nostalgic kind of way. Perhaps it was the aptly chosen muted colour scheme or perhaps it was the rawness of the pencils that accentuated the very essence of my love for Atari and Oliver and makes one feel slightly over-protective over them.

Reading it for the 101th time, I can't help but be reminded of the film Tekkonkinkreet. Malinky Robot however, has a softer and smoother deliverance that leaves you wondering how does one manage to suavely punctuate each chapter with such an impact on the reader. There's just simply this ethereal element that holds the entire book together. I've always marveled at how grown artists are able to recall what the essence of childhood felt like and how they are able to conjure that effervescence of naivety again on paper so that everyone else can feel and remember it too.
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