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Susceptible Hardcover – February 19, 2013


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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

In a series of spare first-person vignettes, Castrée pieces together the difficult childhood of Goglu, a French Canadian girl who lives with her alcoholic, self-destructive mother and distant, resentful stepfather. Goglu—tomboyish and with a perpetual self-conscious blush—strains against the influence of her genes, wondering where her own deep sadness comes from and hoping that she won’t succumb to the same troublesome lifestyle of her mother, who is desperate for her daughter’s attention and beset by manic episodes. As Goglu gets older, she seeks refuge in punk rock and drugs, but the strain of her destructive home life becomes too much to bear and she escapes to live with her biological father in Vancouver. Castrée’s black-and-white, Scarryesque illustrations accompany tiny, precise cursive lettering that gives the whole work a whispered, confessional quality, as if each word were an embarrassing secret. At times, Goglu’s story is overwhelmingly, heartbreakingly sad, but Castrée leaves a glimmer of hope: a redemptive future shaped by art, independence, and unconditional love. --Sarah Hunter

Review

“[Susceptible]’s pervasive melancholy is still lingering with me, a reminder of why we really read: to feel things besides our own emotions.” —Paris Review

“[Susceptible is] a devastating coming-of-age graphic memoir.” —CBC

“Castrée’s black-and-white, Scarryesque illustrations accompany tiny, precise cursive lettering that gives the whole work a whispered, confessional quality, as if each word were an embarrassing secret. At times, Goglu’s story is overwhelmingly, heartbreakingly sad, but Castrée leaves a glimmer of hope: a redemptive future shaped by art, independence, and unconditional love.” —Booklist
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 80 pages
  • Publisher: Drawn and Quarterly (February 19, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1770460888
  • ISBN-13: 978-1770460881
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 0.5 x 9.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #521,182 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Pizza on February 24, 2013
Format: Hardcover
This long-awaited work from multi-talented artist & musician Geneviève Castrée is simply gorgeous. It's a step away from Castree's more poetic and metaphorical works like the previous Tout Seul Dans la Forêt en Plein Jour, Avez-Vous Peur? [Vinyl] but the more directly narrative approach is well-suited to her talents. This book displays an ambition, a subtle politics, and depth of emotion that many autobiographical comics lack. It's funny, tender, emotionally gripping and honest about the darker parts of childhood. And the art is peerless; every delicate line seems infused with subtlety and grace.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By GraphicNovelReporter.com on September 27, 2013
Format: Hardcover
We follow Goglu from a very young age up to her teen years in this often heartbreaking debut from Genevieve Castree, who writes and illustrates with soft, subtle restraint.

Goglu is just barely out of diapers when she begins to learn of her mother's drinking...and how to handle it. She and her mother are living in Quebec with her mother's boyfriend, while her father is thousands of miles away in British Columbia. There's quite a bit of pain tucked away in Castree's sparse panels, in which she beautifully captures the oddness and bewilderment of a childhood spent overcompensating for irresponsible adults.

Goglu is a daydreamer, and quite smart as well. She is tough and opinionated. Fascinatingly, she wonders about her own tendencies toward being drawn to sadness. It's something she struggles with, and she reflects on it often. Is she susceptible to it, as the title suggests? Or is she strong enough to become her own person?

Susceptible is only 75 pages, but it's one of those books that feels twice as long. The story is gripping and powerful, without dwelling in morbidity. Instead, it's a rather impressive debut that offers hope amidst its hard-hitting narrative.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Suzy-Q on March 30, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
After reading a favorable review of this book in my city's newspaper, my interest was elevated and I decided to order "Susceptible" for my 18-year-old daughter who is a fan of graphic novels and any novel that challenges and enlarges the reader's view of the world. She loved it (as did I) and is now passing it on to her friend. This graphic novel captures the isolation of growing up for main character, Goglu. Each page details Goglu's difficulty in maturing through life's stages with her family and friends. Eventually, Goglu does find a sense of her own identity and as a reader, I rejoiced with this fact. This graphic novel does not focus on fantasy for its plot but rather on real-world actions and consequences. What an interesting read this book weaved from beginning to end. The illustrations are absolutely essential and supportive of the narrative. Don't miss reading author Genevieve Castree's "Susceptible".
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J. on March 23, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I enjoyed this book and I think the art was excellent, but a clearer, more definitive ending would have been good.
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