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Heartbreak Soup (Love & Rockets) Paperback – March 17, 2007

4.8 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“I don’t really understand why the material of Love and Rockets isn’t widely regarded as one of the finest pieces of fiction of the last 35 years. Because it is.” (Neal Gaiman)

“The Love and Rockets reprints may be my favorite publishing project of the last five years, and there are a lot of fine projects going on... the smaller, bargain-priced volumes [are] the perfect vehicle for that material, the best comics series of all time.” (Tom Spurgeon - The Comics Reporter)

“An addictive soap opera, replete with humor and heart.” (The Washington Post)

About the Author

Gilbert Hernandez lives in Las Vegas, NV, with his wife and daughter. He is co-creator of the long-running, award-winning, and critically acclaimed series Love and Rockets. His books include Chance in Hell, The Troublemakers, Luba, Palomar, Speak of the Devil, Sloth, The High Soft Lisp, Love from the Shadows, Girl Crazy, Yeah!, and many books in the Love and Rockets series.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Fantagraphics (March 17, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1560977833
  • ISBN-13: 978-1560977834
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 1 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #183,568 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

By P. Gurnamal on November 20, 2007
Format: Paperback
A surrealist, sometimes non-linear, story of generations of families in one small, Mexican town. I would say that it felt like I was reading something akin to Gabrieal Garcia Marquez's One Hundred Years of Solitude in comic form. I loved it.
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I had to read this graphic novel for one of my American Literature Graduate Seminars. I easily enjoyed it!

Gilbert Hernandez’s characters in "Heartbreak Soup" first appear to represent typical Latino/a stereotypes, but these stereotypes are almost always subverted in his narratives because although they are familiar, Hernandez’s characters are richly complex. By re-presenting how both Latino and Latina characters behave and are perceived in public and private spaces, Hernandez’s Heartbreak Soup subverts and demystifies not only Latino/Latina stereotypes but gender stereotypes as well. This re-presentation brings out complexity and depth in the characters making it difficult for the reader to categorize or read these characters as just mere stereotypes.

Whether it is the Latin Lover, the Spitfire, or the Macho man, Gilbert Hernandez’s Heartbreak Soup manages to bring complexity to these characters. The graphic novel takes many familiar archetypes turned into stereotypes by Hollywood and popular culture and adds very real humanistic components to them. In doing so, the reader’s own perceptions, and perhaps subscriptions to certain stereotypes, are dispelled and subverted. The graphic novel both familiarizes and de-familiarizes the reader to portrayals Latino and Latina in popular culture making it difficult for readers to simply categorize many of its characters. The characters in Heartbreak Soup are certainly more “real” than most characters in Hollywood film and television, and are more accurate representations of not only Latino and Latinas but human beings as well.
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Format: Paperback
Moving back and forth in time, spanning approximately 20 years, this book represents an epic in storytelling. Set in the isolated town of Palomer it moves back and forth through time telling different stories of the residents in their youth and their adulthood. Starting with a prologue about the town midwife and how she helped birth most of the children and watched them grow up. It sets up the first story in which you think that Soledad and Manuel are going to be the main characters of the entire book, but it becomes a self-contained narrative about their positions in the town and their unspoken love that ends tragically even as they circle each other. The next story skips years into the future and you see the kids who are hanging out and being punks as grown men trying to figure out their lives and deal with their wives as well as the children that keep showing up.

What makes this book so amazing is the way it can seamlessly move from one character to the other, showing everyone from a multitude of perspectives filling in blanks left from previous stories and yet keeping some mysteries intact. The only criticism I can make concerns the way certain characters don't seem to age - particularly Luba who looks like Sophia Lauren in her 20s throughout the book. Still that's a very minor quibbling and for a book that succeeds in being the graphic novel tribute to One Hundred Years of Solitude (P.S.) its not important in the overall enjoyment.
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