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My Faith in Frankie Paperback – November 1, 2004
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From Publishers Weekly
This delightful, theological satire-as-romantic comedy follows Frankie Moxon, an adorable 17-year-old with a religion of her own. She's the sole worshipper of a god named Jeriven, who's protected her since infancy from all sorts of dangers—especially boys. Jeriven, however, is a jealous god, a trait that becomes evident just as Frankie starts developing some distinctly secular interests. When a handsome young man named Dean (whom Jeriven once raised from the dead at Frankie's insistence) steals Frankie's heart and her faith, the divine jiltee returns to the heavens ("Hast thou ever done it as a swan?" his father booms at him) to plot his vengeance, which involves Frankie's best friend, who's got her own plans for Dean. But there's more to Frankie's new beau than first appears, and the romantic quadrangle becomes a war in the underworld. Liew and Hempel's art—in roughly the style Hempel used for The Sandman: The Kindly Ones—is loose, frothy and charming; originally in color, its bold designs still look good in b&w, especially in the series of "Frankie & Her Pals" kiddie-comic pastiches interspersed through the main story. But Lucifer/Hellblazer writer Carey's deft, fast-moving story is really the draw here: it's a fabulously original riff on monotheism and polysexuality, and its comedic value grows steadily until the final, riotous payoff. (Nov.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Gr. 9-12. In this delightfully offbeat, graphic novel riff on the theme of good versus evil, 17-year-old Frankie is the lone (but far from lonely) young woman who worships the god Jeriven. Fast-paced chapters recollect Jeriven's evolution as a divinity and introduce bad boy Dean, who proves to be not just a sexpot but also a dead and deadly demon. The black-and-gray images bounce with energy as they reflect the many moods of the piece. There is plenty of pure silliness, as well as scary passes through hell, childlike scribblings, and pretty settings. In addition, Frankie's story asks some provocative questions--among them, How responsible are we for our own spiritual devotion?--and its ending has a clever twist that makes the droll tale not only feminist friendly but gay friendly, as well. In Carey and Liew's hands, faith has a lot of potential and potency! Francisca Goldsmith
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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There's a lot to say about this story, and 100% of it is good. Sadly, the same can not be said for the trade, but I'll get to that in a bit. Mike Carey (writer of Lucifer and one of the best Hellblazer runs yet) shows a comedic side here that I'd never before thought he would have had. Each of the four main characters (Frankie's friend Kay rounding out the group) have distinct personalities and are a treat to read, as well as look at, thanks to Sonny Liew and Marc Hampel. The art is fun and a bit cartoonishly-stylized, but fits so perfectly with the tone of the story that I couldn't imagine anyone else handling artistic chores. My only solid complaint is the packaging (otherwise this is a six star book; the story is that good). First off, this book is shrunk to digest size, making it cheaper but condensing the art, something I don't like but am not that bothered by. However, the powers that be also decided to remove the colour from the book, making it black and white, This robs the story of a lot of the character it had in single issue form. Hopefully Vertigo will one day put out a full-sized colour version.
Should you buy this book? Despite the minor format complaints (which if you hadn't read in singles probably won't bother you), this is one of the most endearing stories I've ever read. It's fun and engrossing and just amazing. My Faith in Frankie is also a great way to read comics for those who buy into the stereotype that all comics are kids stuff, or are about tights and capes. Imaginative, humourous, and heartwarming, there's no reason you shouldn't have stopped reading this ages ago and ordered that book!
I'd love to have this in a nicer, larger format, with the original color. The artwork as it is is still fantastic - There are all sorts of influences in it, from chibi manga to styles of Rackham and Vess to cartoonish exaggerations.