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12 Reason Why I Love Her: Tenth Anniversary Edition Hardcover – Deluxe Edition, March 1, 2016
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From Publishers Weekly
Gwen and Evan meet at a sold-out premiere of an indie art film. Their romance starts out disastrously, but both feel a spark of something they're unwilling to let go of. So far the synopsis is no different from dozens of other romantic comedies, but instead of following the formula, Rich and Jones tell the story of the romance in 12 out-of-order snapshots. Some focus on the pivotal moments of their relationship—the first date, the first argument—others on the quiet connections that keep them together. The art's bold lines always draw attention to the emotions, setting the characters sometimes in detailed New York scenery, sometimes against stark black and white backgrounds. Some chapters use softer, full-page drawings to stop time entirely and focus on Gwen as seen through Evan's eyes. The nonlinear structure is diverting, but it imposes a sentimental nostalgia onto a story without enough meat to support it. Before the moments of real drama can be fully explored, the story jumps to a completely different time period. This graphic novel is a sweet little nugget of romance, but there isn't quite enough development for it to be satisfying. (Nov.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
From the Publisher
"Gwen and Evan's story is told in 12 vignettes, which are not delivered in chronological order. It's an effective... means of tracking the course of their romance because we sometimes see the resolution of their arguments before we understand the pettiness that provoked them. For all the young (and young at heart) lovers in the audience, there's a marvelous lesson in that... I can't think of a better Christmas present for quite a few people on my list."
"12 Reasons Why I Love Her takes a nuanced view of the highs and lows of romance, trading fairy tale fantasies for the peaks and valleys of a real relationship. The bittersweet, perfectly ambiguous climax allows an adult male to justify reading a "romance comic" without hiding from public view."
"This is one of [artist Joelle] Jones's first published works, and it's remarkably, consistently dazzling. Her style is an intriguing blend of heightened realism and cartoonish exaggeration, with just a hint of manga flavoring."
"12 Reasons Why I Love Her is the kind of book you'd get if Margaret Atwood came from the Hipster generation"
Eye On Comics:
"The banter between the pair is entertaining and perfect, but there's also an awkwardness in the script at times that really drives home a genuine sound and brings credibility to the characters."
"12 Reasons Why I Love Her has a lot going for it. Jamie S. Rich and Joelle Jones have carefully crafted something that feels very real."
Comics Waiting Room:
"I'm a sucker for a good romance comic, and no one seems to be doing better ones these days than Jamie S. Rich."
"Jamie S. Rich is becoming known for his great work in romantic fiction, and this book is certainly no exception. 12 Reasons Why I Love Her is a visually pleasing and emotionally moving book for which any lover of contemporary romance will fall head over heels."
Read About Comics:
"Rich's writing in 12 Reasons Why I Love Her shows a real understanding of how people interact. In some ways, reading the graphic novel is a voyeuristic process because Rich doesn't hold anything back in his showing the ups and downs in Gwen and Evan's relationship. From raw emotion to carefully phrased responses, every word and action rings true here." --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Universality - 5 out of 5 stars
Recommendability to a friend - 5 out of 5 stars
Creativity - 5 out of 5 stars
Unformulaicness - 5 out of 5 stars
Visual beauty - 5 out of 5 stars
Insightfulness - 5 out of 5 stars
I scan through several hundred comics every month in Previews, trying to decide what to buy. This cover & title jumped out at me. While I am not a regular reader of this graphic novel genre, this design was compelling, and I ordered the book. I am writing this review with one hand behind my back, because as you will understand after reading the book, I can't really review it completely without giving away the plot flow and conclusion. It would kind of be like trying to write a review about "The 6th Sense" without commenting on the fact that Bruce Willis is dead throughout most of the movie (You have seen The 6th Sense? Right? Please tell me I didn't just ruin that for you.) How do you review a book like this without disarming the artists' intended effect? Since it is a new book, I don't want to spoil anything for anyone. I apologize for the mystery. So instead of a normal review, I will just mention a couple responsive thoughts that came to mind after reading the book.
The book reveals issues that arise when a person chooses that one special person to spend the rest of their life with.
Love is sometimes an emotional and intellectual drive that inspires us beyond our initial ideas and boundaries in search of ways to create long term healthy rapport with others. Self-selected morals and boundaries that disable that drive tend to limit our ability to experience, recognize, maintain, and grow love that is often near to us.
Each of the 12 chapters of the book cover an important scene in the relationship between the two main characters. The realistic dialogs written by Jamie Rich and the emotions carried by Joelle Jones' art make all of these scenes special.
An excellent book for people who like to "piece of life" stories.
Sure, Rich's writing is worthy, and his words articulate Gwen's quick wit, intelligence, and vulnerability, adding substantially to her compelling feminine appeal. And the writing seems to mesh very nicely with Jones's drawings.
Yet there can be no doubt that Joelle Jones's images of Gwen are the powerful "Je ne sais quoi" behind this book's ability to captivate. Having said that I wonder if it's no coincidence that all of the four reviewers so far have been males. Gwen is the kind of woman with whom that crude little voice in the back of the male brain says quite uncharacteristically, "I'd really like to take a bath with this girl."
So, if you are a romantic and/or an artist of either gender, do yourself a little favor and get yourself a copy. And check out Joelle Jones's website. I was very pleased to find that her wonderful art is readily accessible, including images from "12 Reasons."
After getting to the end I was disappointed feeling disjointed I put it down.
I decided to begin again and try over. Let me tell you, I was not disappointed. "Twelve Reasons I Love Her" is a fantastic graphic novel, with deep characterizations, you can see why the main character falls in love. And like any great art, it helps you understand the world within you.