Graphic Novel Review: The Sigh

Writer: Marjane Satrapi

Artist: Marjane Satrapi

Publisher: Archaia Entertainment

Website: www.archaia.com

By Nolan Patrick Smith

(Victor Valley)–Marjane Satrapi is no stranger to the world of graphic novels: her autobiographical graphic novel, Persepolis, was a massive hit that earned the writer/artist many accolades. Marjane is back with another graphic novel, but this time the story plays out more like a fairy tale, with undertones of values for all to see. Also, saying this is a graphic novel in the truest sense may not do it justice, as it is more like a fairy tale book, with text and illustrations accompanying each other.

Story: The story focuses on Rose, one of three daughters of a traveling merchant. All three daughters ask for a gift from their father while on his journeys, with Rose asking for a blue bean. When the father returns, he has all the gifts except for the bean, which he could not find. Rose lets out a sigh in disappointment, which brings a strange character to the house. Known as The Sign, he tells the father he has a blue bean, and that he will ask for a favor in return one day. Elated, the father gladly accepts, not knowing that he just changed Rose’s life forever. The Sigh comes a year later to take Rose away to his land, in which Rose grudgingly goes and sees a whole new world and life for it.

The story touches on many morals that all can benefit from: from learning that nothing comes free and that everything has a price to seeing that what is on the outside doesn’t equal whom someone is inside. A wonderfully, concise story with elements of darkness and surprise, Marjane has once again crafted a tale that will live on in our minds, being enjoyable for our youth and adults alike.

Art: Marjane, who does a good job in bringing visual aides to this extremely visual tale, also provides the artwork as well as being the author. As I said before, this book is not your traditional graphic novel, as it doesn’t have panels and text transposed over it. It’s more like Graphic Fiction, with pages of text accompanied by color illustrations to help convey the scene.

Overall: When I first saw the cover for The Sigh, I had no idea what to expect. I didn’t research what it was about, or even the format it was in. I lost some interest in the book when I initially saw it was not really a graphic novel in the way most of us know them as, but after reading a few pages I was hooked. A light, short story with some edgier content and a great meaning, I see The Sigh pleasing people of all ages.  Highly Recommended, I give The Sigh a **** out of 5.

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