On Loving Women is a real treat for readers of every sexual orientation and it will undoubtedly become a touchstone of queer comics and Canadian graphic non-fiction.Candida Rifkind, Winnipeg Free Press
Intimate vignettes of women coming out
On Loving Women is a new collection of stories about coming out, first love, and sexual identity by the animator Diane Obomsawin. With this work, Obomsawin brings her gaze to bear on subjects closer to home—her friends’ and lovers’ personal accounts of realizing they’re gay or first finding love with another woman. Each story is a master class in reaching the emotional truth of a situation with the simplest means possible. Her stripped-down pages use the bare minimum of linework to expressively reveal heartbreak, joy, irritation, and fear.
On Loving Women focuses primarily on adolescence—crushes on high school teachers, awkwardness on first dates—but also addresses much deeper-seated difficulties of being out: fears of rejection and of not being who others want one to be. Within these pages, Obomsawin has forged a poignant, powerful narrative that speaks to the difficulties of coming out and the joys of being loved.
Her first English-language work, Kaspar—a retelling of the life of Kaspar Hauser, the mysterious German youth who was raised in isolation and murdered just a few years after emerging from his imprisonment—was critically lauded for its simple but expressive storytelling, and for the way it portrayed traumatic material compassionately but without self-indulgence.
On Loving Women has been translated from the French by Helge Dascher. Dascher has been translating graphic novels from French and German to English for over twenty years. A contributor to Drawn & Quarterly since the early days, her translations include acclaimed titles such as the Aya series by Marguerite Abouet and Clément Oubrerie, Hostage by Guy Delisle, and Beautiful Darkness by Fabien Vehlmann and Kerascoët. With a background in art history and history, she also translates books and exhibitions for museums in North America and Europe. She lives in Montreal.
Praise for On Loving Women
…An unshakeable cool suffuses Obomsawin's every line, denying drama. She situates each story in the same hushed, largely vacant space, one that's open to the quietest emotions. Like adolescence itself, this land is both mysterious and full of endless possibilities. She doesn't push toward the highs and lows, but leaves her reader to find them. Or, rather, she creates a world where they can be found.NPR
On Loving Women is in turns wistful, sexy, goofy, bittersweet, frank, and adorable. Diane Obomsawin’s deceptively simple lifework and straightforward writing style capture the breathless sweetness of holding another girl’s hand for the first time, and the happy, lusty intimacy of a virginity-ending, drunken threesome. Delightful.Ellen Forney
To every reader who has been in love, if even for a moment, [Diane Obomsawin’s] work confirms this: if it meant the world at the time, it should mean the world in your memory.Amy Blackmore, Cleaver Magazine
On Loving Women… perfectly captures coming out and first love… Each individual chapter feels like peeking into someone’s personal diary, each story more entrancing than the last.Sarah Karlan, Buzzfeed
[On Loving Women]…simply yet beautifully portrays the coming out stories of nine women, all friends or ex-lovers of the author…Ana Benaroya, Book By Its Cover
On Loving Women… manages to convey complex emotional truths and heartwarming (or heartbreaking) situations. Love. Rejection. Sex. Longing. It’s all there.Malaika Aleba, Autostraddle
Coming out, the first kiss, and having the right sex for the first time has never felt so awesomely universal.Sarah Marloff, Austin Chronicle