RED COLORED ELEGY reviewed by Book By Its Cover

“Red Colored Elegy” / Book By Its Cover / Julia Rothman / October 19, 2008

I have seen this striking cover around and always wondered what was inside. Thanks to Drawn & Quarterly who sent this book over so I could see. Turns out it’s an underground Japanese comic written in 1970 about two young loves, animators Ichiro and Sachiko. Sachiko is living with Ichiro and trying to avoid her arranged marriage. Together they drink and smoke and make love. But they have issues which they cannot get rid of. The drawings are so simple and stylistically graphic and really quite beautiful. The story is told through short almost abstract scenes with very little dialogue. Instead small actions like the movement of hands or the sitting positions of characters show the emotions. It’s one of those comics where you really do need the pictures to help you figure out what’s going on.

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