Books aren’t groceries, granted, but Buy Local is still a philosophy that Montreal literati could follow with confidence this year.
So strong has the local crop been that you could make a very legitimate Best of 2014 list without stretching beyond the city’s writers and related stories. And you’d still be torn with regret at the things you’ve had to leave out. So, mostly, that is what you’ll see here. Regret included.
The graphic novel – let’s agree, for convenience’s sake, that the term is not limited to fiction – is a form of visual storytelling that lends itself particularly well to intimate personal memoir. Over Easy by Mimi Pond follows a struggling art student in 1970s California as she attempts to pay her way through school by waitressing in an Oakland greasy spoon. A setup that might have descended into sitcom cliché instead achieves real poignancy and lyricism through the quality of Pond’s observation and the charm of her drawings.