The National Post reviews Spaniel Rage

“Vanessa Davis’s Spaniel Rage is an awkwardly intimate, poignantly familiar portrait of life as a woman in the big city” / the National Post / Sadaf Ahsan / March 2, 2017

“Spaniel rage” is a term often associated with the English Cocker Spaniel and its tendency to erupt into aggressive attack mode, but minutes later, return to a serene calmness.

In Vanessa Davis’s Spaniel Rage, a collection of autobiographical comics, the award-winning cartoonist weaves relatable stories of life as a woman navigating New York, the dating world, anxiety, family and friends – while flitting between extreme emotions and casual moods, much like your average English Cocker Spaniel.

Davis creates awkwardly intimate but oddly familiar drawings of not just women’s bodies, but their innermost thoughts, some as casual as the joy of wearing dirty underwear and the fear of leering men on the subway, and as serious as understanding the death of her father through the family cat’s daily behaviour.

Originally published a decade ago, Drawn & Quarterly is giving the collection a reissue, with its frank but funny, free-form drawings suggesting a level of catharsis for Davis, and therapy for its reader.

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