by Thorina Rose
Thorina is a loving mother of two boys living in San Francisco, California. Her husband, a photographer, has recently taken up running, a hobby Thorina supports until she finds out he’s running straight into the arms of another woman! Heartbroken, Thorina tries everything she can think of to make the marriage work, but to no avail. Her husband leaves and Thorina must put the shattered pieces of her life back together.
At first this may seem like a story oft-told, but Thorina makes her story new by utilizing the graphic novel format. Her loose and free-flowing sketches illustrate her story without rigid panels, and the handwritten captions and dialogue give it the feel of a diary. Emotions are perfectly captured in black and white: tear-stained faces, a mother’s love for her children, and the guilt of the “other woman.” Interspersed with revenge fantasies and struggles in counseling are quotes and portraits from famous women as varied as Coco Chanel, Eleanor Roosevelt and Ella Fitzgerald.
Tagged as “a story of family, fidelity, and starting over” The Heartbreak Diet delivers on that promise with gentle humor and obvious affection. For Thorina Rose, this graphic novel may have been quite therapeutic as well as a work of love. Her story may not be unique, but it is empowering to hold the end result of her experiences in your hands and know that she made it through her bad time with her head held high. It’s a highly effective graphic novel and would be an excellent introduction for someone unfamiliar or unused to the format.
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