jesse_the_k: amazed Alanna (hero of Staples/Vaughn SAGA comic) (alanna is amazed)
I first saw Fies' work with Mom's Cancer, a sweet and terrifying tour of hope and loss (now available free online):

He and his wife just lost almost everything in the Santa Rosa fires blazing in central California, and he's made an almost instantaneous comic about it:

A Fire Story.
(thanks to [personal profile] umadoshi for the link)

I've started to make a transcript/image description:

Ping me here if you'd like to help create this.
jesse_the_k: amazed Alanna (hero of Staples/Vaughn SAGA comic) (alanna is amazed)

Out on the Wire by Jessica Abel - 4 of 5 stars

review )

IRMINA by Barbara Yelin 5 of 5 stars

more inside )

The Best We Could Do by Thi Bui - 4 of 5 stars

read why it's great )

Diabetes and Me by Challoner & Bertozzi - 2 of 5 stars

a disappointment )

A Chinese Life by Li Kunwu & Phillipe Otié - 5 of 5 stars

great book and personally meaningful )

VISION (volumes 1 & 2) by Tom King / Gabriel Hernandez Walta / Jordie Bellaire - 4 of 5 stars

Pure pleasure )

jesse_the_k: amazed Alanna (hero of Staples/Vaughn SAGA comic) (alanna is amazed)

Transcendent: the Year's Best Transgender Speculative Fiction ed. by K.M. Szpara 5 of 5 stars )

Trish Trash Roller Girl of Mars, vol 1 by Jessica Abel (4 of 5 stars) )

jesse_the_k: White woman with glasses laughing under large straw hat (JK 52 happy hat)

Very silly joke collection on Metafilter

Want to know all the shows coming to Hulu in a month? See their press releases here:

A beautiful comic that meditates on cultural artifacts and a hyphenated Japanese-American identity:

jesse_the_k: Rodney gestures triumphantly (sga Rodney pwns again)
Thankfully I've had a good summer free of nondisabled people annoying me about my health. These folks provide insight and great comebacks.

Hank Green, one progenitor of the internet-based social movement, Don't Forget to be Awesome, has ulcerative colitis. Just like the rest of us with chronic illnesses, he's received years of unsolicited advice for better living without pain: more gluten, less gluten, fish oil, motor oil. In this captioned video, he identifies how and why those intrusive suggestions make him feel like his illness is his own fault.
embedded video here )

From [ profile] genericlottery, a comic strip exposing a common workplace issue: description here )
View original at

From [ profile] disabilityhealth
In carefully set type these words to live by:
"I don't think you look disabled"
I don't think you look qualified to make that assessment.

View original at
jesse_the_k: Sketch of pair of hands captioned "If you're OCD and you know it wash your hands" (OCD handwasher)
The Bad Doctor—Ian Williams5 of 5 )

Read if ... You're curious about mundane details of an NHS doctor's life, recreational cycling, OCD, or life in Wales.

Avoid if ... You dislike satanic panic, suicidal ideation, or enactments of OCD

Author website:
available in print, PDF, Sequential format for iPad

jesse_the_k: Closeup medical drawing of an eye where lower lashes are four fingers crawling up over the lower lid (hand eye comic)
In my last post I neglected to include my single #1 fave online disability-culture resource:
It's multimedia goodness—in addition to pix & reviews, the Graphic Medicine site offers a podcast.

There are many places to read about the social construction of disability. I treasure this site because it helps me understand impairment, and the social construction of medicine.

let me recommend this site to you )
jesse_the_k: Hands open print book with right side hollowed out to hole iPod (Alt format reader)
For people with reading impairments, a crucial accommodation is text describing any meaningful visual information. In braille, it's mandatory. On the net, it's required by the US and WC3 accessibility standards.

You can attach this info to an image with HTML commands. But it's simpler to type it out in a paragraph before or after the image. Many people using slow internet or older feature phones turn off images to speed up loading, so text descriptions also serve these users.
I'm posting for two reasons:

1. I adore the comic and it has already changed how I think and speak. I had to write this description to post it and wanted to make the description available for others.

2. I want to encourage discussion, comments, criticism, suggestions on the utility and accuracy of this description. So comment and signal boost away!

[ profile] yaoxiaoart created this fabulous comic, and it was the #3 post on Austraddle for all 2015. For those of us with vision issues, slow net, or feature phones, I describe it here. The visual art is linked at the end.
#BAOPU15 Yao Xia from Autostraddle )
If you want to say thank you )

More great art at
jesse_the_k: those words in red on white sign (be aware of invisibility)
Work reviewed demonstrates child abuse )

description in caption
Willies by Jesse Reklaw: Five tan beasties, a mix of dog, meerkat and seal, with no hair but white mustaches.
jesse_the_k: Red leaf from a pin oak tree (pin oak leaf)
This morning I sat down to breakfast and couldn't move until I finished the first half of Gene Luen Yang's latest graphic work: Boxers. It's a beautiful, gripping, detailed story of the Boxer Rebellion in China. Responding to 100 years of colonialism and war, and ignited by terrible famine and drought, an army of teenagers took their inspiration from the Chinese Opera. They create a ritual to make themselves invincible wuxia fighters, kill white Christian missionaries and Chinese Christian converts, and eventually meet their foes in Beijing.

As Yang makes evident in beautiful line and color, the Chinese Opera inspired the hungry kids just as Superman (among others) cheered WWII soldiers.

Now on to the companion book, Saints, which examines the same events from the Christians' point of view.

10 out of 10 stars.
jesse_the_k: Perfectly circlular white brain-like fungus growing on oak tree (Default)
Rachel Hartman's fabulous comic book Belondweg Blossoming is so wonderful you should rush right out and read it today. It is, sadly, out of print, but available at libraries and many used booksellers. It's set in the generic 13th century British fairy tale milieu, but the heroes do the sorts of things I find heroic — take care of each other; accept the more difficult path for the greater good; face up to lies told and return to straighten things out. One of the principal themes is what women's lives are like when they can't own property. A truly life-changing gift for a girl approaching menarche: I think it's important for all women to understand how far we've come.

This reviewer provides a much better description than I can. Hartman was drawing at GirlAMatic for a while, so you can admire her excellent drafting and elastic fiddling with narrative conventions in Return of the Mad Bun
jesse_the_k: The words "Indecision may or may not be my problem" over a blurry background (Indecision)
Everything You Never Wanted to Know About Crohn's Disease is a web comic created in 24 hours. It's informative, sad, and effective.

Packing up my studio for the trip back south used up all of my energy for the next while. I hope a further report will issue forth shortly.
jesse_the_k: Panda doll wearing black eye mask, hands up in the spotlight, dropping money bag on floor  (bandit panda)
Effing Dykes, which has a few tasty, er um, tasteful bare breasts so may not be S for your W, is really really good today.

In our moment of direst need, the customer service person from the other side of the world channels truth direct to the cell phone in our hand!

Go! Read! Laugh!
jesse_the_k: Photo of baby wearing huge black glasses  (eyeglasses baby)
Just finished Joe Sacco's Palestine, graphic non-fiction about Intifada I. As with all his work, the narrative is honestly brutal and the drawings squirm with detail. I wholeheartedly recommend all his "comic books" (his preferred term). At Mother Jones, when he talks about his latest, Footnotes in Gaza, he explains why graphic non-fiction can sometimes tell a story better than words alone:
 begin quote  But one of the advantages of comics is that you're drawing frame after frame after frame, so almost in the background scenes you can create this atmosphere that's following the reader around, that doesn't necessarily relate to the foreground action but is somehow always present. For example, the way the buildings look—I can show that over and over again in the background, so in some ways I think you can really put the reader in that place, just with all these repeated images. If there's mud in the background, you can show that in every frame, so the mud is following the reader around. If you're a prose writer, really what you're doing is just mentioning it once, you're not going to keep mentioning it ever few lines—"and by the way, it was really muddy." So it's this constant reminder of what the place looks like. quote ends 
jesse_the_k: Photo of baby wearing huge black glasses  (eyeglasses baby)
by David Small
W.W.Norton, 2009

This 300-page graphic novel is a shatteringly creepy memoir. David Small's physician father, following the medical wisdom of the time, irradiated him many times for "sinus trouble." A colleague noticed a growth on his neck at age 11, but the family dynamic was so nonfunctional that no doctor checked this out until age 14, when the tumor, his thyroid and one vocal fold were removed.

The family didn't tell him that he'd been treated for cancer. That silence is mirrored in his own inability to speak until the vocal fold regrew some 15 years later.

Yeah, my mind boggled too. This beautifully drawn book really does evoke Hitchcock and Orson Welles in story and presentation. So the author's self-aggrandizing in this YouTube video isn't hyperbolic.
jesse_the_k: Perfectly circlular white brain-like fungus growing on oak tree (Default)
Hamlet: A Graphic Adaptation by Neil Babra is wonderful! Shakespeare's play is a great horror story, and Babra's drawings truly complement and support the text—check out these samples .

This "No Fear Shakespeare" graphic novel is part of Buns & Noodle's SparkNotes study guide empire, so almost half of the play is restated in "everyday English." Babra wisely restored much of the most understandable original. I've seen & read the play several times, and I still learned things—especially because this edition is entire, with none of the cuts made for most productions.

While anyone interested in Hamlet will love this graphic novel, I particularly commend it as a gateway drug for first-time Shakespeare readers.


Sep. 7th, 2008 05:39 pm
jesse_the_k: Perfectly circlular white brain-like fungus growing on oak tree (expectant)
...was a beautiful movie. Not perfect: the overwhelming whiteness of life-on-the-hive-ship was jarring, and the conflation of disability, power mobility, obesity, and moral laxness was infuriating. But the good bits were gorgeous, elegant, dreamy, awe-inspiring.

The Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac news is veryconfusing. I'm a total illiterate when it comes to economics. I'm trying to decode this NPR primer on the next big crash.


Aug. 14th, 2008 08:40 am
jesse_the_k: Perfectly circlular white brain-like fungus growing on oak tree (focused eyeball)
Excellent drawings, challenging text:
Incognegro by Mat Johnson & Warren Pleece, Vertigo/DC Comics 2008.

A fictional tale of two African-American men who can pass as white. They travel from Harlem to Mississippi to rescue a relative from lynching, with mixed success. Powerfully evokes the "family carnival" atmosphere attendant on lynching, while also exploring women who pass as men.

The ethics of those who can or do pass can divide identity communities, and seems to be a universal issue, even as it's highly particular in each of those cultures.
jesse_the_k: Pill Headed Stick Person (pill head)
Three things make a post:

Spike's black-and-white Lucas & Odessa, which is no longer online, was why I got PayPal. I'm sad L+O isn't there, because fat, 16, angst-ridden Odessa pinged my marrow. All of Sparkneedle is still there and this entirely non-verbal hallucination speaks directly to my imagination with no apparent cognitive filter. Now I can catch up with Templar Arizona.

Jessica Abel co-wrote Life Sucks, about schlumpy vampires created to staff a stop&rob convenience store by its ancient Romanian owner. Oh yeah -- it's the logical outcome of Harvey-Pekar/Buffy trainwreck. Very funny, but nowhere near as profound as La Perdida, but then, not much is.

Reading comics : how graphic novels work and what they mean by Douglas Wolk is art history + literary criticism. The first half is Theory & History and I couldn't put it down. Though I did start with floppy Archie comics as a kidlet, I've been pretty much a graphic-novel snob for the past two decades. The context Wolk provides for the spandex world finally helps me get them for the first time. The second half are essays/reviews on twenty-one important comics producers (that darn Alan Moore again, prevents one from simply writing "artists"). Wolk cautions they're not a 21 best, but 21 folks whose works sparked thoughts. There's plenty I disagree with, but the essays are well-written, considered, and fun. I'm gobsmacked that lit-crit could be a page-turner, but then, it's comics!

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jesse_the_k: Perfectly circlular white brain-like fungus growing on oak tree (Default)
Jesse the K

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