There are many types of love in the world, and
this week's selection of sales runs the gamut. It specializes, though, in the
Forbidden kind, where the love of two characters is doomed to never work out.
In "Hearts at Sea," we see Jean-Paul face a mid-life crisis as a single man. He throws everything away, runs from the family toy business and his nagging mother, and hops on a singles cruise to look for love.
Creator Cyril Pedrosa may have made his name in more serious, contemplative books like "Portugal" and "Equinoxes," but "Hearts at Sea" is a lighter and more focused story. Unlike those other two books, he sticks to one style in it, and it happens to be his slickest, most animated one.
"The Forbidden Harbour" is a period drama from the turn of the 19th century. Teresa Radice's script centers on a teenager, Abel, who washes up on the beach without any memories. He's lost, curious, and confused. Yet he knows a lot about working on a ship and playing the fiddle.
Abel will eventually discover the truth about himself, setting him on a new course that ultimately dooms any relationship he might have.
It is a wild soap opera with lots of moving parts and some beautiful finished pencil work from Stefano Turconi. Even without the finishing inks, the story is easy to read and told with a lot of life and energy on every page. It's a nice pairing with Cyril Pedrosa's art in "Hearts at Sea." Both feel very "animated".
The two "Forbidden Harbour" books are more than 150 pages each, but the story is complete across the two of them.
Finally, Lepage's fully painted "Muchacho" tells the tale of another teenaged boy, Gabriel, in training for the priesthood. Given the "Forbidden Love" theme, you can immediately imagine his own sexual inexperience combined with an impending vow of chastity creating issues for him in this story, but that's just the start.
This two book series takes place in the jungles and mountains of Nicaragua in 1976, during the height of the Somoza regime. The rebel Sandinistas wouldn't topple it for a couple more years. In the meantime, Somoza's armed forces, the Guardia (The National Guard), were ruthless in keeping the population in line. That includes the village Gabriel is in, and some activities in his church, in particular.
Of the three books, this is the one whose theme of Forbidden Love is most explicit, owing mostly to the time and setting of the story.
As you can see in these selections, love can find you anywhere, from the jungles of Central America to seaports in England to a ship at sea. Pick your setting and enjoy!
By Augie De Blieck Jr.
From Pipeline Comics