Following an eighteen month relationship, that fell apart, “K” sets up a new single life complete with the idea of remaining alone. His roommate however, has different ideas and quicker than you can say “Sheldon, this is Amy Farrah-Fowler” he is registered on Love Bug, a dating site for the hip, the trendy and the uber busy. What follows are the trials and trepidations of dating, the euphoria of making a connection and the peaks and troughs of love, sex and the feelings that are created possibly, between two people.
I am a fan Koren Shadmi since reading The Abbadon last year. For those expecting a similar book, you may well be disappointed. Instead you are treated to a journey that nearly everyone can relate to. Sure, the way that “K” becomes an addict may seem extreme, but it is grounded in the real world as every new encounter seems to draw “K” away from his true purpose of finding love and replacing it with having sex; each time taking just a little bit more of his soul. There are warning signs along the way and like every true addict, there are reasoned away in effort to score a bigger high.
Shadmi’s writing is spot on. All the characters read like real characters. I will say that I didn’t think that “K” had a chance with some of the women he met. Still this does show that as Bruce the roommate says, that women look for the same thing as the guys. “K” moves from reluctant dater to arrogant Lothario in relatively short order, devising his own plan where as he used to debunk theLove Bug sites logarithms. The story reads so well, that I wonder if there is an autobiographical element to the storytelling.
This feeling is further strengthened by the art, in which “K” does look a little familiar. There is also a “Woody Allen-esque” sense to proceedings, with the art having a self-deprecating vibe, garnered from how great the girls look to how weedy and feeble “K” can seem. Shadmi’s history as an illustrator certainly shows as the book looks like a cartoon strip and if it wasn’t for all the sex you could be comparing the art style to something like Luann; simple lines giving enough details to allow familiar surrounds creating a world you instantly recognize. The colors, also by Shadmi, are strong throughout, helping create the seasons which in turn mirror “K”‘s journey.
This book is as different from Shadmi’s previous work as you can get. This is not a bad thing at all. In fact, with the subject matter being something that we should have had some sort of dealing with, the story is perhaps more accessible. “K” is an average guy with normal everyday needs, desires and problems. It’s a little refreshing to see that other people go through the same sort of emotional roller coaster as us. As such, Shadmi has tapped into the very scary situation of a person, or persons, putting themselves out there to be attracted, repulsed and judged by a complete stranger in the hopes that a connection is made in effort to have a partner in this thing called life.
Writing – 5 Stars
Art – 5 Stars
Colors -5 Stars
STORY BY Koren Shadmi
ART BY Koren Shadmi
COVER BY Koren Shadmi