Thursday, September 12, 2013

The Underwater Welder

Author:  Jeff Lemire
Year: 2012
Publisher:  Top Shelf Productions
Pages: 212

Goodreads Description:
As an underwater welder on an oilrig off the coast of Nova Scotia, Jack Joseph is used to the immense pressures of deep-sea work. Nothing, however, could prepare him for the pressures of impending fatherhood. As Jack dives deeper and deeper, he seems to pull further and further away from his young wife and their unborn son. Then one night, deep in the icy solitude of the ocean floor, something unexplainable happens. Jack has a mysterious and supernatural encounter that will change the course of his life forever.
Equal parts blue-collar character study and mind-bending mystery, The Underwater Welder is a graphic novel about fathers and sons, birth and death, memory and reality, and the treasures we all bury deep below the surface.

In the introduction to The Underwater Welder, Damon Lindelof describes the story as an episode of the Twilight Zone and that is probably the best description possible. I must admit, I am enchanted by Jeff Lemire. Essex County was one of the best graphic novels I've read and now this "little" graphic novel was extremely powerful. Before I read any of his work, I heard him being talked about as a graphic novel "god" so when I finally read him, I was surprised at what I got. Both of these works have been deep, insightful and moving. They're insights into humanity, not superheroes. I highly recommend picking up The Underwater Welder and Essex County (which is awesome).


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