A Family Tragicomic
Winner of the 2007 Eisner Award for Best Reality-Based Work.
Award-winning comics artist Alison Bechdel has been known for decades as “one of the best, one to watch out for,” in the words of Harvey Pekar. Her latest work—the groundbreaking, genre-busting, best-selling graphic narrative Fun Home—has established her as one of America’s most gifted and extraordinary memoirists as well. With its stunning mix of graphic and literary forms, it has garnered exceptional acclaim, receiving exuberant reviews, winning placement on bestseller lists across the country, and claiming seven foreign publishing deals to date. In the wake of this tremendous critical success, Fun Home has also won new readers for Bechdel—on tour for the book she has been greeted by standing-room-only crowds—and the paperback publication will no doubt continue to expand her audience.
In Bechdel’s affecting account of her relationship with her late father, personal history becomes a work of amazing subtlety and power. Bechdel grew up in a small Pennsylvania town, in a Victorian house that her father was painstakingly restoring to its period glory. Distant and exacting, Bruce Bechdel was an English teacher and director of the town funeral home, which Alison and her family referred to as the “Fun Home.” It was not until college that Alison, who had recently come out as a lesbian, discovered that her father was also gay. A few weeks after this revelation, he was dead, leaving a legacy of mystery for his daughter to resolve.
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