Blankets by Craig Thompson is a more serious (and rather lengthy) graphic novel (or should I say memoir). It’s a coming of age story for a boy from Wisconsin concerning themes of family, religion and first love.
When a writer embarks on creating a graphic novel, there are things that can’t be said in words. Instead, the drawings show much more than words could do. I really loved Thompson as a character in this book and how out of place he felt in the middle of crowded, rowdy parties–something relate able to fellow introverts. In addition to those scenes, there were moments he remembered from his childhood and his domineering father. In those panels, the father becomes larger and even more frightening as he punishes his sons.
There were parts that I felt weren’t teased through enough. It starts with a focus on the family dynamic, but as the story progresses, they move completely into the background. I wondered how the protagonist felt towards his parents once he got older or how he came to terms with them.
When I started to search for graphic novels, this one came up on almost all of my searches as a worthwhile read. For the graphic novel form, I feel this is the first coming of age story I’ve encountered. It’s something worth assigning to an English I class at university.