Aya: Life in Yop City
By Marguerite Abouet, Clément Oubrerie
Why this book?
Originally released as separate volumes, these have now been collected into two bumper volumes which read as one, giant graphic novel. Aya is a 19-year old girl who lives on the Ivory Coast of Africa in the late 1970s. It’s largely a portrait of her life, and that of her friends and relatives and the situations they get themselves into. Broadly it’s a coming-of-age story - I find it utterly captivating and enthralling from beginning to end. Oubrerie’s luminous, vibrant art is charming, but can take a turn into darkly expressive when it needs to be.
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