Poppies of Iraq

Poppies of Iraq

Graphic Novel - 2017
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"Poppies of Iraq is Brigitte Findakly's nuanced tender chronicle of her relationship with her homeland Iraq, co-written and drawn by her husband, the acclaimed cartoonist Lewis Trondheim. In spare and elegant detail, they share memories of her middle class childhood touching on cultural practices, the education system, Saddam Hussein's state control, and her family's history as Orthodox Christians in the arab world. Poppies of Iraq is intimate and wide-ranging; the story of how one can become separated from one's homeland and still feel intimately connected yet ultimately estranged. Signs of an oppressive regime permeate a seemingly normal life: magazines arrive edited by customs; the color red is banned after the execution of General Kassim; Baathist militiamen are publicly hanged and school kids are bussed past them to bear witness. As conditions in Mosul worsen over her childhood, Brigitte's father is always hopeful that life in Iraq will return to being secular and prosperous. The family eventually feels compelled to move to Paris, however, where Brigitte finds herself not quite belonging to either culture. Trondheim brings to life Findakly's memories to create a poignant family portrait that covers loss, tragedy, love, and the loneliness of exile."--Provided by publisher
Publisher: [Montréal, Quebec] : Drawn & Quarterly, 2017
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9781770462939
1770462937
Branch Call Number: YGN Find
Characteristics: 1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 22 cm

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samcmar Jul 13, 2018

This was a very interesting graphic memoir, looking at the author's experience moving from Iraq to France. It looks at how her life changed during different historical periods, such as when Saddam Hussein was in power, to the terror attacks on Paris in 2015. It focuses on her difficult relationship she has with the nation, her religion and her family. This comic is tragic, but hopeful, and worth reading if you like memoirs or historical graphic novels.

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wildct2003
Apr 03, 2018

Interesting read. Works as a slices-of-life read; a bit hard to follow as it kind of jumps around.

m
mclarjh
Mar 22, 2018

Lovely illustrations, and touching narration, good storytelling.

m
mogollon
Jan 27, 2018

A sketched account of how a society falls into an authoritarian (totalitarian?), well, let’s say dictatorship and decline. The sections on Iraqi history and culture were interesting. It lost a bit when focused on her family. The layout of tiny illustrations with text above, with little dialogue or narrative, didn’t serve the story of the actual people well.

Too impressionistic and disjointed to make enough of an emotional impact considering the subject matter.

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