To Read or Not to Read?

Exquisite Corpse by Penelope Bagieu

** spoiler alert ** I will admit that I am relatively new to graphic novels. As in, I read my first one sometime last year. Up until I read Exquisite Corpse the only ones I had read were superhero related so this was certainly something different. And I loved it!

I came across this book because as part of my Teen Librarian job I have to order the graphic novels for the YA part of the library. Since clearly I don’t have much experience with said genre I turned to Google and came across this book. Now it definitely is not a book that should be found anywhere but an adult section (holy boobs and cursing Batman!…not that I don’t think teens curse/get naked but you know what I mean) I was instantly intrigued. Girl, through some unusual circumstances, meets guy only to find out that he’s a famous author who faked his own death. Sign me up!

And it only got better from there. Zoe, a girl in a dead end job and with a horrible boyfriend, meets author Thomas Rocher. At first everything is all idyllic and lovely until she discovers the reason why Thomas never leaves his apartment. That is because he faked his death because his books had started decreasing in popularity, a crazy scheme hatched between him and his editor and former wife Agathe. Now he keeps publishing books which Agathe supposedly “finds hidden” after his death. It’s a lovely set up except Zoe wants to see the world and go out and do things. Plus, it means Agathe is always around.

This leads to a very unexpected and total girl-power ending that I loved. Thomas had promised to make Zoe’s vacation dreams come true once his newest book is published but, once it’s finished, he clearly has no intention of worrying about anything but his writing. So Zoe, who has invested months and months of her time on the man, gets her revenge by contacting Agathe who is now her friend.

The revenge? Well, since no-one but Agathe and Zoe know Thomas is alive, Agathe sets it up so that Thomas’s now completed trilogy is written by Zoe. And Thomas really can’t say anything about it because then he’d have to reveal that everything has been lie! Then it gets even better by revealing that Zoe and Agathe are now in a relationship!

Okay, I know that I probably shouldn’t get happy about all that. As a writer myself I would be absolutely crushed if someone stole my book but…in the realm of fiction and characters, that is honestly perfect revenge. Thomas was so self centered and annoying and just definitely deserved something bad to happen to him.

So, in summary, I found Exquisite Corpse to be very fun and interesting and with an ending I just loved even more.


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