Fun Home A Family Tragicomic Author:Alison Bechdel In this groundbreaking, bestselling graphic memoir, Alison Bechdel charts her fraught relationship with her late father. In her hands, personal history becomes a work of amazing subtlety and power, written with controlled force and enlivened with humor, rich literary allusion, and heartbreaking detail. — Distant and exacting, Bruce Bechdel was an... more » 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.« less
I can't speak highly enough of this book. If you like intelligent books, you need to read it. If you like graphic novels, you need to read it. Bechdel became my comic writing role model with this book, basically.
Lesbian/gay or straight, I think you'll enjoy this "tragicomic." To be honest, although it was called a graphic memoir, I didn't realize this is quite literally a comic book, though it is not fanciful but an actual portrayal of her life from years eightish to twenty.
This book/comic mainly seems to deal with her relationship with her father, both before and after death. It might seem a bit repititious to some.
Most of all, I enjoyed her comparisons to Proust, Fitzgerald, et cetera throughout the book; her father taught high school English and it's quite obvious she's well-read. She uses similes about other authors in a funny way.
Anyhow, overall, a great book. For a comic book, it's very verbose.
I would not recommend you lend this to your children (unless you're liberal about those kind of things); pictures exist that show her and her girlfriend in bed (nothing too graphic, I assure you).
An amazing memoir. The orchestration and pacing of it are lovely and the last page gave me chills for weeks. This is the first book I recommend to people who have never read a graphic novel before, Bechdel really uses the medium to full effect.
Interesting and provocative book...I now know what a "graphic novel" is! I enjoyed her literary contrasting of her father, with Joyce and Proust. Enjoyed her humor, and especially her introspection of life with her family, versus others and stories from great literature. What a sense of loss for her, right as she was coming to terms with her lesbianism. What a relationship they could have had if he had lived. I enjoyed this; moves quickly...like a comic "graphic novel"!
This is a very different kind of book, and the first graphic memoir that I have read. It tends to flow nicely, and the story is engrossing at times. Yet, I did not feel as though there was much insight gained. Overall, I could have taken or left it. Yet, there is quite a bit of depth to it regarding human sexuality and self-discovery.
I have wanted to read this graphic novel for a long time. It just sounded so interesting and it was very interesting. Its incredibly well done, very funny, emotionally engaging, and full of interesting literary references.
This is an autobiographical novel by Bechdel and it was incredibly engaging and well done. Alison lives with her interior decorating obsessed father. Her father is also manic-depressive and a closet gay man. As you can imagine the marriage between Alisons father and mother is very strained. To add to the macabre humor of it all Alisons father owns and runs a funeral home which they call the Fun Home.
The book bounces between a number of times in Alisons life. From when she was a child to an adult and back to a child. It is mainly told as a reflection of her growing up with her father after she hears about his death. She thinks about the many things she saw him doing as a child that she didnt really understand until she got older.
Woven through all of this story is Alisons own realization that she is a lesbian and what that confession did (or didnt do) to her family. You get to watch as Alisons dad struggles to form her into the perfect girl that he could never be (and Alison never wanted to be) and as Alisons dad sneaks off for secret liaisons with other men.
The story takes place in a rural and very non-tolerant town in Pennsylvania mainly in the late 70s and early 80s. Bits and pieces of the history of era are woven throughout the story.
Alisons father also had a deep love for literature, which Alison herself develops as she gets older. This provides a bridge between Alison and her father, we also get to read a lot of literature references throughout the story that have meaning to our characters lives.
This is a book that is easy to read and at first seems a bit meandering, but it is also incredibly thought-provoking. It does an excellent job of making you look on and reflect on your own life. I especially enjoyed how the characters feelings for each other ebb and flow and they go from understanding and relating to each other to hating each other. The whole thing just captures family dynamics very well (if a bit more dramatically than most families).
The drawing throughout is very well done. Its a fairly simple style interspersed with some very detailed lifelike drawings. I pretty much read the whole book in one sitting and loved the way it ended.
This is one of those very complex and emotional novels that will make you laugh, cry, wonder and consider how society influences relationships. Its very masterfully done and was impossible to put down.
Overall a very masterfully done graphic novel autobiography. Really I have never read anything like this before. I highly recommend it. I would recommend for older teen or adult only, there are some graphic sex scenes and discussion about sex. I bet this is one of those books they are recommending for GLBT classes in college...there is just so much in here to discuss and think about.