26 December, 2013

Book Review: Habibi

From Goodreads:Sprawling across an epic landscape of deserts, harems, and modern industrial clutter, Habibi tells the tale of Dodola and Zam, refugee child slaves bound to each other by chance, by circumstance, and by the love that grows between them. We follow them as their lives unfold together and apart; as they struggle to make a place for themselves in a world (not unlike our own) fueled by fear, lust, and greed; and as they discover the extraordinary depth—and frailty—of their connection.
At once contemporary and timeless, Habibi gives us a love story of astounding resonance: a parable about our relationship to the natural world, the cultural divide between the first and third worlds, the common heritage of Christianity and Islam, and, most potently, the magic of storytelling.

Thoughts: This came around because I enjoyed Craig Thompson's Blankets  so much. 
Habibi follows two orphan slaves who run away and live in an abandoned boat in the desert. Separated, their journeys travel different paths, but they never forget each other.  Eventually they are reunited, but can the changes they have both gone through be overcome to find happiness.
Into the story Thompson swirls Christian and Islamic religious beliefs and ideas. If there was somewhere he lost me, that was it. The religious stories were meant (I think)to lend deeper meaning to the whole story - be a layer to help explain the content, but I often found it too hard to link back. They were more of a distraction or a side story.
The drawings were exquisite. Detailed and rich, you again could lose yourself in just looking at them. The story was engaging and you did become invested in the characters lives. Well worth the read.