A frantic variation on the American hard-boiled fiction, Boris Vian is a kind of Tarantino from Saint-Germain-des-Prés. As an unwitting precursor to postmodernism, Vian offers up wacky ideas, amusing absurdity, tongue-in-cheek puns and razor-sharp humour in spades in this sagging crime story. All the while, he doesn't forget to wink conspiratorially at the initiated reader that none of this should be taken entirely seriously. Thanks to Patrik Ouředník's brilliant translation and Penograf's original visual compositions, we are thus able to experience a unique comics trip - a perception-altering experience that expands our awareness of the genre of hardboiled stories, as well as the possibilities of storytelling itself.
Autograph session with the author.
Penograf (* 1975) is a graphic designer and artist who works with both applied and free graphics. One of the finalists of the comics competition Future in Bubbles, organized by the Polish Institute in Prague. The Commotion in the Andes is his comics debut. Penograf lives and works in Prague. His big dream is to go from Prague to Hamburg on a pedal boat.
Boris Vian (1920-1959) was a writer, playwright, lyricist and jazz trumpeter. As a fierce provocateur and intellectual anarchist, he was close to the world of pataphysics, with which he shared a penchant for recession, mystification and language play. Today he is best known as the author of the novels The Foam of Days and The Heartsnatcher, which did not receive much acclaim during his lifetime. An unexpected bestseller, however, was Vian's take on the American hard-boiled genre, Spit on Your Graves. The author, who claimed to be a translator of fictional American author Vernon Sullivan, the book brought financial success and legal action for obscenity.