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Graphic Novel Review: Paris 2119

Paris 2119 by Zep ( story ) and Dominique Bertail ( illustration ). Yep, we have an optical illusion with the line curvatures on the cover, here. I had to triple check to make sure this image didn’t become amorphous. If my checks had failed, I would have beat it into submission. Is that a pane of glass, separating the light from darkness? Interesting . . .

I received this graphic novel as an ARC in exchange for an honest review via NetGalley.com

Blurb:

Celebrated author Zep (A Story of Men, A Strange and Beautiful Sound) weaves a mystery borne from humanity’s addiction to convenience and technology, and the dangers such addiction can propose. This gorgeously illustrated, poignant sci-fi tale aims a spotlight on current social trends such as over-consumption, climate change, identity theft, and transhumanism. Painted in detailed watercolors by Dominique Bertail, this book evokes the classic science fiction styles of Jean “Moebius” Giraud, Enki Bilal, and Jean-Claude Mézières.


Since the creators opted to list the social trends covered, I will make a quick one-liner note about their relation to this story:

  • Over-consumption: a letting caused pollution leading up to a teleportation device that is problematic in it’s deceitful nature. All in attempt to fix a problem that just ends in more problems.
  • Climate change: atmospheric disinfection program that causes it to rain non-stop.
  • Identity theft: What happens after attempting to contain a man after you erase his identity? Trouble.
  • Transhumanism: digital clones, teleportation, privacy concerns potentially all leading to mental and physical problems.

The choice of art style here is interesting, as the extended description on Amazon says, “[…]in a classic style reminiscent of legendary French graphic novelists such as Bilal, Moebius, and Mezieres.” The art style isn’t futuristic, but rather archaic:

Inside art style for Paris 2119.