After an unsuccessful job interview, Lulu doesn’t return home to her husband and kids. Life overwhelms her and all she wants is a night alone. Until…A chance encounter with a stranger and Lulu hits the road. She has very little money and no plan, but it’s time for her to have an adventure.
Meanwhile, her already unstable husband begins to unravel. Lulu’s friends try to keep the family from coming apart.
This was a strange, but intriguing graphic novel. Lulu’s story is told by her sympathetic friends as they attempt to piece together what happened to her. As they tell what they know of the last few weeks, more drama is unfolding around them. What is happening in her home while they sit in her backyard? Where is her husband? Where is Lulu now? I wanted to know.
Although her story is being told by others, the illustrations are mostly of Lulu and her travels. Lulu does shocking, out of character things during the time she is away. Her friends (and her daughter) speculate about how Lulu feels throughout her adventures, but they can’t really know. All they can see is Lulu has changed. They also tell how her husband is handling Lulu being gone and it’s not good. It’s hard to muster up any sympathy for such a brute.
Lulu isn’t having some kind of Eat, Pray, Love getaway. She is running away. She has no way to support herself. It’s the actions of a desperate, fed up woman. For the last sixteen years, she’s been at home taking care of her family and now she is lost. Lulu learns more about what she is capable of in a few weeks than in her 40+ years. My feelings about what Lulu does are complicated. There are things I don’t approve of her doing, but I sympathize with her for doing them.
I’m not sure how I feel about the ending. I hoped for something a bit different.
Lulu Anew by Etienne Davodeau is translated from French. There is a lot of dialogue. Sometimes it’s a bit clunky. It’s one of the longest graphic novels I’ve read recently. As for illustrations, the subdued colours compliment the realistically drawn characters. This is a grown up story and deals with adult issues. There is a tiny bit of violence.
I hope you’ll give Lulu Anew a try!