Black Hole

Black Hole

Book - 2005
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Suburban Seattle, the mid-1970s. We learn from the out-set that a strange plague has descended upon the area's teenagers, transmitted by sexual contact. The disease is manifested in any number of ways -- from the hideously grotesque to the subtle (and concealable) -- but once you've got it, that's it. There's no turning back.

As we inhabit the heads of several key characters -- some kids who have it, some who don't, some who are about to get it -- what unfolds isn't the expected battle to fight the plague, or bring heightened awareness to it , or even to treat it. What we become witness to instead is a fascinating and eerie portrait of the nature of high school alienation itself -- the savagery, the cruelty, the relentless anxiety and ennui, the longing for escape.

And then the murders start.

As hypnotically beautiful as it is horrifying, Black Hole transcends its genre by deftly exploring a specific American cultural moment in flux and the kids who are caught in it- back when it wasn't exactly cool to be a hippie anymore, but Bowie was still just a little too weird.

To say nothing of sprouting horns and molting your skin...
Publisher: New York : Pantheon Books, c2005.
ISBN: 9780375423802
037542380X
Branch Call Number: GRAPHIC FICTION Burns Charles 2005
Characteristics: 1 v. (unpaged) :,ill. ;,25 cm.

Opinion

From Library Staff

Seattle teenagers of the 1970s are suddenly faced with a devastating, disfiguring, and incurable plague that spreads only through sexual contact. Brilliant yet deeply unsettling.

Seattle teenagers of the 1970s are suddenly faced with a devastating, disfiguring, and incurable plague that spreads only through sexual contact.

Eisner Award - Best Graphic Album Reprint, 2006; Harvey Award - Best Graphic Album of Previously Published Work, 2006; Ignatz Award - Outstanding Series, 2003


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f
faust_344150
Sep 07, 2016

A moody trip similar to the work of Junji Ito. Body horror abound.

t
TheSandoz
Apr 27, 2016

Comparing this comic to David Lynch doesn't really hold water- only on a superficial level does it bear any resemblance. This is actually a poignant look at the disaffection of youth, told through the distorting lens of a disfiguring venereal disease ( making it more akin to William Burroughs- an acknowledged influence on Burns ). So take your time and let yourself sink into this absorbing tale- it's worth the time. It goes without saying that the art is excellent- it's Charles Burns.

m
mclarjh
Apr 04, 2014

The drawings are good, but as a mature adult I didn't enjoy the dialogue or stories; clearly they are meant for an adolescent audience.

loveablelibrarian Nov 24, 2013

A truly weird and imaginative story that takes reality and twists just ever so slightly.

t
temp123987
Oct 30, 2013

Black Hole is possibly Charles Burns' better work. A massive book with as always superb artwork - all in black and white. Strong sexual contents and violence might suggest that more "mature" readers enjoy this book. Previous comments pretty well sum up the direction of this graphic novel. Teenage issues are no different today - though this story goes in a variety of unexpected directions - for the most part: sad. I don't consider Burn's work as "pick me up" books. Nevertheless kudos for a well spread - sorry for the pun - look at youth issues. This earlier work clearly shows that you don't need profanity to get a point across.

bandblair Oct 04, 2013

Very engaging, awesome art.

k
Kikokun
May 16, 2013

Easily one of the best graphic novels you'll ever read, Black Hole is what you would expect if David Lynch suddenly became coherent and decided to make a comic book.
Perfectly paced, it reads like a teen romance that leaves you with your guard down until some horrifying twist pushes the story to new directions.
And Burns' art just gets better and better, the panels in this book are simply beautifully rendered.
A masterpiece.

l
lisakenyon
Sep 20, 2012

This was a little confusing at times, trying to keep the different characters straight. A lot of the scenes in this book were delightfully creepy, although one or two did make me feel uncomfortably creeped out.

theorbys May 31, 2012

A long, intense, nightmarish, noir tale told by a master of style. It's extra length works very well in its favor.

m
marishkajuko
Aug 07, 2011

Enjoyably weird.

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f
faust_344150
Sep 07, 2016

faust_344150 thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

OaterMcBoats Feb 26, 2016

OaterMcBoats thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

m
marishkajuko
Aug 07, 2011

marishkajuko thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

c
coutture
Dec 18, 2010

coutture thinks this title is suitable for 17 years and over

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Anarchy_Bunny
Sep 03, 2009

Anarchy_Bunny thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

Notices

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c
coutture
Dec 18, 2010

Sexual Content: Graphic images of sexual intercourse

a
Anarchy_Bunny
Sep 03, 2009

Sexual Content: This title contains Sexual Content.

a
Anarchy_Bunny
Sep 03, 2009

Coarse Language: This title contains Coarse Language.

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