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Sex Criminals Volume 1: One Weird Trick Paperback – Illustrated, April 16, 2014
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- Publisher : Image Comics (April 16, 2014)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 128 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1607069466
- ISBN-13 : 978-1607069461
- Reading age : 16 years and up
- Item Weight : 10.4 ounces
- Dimensions : 6.3 x 0.2 x 9.9 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #74,380 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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There is a bit more to Fraction and Zdarsky's offbeat series than that. It begins as a coming of age story, which leads into a story about a young woman trying to keep her local library from being shut down. That is, until she meets a man that has the same power that she does.
As silly as this book should be, it's written well and takes time to develop the characters. This makes it a lot more palatable when something ridiculous does happen. The creators manage to keep this from being merely amusing, instead creating something that is highly entertaining and readable. More importantly, they create something that makes you want to keep reading no matter how out there it gets.
My favorite part of this book, aside from the musical number in the bar, is the art. It's done spectacularly well. Especially when the characters enter the Quiet, which is what one of the characters calls the period when time is stopped. So sit back, relax, and probably don't read this in public unless you want to get some funny looks.
Long story short, read it.
So anyway the main selling point of this book is the sex. Not porn, mind you, but sex. Both Suzie and John have frank discussions about how they learned about sex growing up, and how it affects both their own and their friends lives now in the present. These discussions are engaging and relatable.
The comedy is generally good. Let's be clear, its nothing but sex jokes, but as long as you don't mind sex jokes, it's good for a good chuckle here and there. It just doesn't have anything as laugh out loud funny as say 'Preacher'.
The book has one serious flaw though, and that's that the villains are badly, even lazily, written. The first page introduces the idea of the 'sex police', out to stop Suzie and John, and they have all the competence of drunk crane operator. The bank that they steal from is just as bad, being written off with one line as a cesspool of jerks that deserve everything they get. That part seriously needs to improve if I'm going to keep reading these comics.
So, if you like sex, go for the read. You might be better off buying individual issues though. It's cheaper.
As you quickly learn from the description, the man and the woman in the novel stop time when they orgasm. They decide to use this skill for nefarious purposes, although they mean well. This description doesn't do justice to the novel.
The first part of the novel describes the adolescence of Suzie's, the female character. When she starts to evolve sexually she had no idea what is happening. Or that stopping time is not something that other people do as well. Like anyone else with non-vanilla sexuality, she tries to understand what is happening. Until she meets Jon, she thinks that she is alone. Some of the force of the attraction between Jon and Suzie is the idea that they are not alone. Their budding romance is charming, although its clear that there are some serious bumps as well. Jon turns out to be someone with his own demons, although none are particularly evil.
The rest of the plot is somewhat wacky. Jon and Suzie are not really cut out for any serious rule breaking. The novel ends before without any particular resolution and I immediately ordered the second volume. The third one is on the way.
Top reviews from other countries
Sex Criminals is a truly glorious read. it has everything, well-rounded and believable (well, in the realms of comics!) characters, an original and perfectly executed idea, superb art-work and a genuine sense of self-awareness and humour. I often find comics that use humour hard to engage with, but this has a perfect balance of humour and utalises within the narrative very well. It's also refreshing to see a strong female-lead within a comic book like this. I had come to the Sex Criminals party a little late (a sentence that sounds all kinds of wrong in isolation), but I can truly see what all of the buzz and hype was about. Matt Fraction and Chip Zdarksy make a perfect combo and you truly get the feeling that they really love what they are creating here and that they have true artistic freedom to create what they want. A genuinely fantastic book.
Must read for anyone interested, and at just over a fiver, it's hard to find reasons not to recommend.