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Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth

by Chris Ware

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: The Acme Novelty Library (5, 6, 8, 9, 11, 12, 13, 14)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
3,216594,128 (4.12)1 / 56
A graphic novel chronicles four generations of the Corrigan men, from 1893 to 1983. "This first book from Chicago author Chris Ware is a pleasantly-decorated view at a lonely and emotionally-impaired 'everyman' (Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth), who is provided, at age 36, the opportunity to meet his father for the first time. An improvisatory romance which gingerly deports itself between 1890's Chicago and 1980's small town Michigan, the reader is helped along by thousands of colored illustrations and diagrams, which, when read rapidly in sequence, provide a convincing illusion of life and movement. The bulk of the work is supported by fold-out instructions, an index, paper cut-outs, and a brief apology, all of which concrete to form a rich portrait of a man stunted by a paralyzing fear of being disliked."--Publisher's website.… (more)
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Group TopicMessagesLast Message 
 Comics: Jimmy Corrigan5 unread / 5gregtmills, July 2007

» See also 56 mentions

English (53)  Danish (2)  French (2)  All languages (57)
Showing 1-5 of 53 (next | show all)
I'll start with the artwork, because it's basically astounding. The scenes from the 1893 Chicago World's Fair would probably be enough to warrant giving this book 5 stars. The sense of scale and the utter smallness of the people, the drawings are strikingly beautiful.

Now the story. It's consumed with loneliness and grief and is deeply affecting. The whole clan of Corrigan men will stick with you like signposts for mistakes to avoid. There was a danger as I got close to the end that it would be too bleak for me, but there are hints of hope in it, which is maybe all you need. ( )
  rknickme | Mar 31, 2024 |
It was engaging, but confusing and hard to read at times. The story was also a lot more realistic than I expected for a series of comics. ( )
  Dances_with_Words | Jan 6, 2024 |
Simply brilliant, perhaps the apex of the form.
  Mark_Feltskog | Dec 23, 2023 |
From a design and layout point of view it was amazing, but the was depressing and I gave up on it. It's really nice to look at. ( )
  shanembailey | Dec 21, 2023 |
Poignant yet captivating. ( )
  zeh | Jun 3, 2023 |
Showing 1-5 of 53 (next | show all)
Some will find Jimmy Corrigan slow and depressing; they will be wrong. It is thrilling, moving, profoundly sympathetic — and it is the most beautiful-looking book of the year.
 
In Ware's world, lost boys grow up (or fail to do so), turning into lost men. Grey waves of depression cascade endlessly down though lost generations. No feel- good endings here: what prevents the bleakness of Ware's vision from overwhelming the reader in a flood of cosmic pessimism is the sheer craftsmanship, imagination, inventiveness and compassion with which it is realised.
 
While so many similar projects are little more than strings of striking images, Jimmy Corrigan forces you to pause, flick back a few pages and read again, rewarding you with another insight, another overdue connection. It is a rare and uplifting example of an artistic vision pushed to the limits.
 

» Add other authors (16 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Chris Wareprimary authorall editionscalculated
Janiš, ViktorTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

Belongs to Series

The Acme Novelty Library (5, 6, 8, 9, 11, 12, 13, 14)

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Dedication
DEDICATION (dĕd'ə-kā'shən) n. In this semi-autobiographical work of fiction, I fear I may have potentially impugned (at least, perhaps, in a careless, reader's comprehension of the book) some "real life" alter-egos, most notable of whom might be my mother, who, being thoughtful, intelligent, and supportive woman thus bears no resemblance whatsoever to the miserable wretch who dominates poor Jimmy. As such, this book is dedicated to her, especially as it is wholly characterized by her absence.
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Jimmy, come ON!
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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A graphic novel chronicles four generations of the Corrigan men, from 1893 to 1983. "This first book from Chicago author Chris Ware is a pleasantly-decorated view at a lonely and emotionally-impaired 'everyman' (Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth), who is provided, at age 36, the opportunity to meet his father for the first time. An improvisatory romance which gingerly deports itself between 1890's Chicago and 1980's small town Michigan, the reader is helped along by thousands of colored illustrations and diagrams, which, when read rapidly in sequence, provide a convincing illusion of life and movement. The bulk of the work is supported by fold-out instructions, an index, paper cut-outs, and a brief apology, all of which concrete to form a rich portrait of a man stunted by a paralyzing fear of being disliked."--Publisher's website.

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Haiku summary
On a bandaged foot
And the tooth of a small boy
Travels loneliness. (captainfez)

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Average: (4.12)
0.5 1
1 17
1.5 1
2 36
2.5 12
3 98
3.5 33
4 225
4.5 47
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