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Shortlisted for the First Fictions’ First Graphic Novel Competition.
An adult Where the Wild Things Are, Naming Monsters is a warm, funny, intriguing and sexually explicit take on what happens when your emotions become personified by monsters, and how you learn to live with them.
Fran is a keen amateur cryptozoologist – an expert in the study of animals that may not exist – and she can’t quite tell if the animals she meets are real or part of her imagination. But one thing is for sure: monsters are all around us.
The year is 1993, and we join Fran on a wild ride around London while she negotiates its real or imagined menageries. Tales of strange creatures that might-have-been introduce each stage of her journey.
Fran’s adventure, often with her best friend Alex in tow, is a psychogeography of London and its suburbs – a picaresque graphic novel in which the grief of losing her mother is punctuated by encounters with her semi-estranged dad, her out-of-touch East London Nana, a selfish boyfriend, and the odd black dog or two.
A strange and haunting contemporary folk tale about how our inner demons can be battled against but seldom defeated. It will stay with you, incubus-like, long after you've finished it. Beware and enjoy.
Naming Monsters is a unique book, an obvious labour of love. It's intimate, poignant, sometimes very moving and often genuinely creepy.