The setting: suburban Seattle, the mid-1970s. We learn from the outset 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…


"Smoldering brilliant. . . What Burns does so memorably here is blend the erotic and the frightening to create a black hole the reader will want to visit again and again."—The Boston Globe

"The best graphic novel of the year. . . One of the most stunning graphic novels yet published."—Time

"Black Hole is Burns's masterwork."--The New York Times Book Review

"Surreal and unnerving. . . A remarkable work."—Chicago Sun-Times
© Charles Burns

CHARLES BURNS grew up in Seattle in the 1970s. His work rose to prominence in Art Spiegelman's RAW magazine in the mid-1980s, and since then he has worked on a wide range of projects including album covers, ad campaigns, and set design. He has illustrated covers for Time, The New Yorker, andThe New York Times Sunday Magazine, and is cover artist for The Believer. His full-length graphic novel, Black Hole received Eisner, Harvey, and Ignatz awards. He lives in Philadelphia with his wife and daughters.

View titles by Charles Burns

About

The setting: suburban Seattle, the mid-1970s. We learn from the outset 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…


"Smoldering brilliant. . . What Burns does so memorably here is blend the erotic and the frightening to create a black hole the reader will want to visit again and again."—The Boston Globe

"The best graphic novel of the year. . . One of the most stunning graphic novels yet published."—Time

"Black Hole is Burns's masterwork."--The New York Times Book Review

"Surreal and unnerving. . . A remarkable work."—Chicago Sun-Times

Author

© Charles Burns

CHARLES BURNS grew up in Seattle in the 1970s. His work rose to prominence in Art Spiegelman's RAW magazine in the mid-1980s, and since then he has worked on a wide range of projects including album covers, ad campaigns, and set design. He has illustrated covers for Time, The New Yorker, andThe New York Times Sunday Magazine, and is cover artist for The Believer. His full-length graphic novel, Black Hole received Eisner, Harvey, and Ignatz awards. He lives in Philadelphia with his wife and daughters.

View titles by Charles Burns

Books for Women’s History Month

In honor of Women’s History Month in March, we are sharing books by women who have shaped history and have fought for their communities. Our list includes books about women who fought for racial justice, abortion rights, disability justice, equality in the workplace, and more, with insight on their remarkable lives that inspired others to

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