Epileptic

Front Cover
Pantheon Books, 2002 - Biography & Autobiography - 361 pages
43 Reviews
Hailed by The Comics Journal as one of Europe’s most important and innovative comics artists, David B. has created a masterpiece in Epileptic, his stunning and emotionally resonant autobiography about growing up with an epileptic brother. Epileptic gathers together and makes available in English for the first time all six volumes of the internationally acclaimed graphic work.

David B. was born Pierre-François Beauchard in a small town near Orléans, France. He spent an idyllic early childhood playing with the neighborhood kids and, along with his older brother, Jean-Christophe, ganging up on his little sister, Florence. But their lives changed abruptly when Jean-Christophe was struck with epilepsy at age eleven. In search of a cure, their parents dragged the family to acupuncturists and magnetic therapists, to mediums and macrobiotic communes. But every new cure ended in disappointment as Jean-Christophe, after brief periods of remission, would only get worse.

Angry at his brother for abandoning him and at all the quacks who offered them false hope, Pierre-François learned to cope by drawing fantastically elaborate battle scenes, creating images that provide a fascinating window into his interior life. An honest and horrifying portrait of the disease and of the pain and fear it sowed in the family, Epileptic is also a moving depiction of one family’s intricate history. Through flashbacks, we are introduced to the stories of Pierre-François’s grandparents and we relive his grandfathers’ experiences in both World Wars. We follow Pierre-François through his childhood, adolescence, and adulthood, all the while charting his complicated relationship with his brother and Jean-Christophe”s losing battle with epilepsy. Illustrated with beautiful and striking black-and-white images, Epileptic is as astonishing, intimate, and heartbreaking as the best literary memoir.

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Review: Epileptic 1 [L'Ascension du Haut Mal, 1-3] (L'Ascension du Haut Mal #1-3 omnibus)

User Review  - Kirsten - Goodreads

This is volume one of the awesome memoir of a young man growing up in France in the 1960s and 70s. David's older brother, Jean-Christophe, suffers from intractable epilepsy, sometimes suffering ... Read full review

Review: Epileptic (L'Ascension du Haut Mal #1-6 omnibus)

User Review  - Holly Cruise - Goodreads

An impressive, weighty tome in both physical appearance and in content, Epileptic is the autobiographical story of a man's childhood and later life haunted by the shadow of his epileptic older brother ... Read full review

About the author (2002)

David B. is a founding member of L'Association, a group of French cartoonists who banded together as publishers in 1990 and have revolutionized European comics with their groundbreaking approach to format, subject matter, and style. He has received many awards, including the French Alph' Art award for comics excellence in 2000, and he was cited as European Cartoonist of the Year in 1998 by The Comics Journal. He lives in France.

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