It's So Magic (Hardcover)
“Lynda Barry’s Ernie Pook’s Comeek... made the world look wild, ugly, joyful, and mysterious.”?—The New Yorker
Maybonne Mullen is “riding on a bummer” according to her little sister Marlys. As much as teenage Maybonne prays and tries she just can’t connect to the magic of living. How can she when there’s so much upheaval at home and school, not to mention the world at large? And yet Marlys always seems able to tap into it.
In It’s So Magic, the Mullen family dynamics are in flux. Uncle John makes a brief return to town to the delight of the girls. Freddy is finally reunited with his sisters. Marlys falls in love for the first time. And after they finally settle into a routine at their grandmother’s the Mullen siblings’ mother might be ready to take them back in. With war in the background and precarious parental support, the siblings long for peace, finding it in the small things like grocery store turkey drawing contests and fishing trips.
Narrated by Maybonne, Marlys, and Freddy, It’s So Magic captures Lynda Barry’s unparalleled ability to depict the magic of youth experiencing firsts in a world that contains as much humour as it does hardship.
Lynda Barry has worked as a painter, cartoonist, writer, illustrator, playwright, editor, commentator, and teacher and found that they are very much alike. She lives in Wisconsin, where she is a professor of Interdisciplinary Creativity at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Barry is the inimitable creator behind the seminal comic strip that was syndicated across North America in alternative weeklies for two decades, Ernie Pook's Comeek, featuring the incomparable Marlys and Freddy. She is the author of The Freddie Stories, One! Hundred! Demons!, The! Greatest! of! Marlys!, Cruddy: An Illustrated Novel, Naked Ladies! Naked Ladies! Naked Ladies!, and The Good Times are Killing Me, which was adapted as an off-Broadway play and won the Washington State Governor's Award.
She has written three bestselling and acclaimed creative how-to graphic novels for Drawn & Quarterly, What It Is which won the Eisner Award for Best Reality Based Graphic Novel and R.R. Donnelly Award for highest literary achievement by a Wisconsin author; Picture This; and Syllabus: Notes From an Accidental Professor, and In 2019 she received a MacArthur Genius Grant. Barry was born in Wisconsin in 1956.
“Barry captures the voice of a young person so stunningly brilliantly.” —Autrostraddle
“Barry [explores] the strange geometries of childhood—that moment when someone can simultaneously be friend, rival, and crush.” —The Guardian