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The second volume collecting the adventures of the spunky Maggie; her annoying, pixie-ish best friend and sometime lover Hopey; and their circle of friends, including their bombshell friend Penny Century, Maggie's weirdo mentor Izzy — as well as the aging but still heroic wrestler Rena Titañon and Maggie's handsome love interest, Rand Race. After the sci-fi trappings of his earliest stories (as seen in Maggie the Mechanic, the first volume in this series), Hernandez refined his approach, settling on the more naturalistic environment of the fictional Los Angeles barrio, Hoppers, and the lives of the young Mexican-Americans and punk rockers who live there. A central story and one of Jaime's absolute peaks is "The Death of Speedy." Such is Jaime's mastery that even though the end of the story is telegraphed from the very title, the downhill spiral of Speedy, the local heartthrob, is utterly compelling and ultimately quite surprising. Also in this volume, Maggie begins her on-again off-again romance with Ray D., leading to friction and an eventual separation from Hopey. (Note: A number of these stories, including a whole cycle of wrestling stories starring or co-starring Rena Titañon, were not collected in the hardcover Locas.)
15-page excerpt (download 1.2 MB PDF):
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"...a great, sprawling American novel... Hoppers... makes Gotham and Metropolis seem as bland as Scranton." – GQ, "The 20 Graphic Novels You Should Read (After Watchmen)"
"Jaime's characters are so convincing and his stories so compelling that it is easy to overlook his greatest strength: the most economically handsome drawing style in comics. – Booklist
"No one in comics has ever used the comics longform, the number of pages and the years between books, to such beautiful effect. Jaime Hernandez is comics' poet laureate of memory and meaning." – Tom Spurgeon
Links to Reviews and Features
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