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Celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2007, Love and Rockets was finally released in its most accessible form yet: as a series of compact, thick, affordable, mass-market volumes that present the whole story in perfect chronological order. This volume collects the first half of Gilbert Hernandez's acclaimed magical-realist tales of "Palomar," the small Central American town, beginning with the groundbreaking "Sopa de Gran Pena" (which introduces most of his main cast of characters as children, plus the imposing newcomer Luba), and continuing on through such modern-day classics as "Ecce Homo," "Act of Contrition," "Duck Feet," and the great love story "For the Love of Carmen."
This volume collects the second half of Gilbert Hernandez's acclaimed magical-realist tales of "Palomar," the small Central American town, beginning with the landmark "Human Diastrophism," named one of the greatest comic book stories of the 20th Century by The Comics Journal, and continuing on through more modern-day classics. "Human Diastrophism" is the only full graphic novel length "Palomar" story ever created by Gilbert. In it, a serial killer stalks Palomar — but his depredations, hideous as they are, only serve to exacerbate the cracks in the idyllic Central American town as the modern world begins to intrude. "Diastrophism" concludes with the death (the suicide, in fact) of one of Palomar's most beloved characters, and a postscript that provides one of the most hauntingly magical moments of the entire series as a rain of ashes drifts down upon Palomar. Also included are all the post-"Diastrophism" stories, in which Luba's past (as seen in the epic Poison River) comes back to haunt her, and the seeds are sown for the "Palomar diaspora" that ends this dense, enthralling book.
Beyond Palomar collects two of Gilbert's groundbreaking works about the Central American hamlet of Palomar in one affordable book."Poison River" is a dizzying period piece often hailed as one of Hernandez's masterpieces. It traces the pre-Palomar childhood of Luba, her teenage marriage to gangster Peter Rio, the secrets behind her mysterious mother, all the way up to her subsequent escape and arrival in Palomar. "Love and Rockets X," set in the early 1990s (in the waning years of Bush I's post-Reagan hangover, with Gulf War I in the background), takes us from plush Beverly Hills to the dangerous east side and introduces us to a dizzyingly diverse cast of characters, including a lowlife rock 'n' roll band, a "posse" of black youths, a ditzy Hollywood mom and her spoiled son, a gay activist filmmaker and his rebellious, half-Iraqi daughter, and a group of racist thugs whose violent attack on an older woman sets the plot in motion.
Luba and Her Family
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Gilbert Hernandez's characters bid "Farewell, My Palomar" as they exit the Eden of the Central American town in Volume 10 of the Love and Rockets Library. Locals have begun to drift up to the United States to seek their fortunes, but when an earthquake levels Palomar, ever-resourceful Luba and her clan are on the move once again. In the U.S. the lives of Maria's daughters — mayor and matriarch Luba, body-builder Petra, and therapist/film star Fritz — and their families become more and more intertwined. Mischievous children's show hostess Doralís MCs many (but not all) of the sisters' romances, and exploits are detailed in missives from comics-loving Venus to her fierce, one-armed cousin Casimira.
Unsure how to build your Love and Rockets collection? See our handy guide on How to Read Love and Rockets.
"Gilbert Hernandez created some of the most memorable characters in popular fiction." – Los Angeles Magazine
“There's no denying that Beto's comics reflect one of the highest peaks the comics medium has yet achieved." – The A.V. Club
"To lovers of alternative comics, Hernandez is something of a saint..." – The Telegraph
"In a real world, not the screwed-up world we have now, [Gilbert Hernandez] would be considered one of the greatest American storytellers. It's so hard to do funny, tragic, local and epic, and he does all simultaneously, and with great aplomb." – Junot Diaz
"Words can hardly describe how much I'm enjoying these affordable reprints of one of the five greatest comics series of all time." – The Comics Reporter