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Laura Pérez, Translator: Andrea Rosenberg


On sale date: September 12, 2023

Blurring the lines between the real and the spiritual, Spanish cartoonist Laura Pérez leads the reader through a dreamy journey from the Arizona desert to the land of the dead.

Two young women road trip through the Arizona desert in search of a spiritual awakening. Crowds gather to see the village wise woman commune with the dead. Strange bright lights flash across the night sky, provoking all manner of interpretations. A mosaic of experiences, Totem offers tantalizing glimpses of characters on their own journeys connected by some ethereal thread. The narrative slips through time and space, delicately drifting from reality to different states of consciousness. Like a vivid dream, this story is rendered through eerie settings and potent symbols, a spiritual puzzle inviting the reader to piece together. With Totem, this self-assured graphic novel by Spanish illustrator and comics artist Laura Pérez is presented in English for the first time. Pérez presents an entrancing, contemporary vision of magic and mystery, aptly rendered through her wispy, atmospheric pencil lines.


"'In some places, everyday life is extraordinary,' claims a character in Pérez's crisp and imaginative narrative, following two intrepid young lovers on a road trip through a menacing and magical Arizona desert." — The New York Times

"Perez immerses readers in the intermingled realms of the living and dead [in her] macabre, visually mesmerizing English-language debut." — Publishers Weekly

"In Laura Pérez's beautiful, bewildering graphic novel, a flashback begets another flashback, unidentified characters drift in and out of the spotlight, and mysticism adds supernatural elements. ... Wildly original and visually striking." — Cinema Sentries

"Beautifully drawn, this surreal story begins with a crow locating the body of a missing architect. Eerie, yes. And the hauntingness continues." — Book Riot

"[Totem] feels like a strange dream in which we, the reader, are adrift, unable to control where we will be transported to next. What a journey!" — Broken Frontier


Full color.
7.8" × 10.6"