Asterios Polyp

Asterios Polyp

by David Mazzucchelli


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780307377326
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 07/07/2009
Pages: 344
Sales rank: 219,955
Product dimensions: 8.06(w) x 10.56(h) x 1.24(d)

About the Author

David Mazzucchelli has been making comics his whole life. Known chiefly for his collaborations - with Frank Miller on seminal Batman and Daredevil stories, and with Paul Karasik on an adaptation of Paul Auster's novel, City of Glass - he began publishing his own stories in 1991 in his anthology magazine, Rubber Blanket. Since then his short comics have been published in books and magazines around the world. Asterios Polyp is his first graphic novel, and has won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and been listed as a New York Times notable book.

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Asterios Polyp 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 34 reviews.
vkb1 on LibraryThing 8 months ago
I picked this up on the recommendation of multiple social networking recommendations, and while it held my interest, it did not blow me away as I had anticipated. The theme and plot reminded me a great deal of that of EVERYTHING MATTERS, which is a favorite of mine.
kivarson on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Exquisite. A tale told through color as much as through line, form and words.
msf59 on LibraryThing 8 months ago
When we first meet Asterios Polyp, he is nearing the bottom of a downward slide. At one point, he was a successful architect, professor and author, married to a loyal and loving wife. Due to his arrogance and self-absorption, all of this slips away, leaving a bitter husk. A freak lightening bolt strikes his apartment building one stormy night, burning up his possessions and sending him on a new journey, one of renewed self-discovery. This is another strong example of the power of the graphic form, told with intelligence and introspection. Highly recommended.
theageofsilt on LibraryThing 8 months ago
This is one of the best graphic novels I have read! The characters are well developed and fascinating. The art work is excellent and serves the story well. Just so everyone knows -- I live near Providence, Rhode Island and despite what Asterios Polyp says, it is not the city that always sleeps!
aliay on LibraryThing 8 months ago
An involving story that very much takes advantage of its medium. It's a quick and enjoyable read, a great place for somebody curious about literary graphic novels to begin.
stephmo on LibraryThing 8 months ago
In Asterios Polyp, David Mazzucchelli has managed that rare trick of making you genuinely root for a character so narcissistic and devoid of basic human courtesy that you'd normally simply want the entire story to consist of a single paragraph describing his well-deserved comeuppance. But, no, you genuinely care about Asterios as the story progresses - it's done line by line, sphere by sphere, negative space by negative space while this strange feeling of wanting things to go right and well for the man suddenly appears. It is a bit more complicated than all that - we're treated to an amazing array of drawing styles and a story narrated by a twin that died in-utero that reveals a life about to be examined. Asterios's life is a life filled with the intellectual pursuits of theory and paper but never with the practice. It is in this movement from theory to practice that Mazzucchelli's story shines. Read this, take it in, enjoy both the art and the story and see how one can be the better for it.
timtom on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Aesthetic, complex, clever and grappling, Asterios Poylp is a true masterpiece of contemporary graphic novel. Graphic styles specific to the main characters give the author the opportunity to convey much more meaning with each scene: several styles get intertwined as characters meet or part, and evolve with their life... each character "speaks" with its own font, giving them even more personality.
Girl_Detective on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Asterios of the title is an Updike-ish architect. Recently divorced, his apartment building is struck by lightning. He grabs three items and his wallet, and takes a bus to the middle of nowhere. The story alternates between the present, where he works as a mechanic in a small town, and the past, his marriage to the artist Hana. Throughout, the art and story focus on duality, yet together they achieve something that transcends either/or.The art is highly stylized (formalistic, the reviews call it) as is the use of color, playing with variations on cyan, magenta and yellow. Each character has their own font, as well as their own art style. The many layers of artistic variation are dizzying but exhilarating.
Carmenere on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Oh, how I disliked Mr. Polyp! He is an aloof, intellectual, snob. An academic architect, referred to as a paper architect because his designs win awards but have never been built, he seems to believe that the world revolves around his desires and his knowledge. To say that the reader surmises all of this in the first fifty pages is a credit to the author and illustrator, David Mazzucchelli. It takes a lightning bolt for Asterios to realize that he has lost everything and with nothing to go back to leaves town with only the clothes on his back and a few personal items. Road trips are often used as a way to discover oneself and so it is with Asterios. His new friends and reflections of what he once had and earns to return to are brought to life with Mazzucchelli¿s modern illustrations. Moods change with his palate and Polyp¿s rigidness is deflected with the fluidness of those around him.Though the storyline is a familiar one it is seen in a new way in the hands of Mazzucchelli.
karenmerguerian on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Great characters, great illustrations, a very true and convincing story.
ACGalaga on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Read it twice, once right after reading it for the first time. There is not a line in this book that holds no meaning. This is perfect example of someone who really understand the medium of comics.
TakeItOrLeaveIt on LibraryThing 8 months ago
the parallel universe of a twin lost in the womb, the battle of astrology v. free will, the pedantic cynic v the blowhard optimist, the love of anti-confrontation, and the brilliance of the graphic-art medium are some attributes that make Asterios Polyp a true page-turner and a delightful read for the introspect in all of us.
VisibleGhost on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Asterios is one of those works that could only work in the graphic format. It seems like a simple enough story until second thoughts emerge. Mazzucchelli plays with different drawing styles that are also tributes to other artists. There is some satire, some philosophy, and some of many other things. An ending that makes one wonder, did he really do that? Or did he just make one think he did that? I thought the whole book was very well done and the author/artist will likely never top this effort.
dr_zirk on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Asterios Polyp is a pleasant surprise - an ambitious graphic novel pulled off with considerable wit, style, and insight, all wrapped around a story that is a genuine page-turner. A standard test of any graphic novel is whether or not the story told therein really benefits from the format - what did it gain by being illustrated, instead of being conveyed through words alone? David Mazzucchelli's story concerns a "paper architect", for whom design is an important component of life, and this prompts the author to use a variety of smart graphic techniques to let design (and the manipulation of design) carry big chunks of the narrative. Highly original, and great stuff all around.
g026r on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Wonderful graphic design, but I'm not sold on the story.
librarianbryan on LibraryThing 8 months ago
This definitely has it moments but it is hard for me to relate to the title character Asterios. (My partner may feel different.) I prefer Maggie and Hopey. My people need sharper teeth.
jasonli on LibraryThing 8 months ago
"Asterios Polyp" is a story about a architect's life, family and relationships. As several strands of Asterios' life play out, Mazzucchelli dips into philosophy throughout the book to add another dimension to the story. Not that the sharp drawings, well-conceived layouts and solid storytelling aren't enough on their own.Mazzucchelli really pushes the boundaries of comic illustration, layout and typography and he employs several risque-for-graphic-novels narrative devices at strategic locations. Because this book at the forefront of form, there were times when I found the experiments obvious and jarring, detracting my attention away from the story.
eheinlen More than 1 year ago
The only way to describe this book is "odd." It has nice drawings. The stories are easy-to-follow, even if they are a little weird.
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Ichaerus_Studios More than 1 year ago
This stunning and (in my opinion) flawlessly written graphic novel is, without question, the sort of standard that the industry should aim for with every publication. The art, though simple in form and color, is perfectly suited to the story being told, which is poignant and inspiring. When I first read about it, I must say, my interest was piqued, and I knew I had to read it. Bought it at the first opportunity I had, and am so happy I did. It is one of the prizes of my collection, and I eagerly look forward to more from Mr. Mazzucchelli. If this is any indication, we can expect amazing things out of this gifted writer and artist. For a full review, click the link below to be redirected to my review site, "Ichaerus Studios". -Ichaerus
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Megaham More than 1 year ago
I know I'm probably repeating what others have said but the art in this book is outstanding. I've read it numerous times just to take it all in. It's one of those books I'll have for a long time but I'm spreading it around to all my friends so they read it and I can talk to them about it.