Akex Nall is the best children’s cartoonist working today. And by that I don’t mean he’s the best there is at making comics for children — but it should be noted that his work is, in fact, usually appropriate for all ages — I mean that he’s the best there is at making comics about children.
It’s not that he necessarily draws kids better than anyone else — although his art style is eminently agreeable and firmly rooted in knowledge and understanding of classical technique — no, it’s more that he so clearly understands and empathizes with children on the one hand, while having a kind of quiet reverence for the wide-eyed wonder with which they approach life and the world on the other. He respects kids, values them, and in many ways, I think it’s fair to say, he even envies their outlook. They mystify him, amaze him, at times even frighten him — and I think we can all relate to that, regardless of whether or not we happen to be parents ourselves.
If you’re already familiar with Nall’s work, then, you absolutely will know what to expect here, but it’s my pleasure to report that he just keeps getting better at it, which is why knowing that the book is closing (quite literally) on this particular series is such bittersweet sorrow. Of course I’ll be curious to see what comes next, and consider myself ready to follow this guy to the ends of the Earth at this point, but Nall’s observations of/ruminations on all things childlike are without peer, so it’s not just that you don’t want this collection to come to an end — you don’t want any page of it to come to an end as you’re reading it.
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