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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sometimes fun, sometimes sad, sometimes incredible ...
The story focuses on Neven - the fixer from Sarajevo. His depiction in my opinion is quite in sync with the typical "careless, always try to be cool, rarely show your weakness, fun-loving but deep down depressed" male in his late thirties that the war in Yugoslavia helped create on all sides of the conflict. Through his tales we learn some (possibly unreliable) facts or...
Published on 30 July 2010 by LorenzoLVG

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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Leftover from Gorazde?
I have all of Joe Sacco's graphic novels/graphic chronicles/however you want to call them.

The man is a genius. The Fixer has all the traces of a Sacco work, the twisted faces, the self deprecation from Sacco himself, the harrowing stories. However, the brevity of this work makes me somewhat suspicious that this is some leftover story that didn't quite fit into...
Published on 31 July 2008 by J. M. Salinas


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sometimes fun, sometimes sad, sometimes incredible ..., 30 July 2010
This review is from: The Fixer: A Story from Sarajevo (Paperback)
The story focuses on Neven - the fixer from Sarajevo. His depiction in my opinion is quite in sync with the typical "careless, always try to be cool, rarely show your weakness, fun-loving but deep down depressed" male in his late thirties that the war in Yugoslavia helped create on all sides of the conflict. Through his tales we learn some (possibly unreliable) facts or legends of the defense of Sarajevo. For me it was the type of refreshing information that mainstream media did not focus on and gave me more insight into the Bosnian war.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sacco's Sarajevan Search, 1 Nov 2005
By 
A. Ross (Washington, DC) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Fixer: A Story from Sarajevo (Paperback)
Just to be clear, this is not a graphic novel, as some people are saying. It is graphic non-fiction, or graphic reportage, occupying a gray area somewhere between newsprint, photojournalism, memoir, cartooning, and essay. Sacco's first such book on Bosnia, Safe Area Gorazde, is a classic -- and those who found it compelling will certainly want to read this account of his 2001 return to Sarajevo. Aided by a Guggenheim fellowship, Sacco returned to do followup research and find old friends to see how they were getting along in peacetime. In his attempt to learn more about the siege of Sarajevo and the and its aftermath, he reconnects with an paramilitary veteran who had been his "fixer" on his previous trip in 1995. In war zones and trouble spots throughout the world, fixers are the oil that lubricates the machinery of international journalism. They are the ones who steer journalists to the right translator, hotel, driver, interviewer, clean hooker, alcohol, location, etc. -- for a few hundred in hard currency per day.
Sacco's fixer was Neven, a Bosnian Serb who loves his city and fought in one of the many ad hoc brigades that were assembled by charismatic men in the early days of the war before a real Bosnian army was established.  An outsize character, Neven becomes a kind of lens through which Sacco tries to understand the war's very confusing impact on Sarajevo. The book hopscotches between various stages of the war and the present in a kaleidoscopic jumble of images, confusing nicknames, and impenetrable mix of fact and myth. Through Neven, Sacco tells the fragmentary tale of some of the more prominent warlords (almost all of whom were shady prewar characters), and of their sometimes heroic, sometimes despicable activities during the siege. To a certain extent, they are the subject of the book, populist characters who took it upon themselves to create personal armies to fight the separatist Serbs when there was no central government or army to do so (most of the Yugoslav army supplies were handed over to Serbia following the dissolution of Yugoslavia). Of course, many of these patriotic men were also probably interested in enriching themselves, and as the war dragged on, attempts were made to incorporate them into the regular army and police and things got rather messy. As Sacco recounts, many of the "facts" surrounding various killings, atrocities, and profiteering by the warlords will forever remain obscured by the fog of war, and the need for politicians to wash their hands of those dirty times.
At the same time, what becomes increasingly interesting is the relationship between Sacco and Neven, and the plausibility of Neven's endless stories about what it was like "back then." Neven is a down and out character who owes money all over town, and Sacco clearly feels guilty about walking around with bundles of Deutchmarks, while his fixer is real-life war veteran. The subtle (and not so subtle) assaults on Sacco's wallet become a running theme, and are an interesting window on the less glamorous side of being a foreign correspondent. At the same time, as Sacco spends more and more time in Sarajevo, he meets more and more people who cast doubts on Neven's veracity. He's certainly known all over town, and certainly did fight in the war, but there's also clearly a gulf between his stories and the truth. And as a Serb, he's also somewhat of a pariah in his own home city, his apartment is seized by connected refugees, and a general antipathy for Serbs hover around him.
Ultimately, readers looking for a clear understanding of who was who, and what was what during the war, are going to be frustrated -- and are perhaps missing the whole point. This book is all about the fog of war, the strange mutations of time and place that raise certain men to power and then cast them aside, as well as the guilt and confusion of being an outsider looking in
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Leftover from Gorazde?, 31 July 2008
By 
J. M. Salinas (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Fixer: A Story from Sarajevo (Paperback)
I have all of Joe Sacco's graphic novels/graphic chronicles/however you want to call them.

The man is a genius. The Fixer has all the traces of a Sacco work, the twisted faces, the self deprecation from Sacco himself, the harrowing stories. However, the brevity of this work makes me somewhat suspicious that this is some leftover story that didn't quite fit into his far superior and longer Gorazde opus.

It is a great book, but start with Gorazde or Palestine and then come back to The Fixer if you are new to Sacco. It will be all the more rewarding.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sarajevo, wasn't that long ago?, 2 April 2011
This review is from: The Fixer: A Story from Sarajevo (Paperback)
What happened yesterday is not history. What happened the day before that, begins to be. Joe Sacco's "A story form Sarajevo" came somewhat later. His method of cartoonizing modern history makes those fairly recent developments vivid and you get a chance of looking into the conditions people were facing during one of recent history's most despicable developments. To survive, you must climb on the shoulders of your closest friends. It's realistic like photographs but it is real art work without the limitations of a camera. Forgetting and forgiving is one way of getting along, understanding and forgiving is even better. Joe Sacco offers a method of understanding for us who lived a safe long way from what really happened in Sarajevo and a wide area around. Forget, or read, realize, understand and live on, a little happier, where you are. We all heard of those things. Dare take a look at it!
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Fixer, 19 Jan 2010
This review is from: The Fixer: A Story from Sarajevo (Paperback)
A fascinating view of life on the inside of the war that tore the Balkans apart. There's only one Joe Sacco.
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The Fixer: A Story from Sarajevo
The Fixer: A Story from Sarajevo by Joe Sacco (Paperback - 5 Aug 2004)
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