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23 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Extraordinary Chronicle Of Our Time
I was deeply moved by Art Spiegelman's "In The Shadow Of No Towers" before I even opened the book. As a Manhattanite, the World Trade Center's twin towers used to be my New York City lodestone. With my lousy sense of direction, I always knew where I was by marking my location in relation to the two buildings, soaring skyward, so visible above everything else. Even now,...
Published on 12 Feb 2005 by Jana L. Perskie

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33 of 44 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars not what the synopsis says
I pre-ordered this book in anticipation of an analysis of the 9/11 anxiety and events experienced by spiegelman looking for his daughter on that day- as the book is marketed. That is actually covered minimally and the majority of the book is a hodge podge of unrelated material. It doesn't feel inspired, just a bit lame and as if he ran out of ideas. It's quite...
Published on 22 Oct 2004


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23 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Extraordinary Chronicle Of Our Time, 12 Feb 2005
This review is from: In the Shadow of No Towers (Hardcover)
I was deeply moved by Art Spiegelman's "In The Shadow Of No Towers" before I even opened the book. As a Manhattanite, the World Trade Center's twin towers used to be my New York City lodestone. With my lousy sense of direction, I always knew where I was by marking my location in relation to the two buildings, soaring skyward, so visible above everything else. Even now, three years after 9/11, I sometimes forget and look towards the southwest, expecting to see the buildings' lights. For days, weeks, months after September 11, I saw, in my minds eye, almost exactly the same image portrayed on the cover of "In The Shadow Of No Towers" - darkest black shadows of the two landmarks against a night sky - emptiness during the daylight. There is no more eloquent description to mark absence, to recall violence and infamy, than the cover picture of these two shadows.
Mr. Spiegelman is best known for his Pulitzer Prize-winning book "Maus," where he used the medium of comic strips to portray the Holocaust, his parents' experience as survivors of Auschwitz, and his own experience as a child of Holocaust victims. Ironically, his parents taught him at an early age to "always keep my bags packed." He writes in the book's Introduction, an extraordinary essay, "I tend to be easily unhinged. Minor mishaps - a clogged drain, running late for an appointment - send me into a sky-is-falling tizzy. It's a trait that leaves one ill-equipped for coping when the sky actually falls." And the sky literally fell on the author and his family that day. They lived in the towers' shadow, in TriBeca, and their daughter was in school that morning - a school located at Ground Zero - a tizzy producing experience if there ever was one!!
This unusual hybrid book, 42 oversized pages printed on heavy card stock, is a combination of comic book illustrations and prose. It is an extremely personal memoir of the attacks on the WTC, which Spiegelman and his family witnessed at close range. It is a raving rant about the after effects of the violence and its repercussions throughout the world at large, and the smaller interior world of the author's psyche. It is the intimate story of one family trying to cope. It is an editorial about the political exploitation of this terrible event. The book is designed to be read vertically, just like the old comic strip broadsheets that appeared in newspapers. Each strip is a story, ten of them, followed by a comic supplement.
An image, seemingly burned into Spiegelman's eyelids, is the last sight he had of the North Tower just before it fell. He saw the building's skeleton, its very bones, lit up and glowing right before it vaporized. This image reoccurs throughout the book.
The country, the world, has seemingly become inured to the unthinkable, just three years later. The further away one lives from Ground Zero, the more removed the event. Art Spiegelman has given us a strange gift with his book - an honest memory of a devastating tragedy - a memory that depicts humor as well as horror, confusion, terror and heartbreak. All of us must move on, move forward. Oddly enough, Spiegelman's book helps us to do so by chronicling 09/11/01 and its aftermath, allowing us to let its vividness go. "Still time keeps flying and even the New normal gets old." "...though three years later I am still ready to lose it all at the mere drop of a hat or a dirty bomb. I still believe the world is ending, but I concede that it seems to be ending more slowly than I once thought...so I figured I'd write this book."
A beautiful book worth reading, worth keeping.
JANA
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33 of 44 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars not what the synopsis says, 22 Oct 2004
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This review is from: In the Shadow of No Towers (Hardcover)
I pre-ordered this book in anticipation of an analysis of the 9/11 anxiety and events experienced by spiegelman looking for his daughter on that day- as the book is marketed. That is actually covered minimally and the majority of the book is a hodge podge of unrelated material. It doesn't feel inspired, just a bit lame and as if he ran out of ideas. It's quite unremarkable, the physical appearnce of the book being the best bit for me. No doubt I'm missing something......?
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5.0 out of 5 stars scary but brilliant, 13 Feb 2014
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A sombre and shocking subject - 9/11 - told by one who was there, is the son of a holocaust victim and an acclaimed graphic novelist. It is sparse - the pages are of card and the last half of the book is a historical thriller - but nevertheless a stunning and highly worthwhile purchase
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book., 29 April 2012
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Excellent book! I loved the style of the book and the comics inside. It was a present and they were very very pleased with it! Was a bit slow in delivery but other than that, very good.
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16 of 25 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A big book containing very little, 25 Aug 2005
This review is from: In the Shadow of No Towers (Hardcover)
This book is very large and quite thick, but since it's been blown up to a huge size and printed on the sort of thick card teething toddler's books are made from, it actually contains very little. The whole thing is completely over produced. Had this been a slim A5 pamphlet costing two or three quid I'd have no complaints, but for it's price and the space it takes up, I think this is very poor value. Mr Spiegelman ruminates briefly on his very tangential experience of 9/11. For such a bulky book and such a weighty subject, this is flimsy lightweight stuff. Do not buy unless you've had a chance to flick through it first.
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In the Shadow of No Towers
In the Shadow of No Towers by Art Spiegelman (Hardcover - 2 Sep 2004)
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