The Troublemakers original hardcover graphic novel
Writer/Artist: Gilbert Hernandez
Cover artist: Rick Altergott
Editor: Gary Groth
Publisher: Fantagraphics Books
Price: $16.95 US
While I’m not as well versed in the works of Gilbert and Jaime Hernandez, notably their various Love and Rockets comics over the years, I do occasionally take note of their efforts. I usually prefer the storytelling of Jaime Hernandez over his brother’s, but something about this graphic novel caught my attention (perhaps the title). I’m pleased it did, because in these pages lies a challenging, meticulously crafted story of grifters in the middle of a con. Not surprisingly, Hernandez populates his story with some thoroughly grounded and intriguing figures, but what’s fascinating about the plot is how it criss-crossed over on itself so that not only do the characters remain unaware of who’s conning who but so does the reader. The plot is an intricately woven web of lies and truths, and it’s peppered, of course, with Hernandez’s trademark touch of raw sexuality. Fans of such crime comics as Criminal and 100 Bullets would be well advised to give this graphic novel a chance; they won’t be disappointed.