Brooklyn Dreams

Presented as a fictional story, this eerily autobiographical tale tells the story of 16 year old Vincent Carl Santini. One day, while hanging out on his stoop one day during the summer of 1960 something, a stray dog comes along and adopts the disaffected youth. A few days later, Vincent has to take the dog to the local cop shop, because his folks won't allow him to keep the dog. Two weeks later, Vincent is back at the police station, this time for drug possession. In between these two weeks, we're taken on a roller coaster ride of epic proportions. From meeting his near stereotypical Italian Catholic father and his Jewish mother with numerous nervous tics, to his best friend and social miscreant "Shane". In between these two visits to the constables, Vincent assails us with stories and tales of his life, his beliefs, events, and even the relationship with the first girl he ever really loved. While set 50 some years ago, this still resonates with anyone who remembers (or is currently going through their teen years. While there's not a lot of sexy time in this book, this qualifies as a mature title due to extensive adult language, themes, and drug use. J.M. Dematteis is a bit of a legend in the comics world, and it's not hard to see why. He's written for all the major superhero characters (his Spider-man story "Kraven's Last Hunt" is legendary), and he has a real knack for writing characters that really resonate with readers. This is another great story from a living legend. , The artwork by Glen Barr is amazing, utilizing a traditional black and white format, Barr differentiates between the "now" with a more realistic art style (right panel), while Vincent's flashbacks are in a more cartoonish style (left panel). I lost several hours to this story, and it has become a major touchstone in my literary canon. Fun, funny, insightful, and at turns shocking, this is an amazing book that most audiences will be utterly blown away by its heart. ​ The price is for the 2012 re-issued hardback that collects all four issues of the original publication into one handsomely appointed book.

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