02 January 2013

Review: The Underwater Welder

The Underwater Welder
The Underwater Welder by Jeff Lemire

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I'm fairly certain that Jeff Lemire, thanks to Sweet Tooth and Essex County, never mind his work on Animal Man, is nearing/firmly within must read territory for me after reading The Underwater Welder. While the story and writing and such itself is probably just a four for me, the impact it hit me with was significant.

The story is of an underwater welder going to work on a rig and leaving his very pregnant wife behind. Below water, he finds a pocketwatch - one that reminds him significantly about his past and one that takes him so far out of focus that he nearly drowns under water. He becomes fixated on figuring out what the pocketwatch is and the story continues to go beyond a simple monomaniacal story into something a lot more.

It's a lot about family, about responsibility, about being who you are and meeting (or not meeting) expectations, whether yourself or whether it's the people who you have expectations of. It's a much deeper book than I ever anticipated, and that's often the beauty of Lemire's work anyway.

Just a brilliant read.

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