A novelist, journalist, socialite, botanist, explorer, and World War I ambulance driver, Julia Henshaw was a unique and colourful personality. This graphic biography follows her extraordinary life from Montreal to Vancouver, from the Rocky Mountains to England, and from the mining towns of BC's Kootenays to the battlefields of France and Belgium. Her strongly expressed views of women's roles and voting rights, of racial and class issues, and of Canada's relationship to Great Britain and the USA are an illuminating contrast with the values of her contemporaries, and with society today.
132 pages, black and white, 7 5/8 x 10 3/4 inches, soft cover
Published by Midtown Press, Vancouver, 2018
Suggested retail: $19.95
TO BE PUBLISHED ABOUT MAY 1, 2018
Available from all bookstores (real ones and on-line, too), plus the Comic Shop on 4th Avenue in Vancouver.
(My Facebook page will have up-to-date posts about events although I will put major ones on the "newstuff" page on this site; more permanent items such as reviews will be posted below)
Julia mixes the graphic novel genre with a lot of digital visual material, including newspaper facsimiles and some historic photographs, to fill in the blanks in the record of Julia Henshaw's eventful life. It also has me (the author) as a recurring character – not at all unusual as witnessed by Art Spiegelman in Maus and the narrator in Persepolis, to name a couple of famous examples. The mixing of different media is something I first saw in Shigeru Mizuki's Showa history of Japan; I've used Photoshop Elements to bend and distort newspaper pages, for example.
The high-resolution newspaper facsimiles, and the 480-dpi printing of them in the graphic novel itself, means they can actually be read with a magnifying glass. This is "history getting its voice back."