Monday, September 26, 2011
Anya's Ghost by Vera Brosgol
Anya is a sullen teen who hates school and isn't very nice to her family and friends. She's sort of a portrait of me at sixteen, except with more cigarettes. And oh yes, a ghost.
Anya acquires the ghost when she accidentally falls down a well, where a girl named Emily died ninety years ago.
Emily the ghost seems lonely. She hangs around with Anya, asking questions and demanding attention, and soon she proves her worth by providing Anya with a lot of nice things. She's a friend and a supporter, and she helps Anya cheat on tests, and keeps watch while Anya sneaks cigarettes, and helps her manipulate a cute boy. Actually, you start to wonder if maybe Emily's not a very good influence on Anya after all.
Anya's Ghost provides a funny and real glimpse of high school life, with expressive drawings and a sweet, surprising ending. Neil Gaiman calls it a masterpiece, and I think it's pretty wonderful, too.