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Alison: a stunning and emotional graphic novel for fans of Sally Rooney, from an award winning illustrator and author

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Praise for It's Not What You Thought It Would Be: 'This brilliant debut collection explores the intensity of teenage ennui and female friendship, with a deft feel for its slights and tensions -- Rachel Cooke * Guardian * And I liked the way the story was told (mix of paragraphs, comics, letters, picture rows), that made it a really diverse an immersive reading experience. I really don’t want to give anything else away, but let’s just say that Alison is a heartbreaking, emotionally charged, but ultimately uplifting work of art. Yes, a work of art, I loved the artwork in Alison, Lizzy Stewart’s way of using mixed media in the form of the graphic novel ( some written, some drawn ) works so well. It’s a gloriously gorgeous piece of work, and the first I have read of Lizzy Stewart, but it won’t be the last. A captivating new graphic novel that could have been dreamt up by Edna O'Brien and Judith Kerr of The Tiger Who Came To Tea fame, had they ever collaborated. * The Gloss Ireland *

A beautiful depiction of life as an artist, of the movements of love and time. I absolutely loved it. -- Megan Hunter, author of The End We Start From

Summary

Lizzy Stewart’s new graphic novel charts the adult life of Alison as she slowly learns her own value, finds her own tribe, and falls into a wholly unexpected profession as a painter. Alison is an everywoman who somehow beats the odds to escape a mundane existence, even as she continually questions her right to do so and grapples with her mixed feelings about the role her mentor/predator played in her career path. Stewart paints a richly defined portrait of this most unexpected heroine across multiple decades, revealing the highs and lows that hone an average, listless girl into an acclaimed artist with deep personal relationships.

I loved it, so well put together. I loved the art style as well as the subtly this book uses to cover some really big subjects. For me Alison had everything - if you think that cover is beautiful just wait until you open it up and see the amazing drawings inside. I really liked the way the author added so many different styles, colours and even interspersed the art with letters, it was visually fabulous. Every now and again a book comes along that is such a bright joy, so true, so beautiful and moving. Alison is one of those books. I loved it'Jessie Burton, author of The Miniaturist This book is a testament to the right to choose your own life. It is a tender, heartbreaking meditation on the bonds between women, the dazzle of the city, the struggle to become a female artist within the bounds of patriarchy, and the desire to make a mark on the world. It made me long for my friends; the dreams we have shared over the years and the ways in which they make the world feel possible. I want to give a copy to everyone I love. -- Jessica Andrews, author of Saltwater and Milk Teeth Lizzy's work is beautifully executed with an eye for composition, colour and fine detail * It's Nice That * A genius graphic novel (but lots of words) about a young woman from Dorset who leaves her life to be with a much older famous artist in London. It's also brilliant on relationships, creativity and friendship (and the art world) -- India KnightAlison is newly married, barely twenty and struggling to find her place in the world. A chance encounter with an older artist upturns her life and she forsakes convention and her working-class Dorset roots for the thrumming art scene of London in the late seventies. With its focus on friendship and the passing of time, Alison often recalls Stewart’s graphic short story collection It’s Not What You Thought It Would Be. While its predecessor was enjoyable but uneven, here she sustains the drama, and the parade of small things – baths and bars, studios and shopfronts, spiralling arguments and moments of joy – builds into something rather special. Before you know it, half Alison’s life has rushed by, and she is the established artist feeling bemused and invigorated by the next generation – and able to dispense more balanced advice than the old men who preceded her.

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