DeLisle, Guy. Burma Chronicles. Drawn and Quarterly. 2014.

[An Installment of the “Read Me” Project.]

It’s a comic book.

That’s probably not ALL anyone needs to know, but it explains a lot.

I picked it up out of curiosity at the bookstore [“Hey, what is this?”] and was so charmed by the account, if account is the right word, of travelling to Burma/Myanmar with a baby that I wanted to read/look at the rest of the chronicle of Guy DeLisle’s stay in Myanmar.

Book cover shows DeLisle pushing a stroller past a military checkpoint

As the frames unfold, we learn more about why Myanmar in the first place [DeLisle’s wife works with Médecins Sans Frontiers, which was working to provide medical assistance to the Karen areas of Myanmar], and gradually more and more about the experience of living there for a year or so. It’s a glimpse into the simply human world of expat aid workers and cartoonists living and working in a military dictatorship where the language is new, the customs and religion and food and culture is different from theirs, the electricity supply is variable, the weather is something to contend with, their toddler is toddling, and international political economics has direct repercussions on daily life.

All presented from the disarmingly straightforward viewpoint of the participant observer illustrator and narrator.

Delightful, and serious, by turns.

And moving.

It will make you care about people in Myanmar.

Which shouldn’t be surprising, maybe.

It’s a comic book.


interior of book tower in Prague Municipal Library
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