Patience by Daniel Clowes (2016) Having read most of what Daniel Clowes has published since the Eightball comics, I was a little alarmed by the ending of Patience. Was this a happy ending? Was I feeling let down by that? Which made me think about happy endings. Why do I like the stories, and movies, with bummer endings? Well, I don't so much, necessarily, it's just that, of course, “happily ever after” always feels false. I suppose since a story has to end—while the world goes on—I like endings that come across as true to how I feel about life; feelings which are generally ambiguous, complex, and often disturbing, and about learning something crucial but then being more confused than ever. Patience is big and loud, fast moving, fun, and the bright colors are almost blinding. You get caught up in the narrative and can't help but charge along, wanting to see what happens next and how it's all going to turn out. But as bright and bold (and often very funny, and odd) as the book is initially, please note that the closer you look the darker it gets. Once you reach the final page, you will definitely enrich your experience by going back and rediscovering a lot of the details; the color yellow, the recurring eye injuries throughout the story; random bits of dialogue and thought that say more than they seem to. Clowes often likes to hide almost microscopic clues in his stories, both in words and images. I ended up finding some things I didn't see the first time through that were very disturbing indeed. Eventually I'll go back and read it again, and I'm confident I will enjoy it even more the next time. No doubt I'll come across something hidden that changes my entire take on the story. And I'll still feel like there is more to discover.
Books I've Finished Reading