The Great Beyond by Léa Murawiec, translated by Aleshia Jensen / ISBN 9781770466777 / 200-page hardback, 7.75 x 10.75 inches, published in 2023 by Drawn & Quarterly
An exciting debut from a fresh perspective, The Great Beyond showcases newcomer Léa Murawiec’s command of comics language and satirizes a sprawling metropolis, its politics, and its extraordinary inhabitants.
Manel Naher wants out. In a world where your name is currency, it’s tough to make ends meet. It’s even tougher when you share a name with a rising pop star. The city is unbearable―endless high-rises, social climbers left and right, and nothing but names as far as the eye can see. But Manel is looking a little bit farther, just beyond the horizon, and she’s even convinced her buddy Ali of how much more could be lying in wait right outside city limits.
When a sudden heart attack induced by diminished name recognition foils Manel’s plans, gradual change becomes a catalyst for a complete lifestyle overhaul. This stylish, absurd comedy of contemporary manners skewers the human condition in persistent self-promo. Sharp, architectural lines are accented by decisively mellow hues, building a humorously grim world unexpectedly bathed in nothing but light.
Léa Murawiec is an avid manga fan who began making her own comics at a very young age. She studied graphic design at the École Estienne and later shifted her focus to comics at the École européenne supérieure de l’image in Angoulême. She is the co-founder of Éditions Flutiste, an independent small press spotlighting emerging cartoonists.