|Author: Mark Kalesniko|
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|A down-on-his luck animator looks back in anger.|
From the Publisher:
In his first new graphic novel since 2001's acclaimed Mail Order Bride, Mark Kalesniko delivers a 416-page tour de force chronicling a single day--a few hours, even--in the life of his recurring dog-headed alter ego, Alex Kalienka.
Stuck in a horrendous traffic jam on his way to his increasingly miserable job as an animator at ?Mickey Walt? Studios, a burnt-out and depressed Alex alternately rages, reminisces, fantasizes and hallucinates. Thus flashbacks to his earliest days as a starry-eyed young animator snagging his dream job, through the increasingly depressing political battles and creative compromises, with a love affair gone badly wrong along the way, alternate with scenes of an increasingly agitated present-day Alex, who imagines a series of increasingly violent deaths for himself.
Then again, are they in fact fantasies, or prescient flashes? Is a threatening car tailing Alex just a paranoid fantasy or a genuine threat? Readers will have to wait until the very end of this hugely ambitious graphic novel to find out.
Moreover, woven into this narrative fabric is a series of imagined moments from two generations ago, a Golden Age of animation, when an earlier Alex made his entry into a much different Mickey Walt Studio--as imagined by the increasingly despondent present-day Alex.
Loaded with fascinating insider information on two different generations of animators, skipping seamlessly among present and several different pasts, reality and fantasy, Freeway is another step forward for a major cartooning talent.
"FREEWAY is often stunning. Kalesniko spent 10 years on the book, and the time and care is evident in the structural complexity. Freeway weaves freely between the past and the present, and fantasy and reality, pivoting sometimes on a similar image, and sometimes on parallel action." - Noel Murray 03/28/2011