Kissing Chaos: Nonstop Beauty – Arthur Dela Cruz

Kissing Chaos 2This is the second volume that, in the words of the author, is about “teenage politics, dark conspiracies and unrequited love.”

There is a little crossover from the previous volume but the majority of the cast are new. The questions being asked, amidst the copious pop-culture references, are about the nature of art and the triviality of modern youth.

This ticks along sedately holding a mirror up to the young generation with the occasional laugh out loud moment. The timeline flicks backward and forward between two events keeping you in the dark for a while.

The art is light and casual, never straying too far from square panels but the black and white palette is used effectively and there is really great shading when we switch to the white on black nocturnal scenes.

Not as great or ambitious as Wet Moon but competently done.

Thumbs Up!

Kissing Chaos – Arthur Dela Cruz

Kissing Chaos 1This is a poetically lyrical book. Not in terms of language but of narrative. We follow three teenagers on the run and try and work out what they are running from. One of the characters never speaks, we just hear her internal monologue which is fanciful and no doubt deluded. Another character won’t shut up and could be equally deluded. The dialogue is fresh and snappy and really captures that youthful spirit.

The art is grey tones with a very loose style that conveys the carefree spirit of the book and its protagonists. The characters are lovingly drawn and beautiful to look at. You get a real sense of warmth and intimacy from them. A lot of thought has gone into the framing and composition and the abstract flashbacks are particularly well done. There are also some retouched photos for TV screens that work well.

All the answers aren’t revealed at the end leaving space for a sequel. You manage to put some of the pieces together, dodging the red herrings, but still have questions. The reward of this book is eavesdropping on the emotions of the characters however.

There are extras like creative process, gallery, an alternative scene and some bonus strips too.

This is everything small press was designed for.

Thumbs Up!