Sunday, March 6, 2011
A.D. : New Orleans After the Deluge by Josh Neufeld
I am so glad that I read A.D. : New Orleans After the Deluge by Josh Neufeld published in 2010. This nonfiction graphic novel gives an account of what happened to seven people who stayed in New Orleans during the hurricane Katrina and what happened to them in the aftermath.
We have heard so much, after the fact, of the horrors of the storm and flood. Yet it seems so far removed from my life in the Pacific Northwest, thousands of miles away. This tale humanized the storm for me. Josh, who is a cartoonist, did his homework in finding people to interview that represented a cross section of the people who stayed to ride out the storm. One of those people had collected comic books and lost thousands of them to the storm. I was really touched by that point of connection with the author. Once again I was given something new to think about. People didn't just lose their houses and their way of life, they lost valuable and irreplaceable things like photo albums, heirlooms, and collections.
Sometimes when I read book that have such important messages I feel so unworthy to even review the work for fear that I won't do a good enough job urging my readers to take a look at the book. Josh has helped me out. You can actually look at his original WebComic of A.D. here. I urge to read it and to seek out the book to see the updates or whatever he did when he moved it from the web to the published format. Like most graphic novels it won't take you long to read and it will be worth your time.
In addition, a teacher's guide has been provided for A.D. If there are any teachers reading this blog that want to find a way to teach about Katrina and it's effects on the lives of actual people you should take a look at it.
Thank you Josh Neufeld for sharing your gift with us and for helping to bring the humanity in to the aftermath of storm.