By Mirion Malle. Published by Drawn & Quarterly.
Softcover, 208 pages, B&W, 2021.
AN AFFECTING GLIMPSE INTO THE WAYS MILLENNIALS COPE WITH MENTAL HEALTH STRUGGLES
TRANSLATED BY ALESHIA JENSEN AND BRONWYN HASLAM
Clara’s at a breaking point. She’s got writer’s block, her friends ask a lot without giving much, her psychologist is useless, and her demanding publishing job leaves little time for self care. She seeks solace in the community around her, yet, while her friends provide support and comfort, she is often left feeling empty, unable to express an underlying depression that leaves her immobilized and stifles any attempts at completing her poetry collection. In This is How I Disappear, Mirion Malle paints an empathetic portait of a young woman wrestling with psychological stress and the trauma following an experience of sexual assault.
Malle displays frankness and a remarkable emotional intelligence as she explores depression, isolation, and self-harm in her expertly-drawn novel. Her heroine battles an onslaught of painful emotions and while Clara can provide consolation to those around her, she finds it difficult to bestow the same understanding unto herself. Only when she allows her community to guide her towards self-love does she find relief.
Filled with 21st century idioms and social media communication, This Is How I Disappear opens a window into the lives of young people as they face a barrage of mental health hurdles. Scenes of sisterhood, fun nights out singing karaoke, and impromptu FaceTime therapy sessions show how this generation is coping, connecting, and healing together.
Praise for This is How I Disappear
A stunning portrayal. Mirion Malle gives us just enough to keep going—just enough to root for Clara as we stumble with her through anxiety, depression, and a culture of shame. The journey is well worth it.Sophie Yanow, The Contradictions
This low-key look at life in recovery has a disarming simplicity and bracing sincerity.Publishers Weekly
I want to give this book to all the people I love! Malle's unique sensitivity and amazing poetic drawings are like a bandaid and a treat at the same time. This is How I Disappear is my favourite comic of the year.Penelope Bagieu, Brazen
In her most recent graphic novel, Mirion Malle frankly and sensitively explores mental health through a young woman dealing with a sexual assault. With a focus on the millennial generation, Malle shines a light on coping mechanisms, community and self-love.Ms. Magazine
Malle offers a heartbreaking portrayal of depression, trauma and the shame that surrounds both. The black-and-white artwork helps readers experience Clara’s confusion, sadness and anxiety... Malle’s work exudes compassion and gives us hope for moving through the darkness.Maisonneuve
Mirion Malle’s characters come through so vibrantly on the page. I wish they could be my friends, too! Especially Clara, the heroine of the story. This is How I Disappear looks at mental health and how it impacts daily life. With strikingly accurate detail and a subtly political lens, the book examines issues like the obstacles to obtaining psychological support and the lasting impacts of abuse, without ever being didactic. Mirion Malle is a wonderful storyteller.Julie Delporte, This Woman's Work...
Great stories provide us with mirrors and windows to perceive our own lives and those of others, and This Is How I Disappear reveals plenty of both in an intensely personal meditation on coping with mental illness in the twenty-first century.ComicBook.Com
[Malle's] minimalist black and white images compellingly portray the weight of her character’s agony and allows the reader to experience her pain. Through Clara, Malle creates a moving portrait of a young woman trying to heal from sexual trauma. Even in the depths of inner turmoil, Clara shows how there can be light in darkness through the love and support of her friends.BUST
In this story about one young woman's struggle with depression, Malle represents an achingly relatable experience of loneliness and stagnation.Booklist, Starred Review
I related so deeply to Clara’s difficulties talking to her friends about what she was going through, but ultimately pulling away from them because she felt like she was bumming them out... The pages of Clara sitting in bed, researching how to deal, are particularly evocative.Book Riot
Art with a striking desolate richness and a universally harrowing narrative, This is How I Disappear is a must-buy for any dealing with the depths of living and the continuance of living.AIPT