A Girl in the Himalayas
By David Jesus Vignolli
Published by Archaia
Review by Hafsa Alkhudairi
A Girl in the Himalayas is one of the greatest comics of the year.
When a girl loses her home and her family in a fire and wanders around the Himalayas, she tries to survive the cold and frozen desert. She is observed by spirits and saved with great sacrifice to one of the characters. The story shows the evils of self-doubt and bad intentions. Humans tend to cause destruction where they go for they use the resources around them. Hence, the question within the narrative is: will she grow beyond it?
The narrative of A Girl in the Himalayas not only addresses the issue of humans and soul-corruption, it also addresses the innocence of childhood. Children have this amazing ability to adapt to their environment and grow beyond the confines of their genes and surroundings. The story grows beyond a save and rescue into a Bildungsroman narrative without actually coming of age. The girl is still a child, but she grows into her character. Rather than remain in a childlike spiritual being, the girl faces what she fears and grows beyond it.
The art feels like watercolor and the visuals are mostly in browns with whites, creating a contrast. The style of A Girl in the Himalayas’ art manages to be poignant and eerie. It inspires a feeling of camaraderie with the character because it invites the reader into the story. Thus, the reader shares their memory. I really enjoyed it visually, exploring the narrative without the need for verbosity. Although there are moments where lessons are learned through philosophical musings, the visual and verbal elements come together and inspire the readers.
Buy It! The narrative, the art, and the style of A Girl in the Himalayas are all very poignant and beautiful. The story is exploratory and experimental. The art is eerie and poignant. The style is vivid and creative. Hence, the story is able to give the reader an experience and an exploration of how behavior can be learned. The girl learns how to grow away from human influence and becomes more humanitarian.