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9 of 1: Review by the East Bay Express



On the Same Page: This month's East Bay book news.
BY Anneli Rufus
August 27, 2003

Draw a lesson:
What started one morning almost exactly two years ago is far from over, as
Oliver Chin makes clear in his new graphic novel, 9 or 1: A Window to the World (Frog, $12.95). In this tear-jerking tale set in a fictional Fremont/Union City-area high school, teens representing a kaleidoscope of cultures explore their reactions to 9/11. In so doing, they speculate on Ronald Reagan, Ho Chi Minh, Moses, Rambo, drive-bys, the NRA, and other factors that have shaped modern youths' lives.

Geopolitical conflicts and kids' awareness of them have both mushroomed, says the former Harvard Crimson cartoonist, who will speak at the Oakland Public Library's main branch on September 6. "Every day there's another story in the paper, whether it's about a coup in the Philippines or about imams in Pakistani schools indoctrinating students to hate Indians." With an appealingly sharp art style and authentically teenish voices, Chin hoped to convey a message that was "like E Pluribus Unum" -- in which instead of seeing American society as shattered and terminally divisive "we can see ourselves as coming together after being broken apart."



 

 

 

 

 

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All information and drawings are protected by copyright & TM, owned or licensed by Oliver Chin
© 2003. For general inquiries, please email oliver@immedium.com.