Notes For a War Story recounts the lives of three young men in a war zone who do what they must to survive, avoiding snipers and stealing car parts to exchange for food. The three boys (Giuliano, Christian and Little Killer) soon encounter a man named Felix who has them do odd jobs, collecting debts and selling drugs, to help them earn more money than they could ask for. Unfortunately, this new way of life causes tension between them and before long, they find themselves in over their heads.
I really enjoyed Note For a War Story. It’s a bleak tale offered through a cold world, but it’s quite compelling with interesting characters, with a great dynamic among them, and a story that sweeps readers up in the goings-on just as the trio of boys are swept along in events that they understand little about. The grim story, complimented by the great black and white art, ends on just the right note and is a tight tale when all is said and done, with no overexplaining or sidetracking from the plot. Gipi’s books (the Italian artist also released Garage Band through the same publisher) are a great addition to First Second’s growing library of books, and are some of the best examples of what they have to offer consumers: thought-provoking, beautiful titles by artists at the top of their game.