<b>It's all about style</b> One of the most exciting books to be published recently is <b>The Originals</b>. A dream come true for many comics fans, this semi-autobiographical, mod-meets-noir tale offers a peek into the formative years of revered author/artist Dave Gibbons, co-creator (with Alan Moore) of the seminal <i>Watchmen</i> and a widely acknowledged master of the graphic novel. Gibbons grew up during the ascent of mod culture, when nobody was anybody without a scooter and a skinny tie. The book is set in the future, although the slang, the style and the hover-scooters are all clearly nods to '60s London. The black-and-white artwork and hard-boiled text are the perfect medium for the gritty story of social ambitions gone wrong. <i>Becky Ohlsen writes from Portland, Oregon.</i>

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