They were inseparable – until the day they jumped. Ruth, saved by safety nets, leaves the city. Kari, saved by a sewer, crawls back into the fray of the living. She writes ad copy for hair products and ill-fitting lingerie, falls for cats and roadside urchins, and the occasional adventuress in a restaurant. As Danger Chhori, her PVC-suit-clad alter ego, she unclogs sewers and observes the secret lives of people and fruit. And with Angel, Lazarus, and the girls of Crystal Palace forming the chorus to her song, she explores the dark heart of Smog City – loneliness, sewers, sleeper success, death – and the memory of her absentee Other. Sensuously illustrated and livened by wry commentaries on life and love, Kari gives a new voice to graphic fiction in India.
Kari is a graphic novel, written & illustrated by Amruta Patil & published by Harper Collins. She is a writer & painter and is the author of Adi Parva & Sauptik. She identifies herself primarily as a writer & has a freewheeling visual style that incorporates acrylic painting, collage, watercolour and charcoal. Recurring themes in her work include memento mori, sexuality, myth, sustainable living, and the unbroken thread of stories passed down from storyteller to storyteller through the ages.
It starts with a breathtaking graphic of two inseparable lovers Kari & Ruth, but unfortunately it takes a bad turn & they decide to jump off their buildings. While Ruth gets saved by a safety net of her building, Kari is saved by a sewer. After that Ruth flies to abroad to start a new life & Kari just continues her old life in Mumbai AKA Smog city. She continues her day job which is writing advertisements sequels for several products. She lives with 2 other women Delna & Vicky at their 2BHK called Crystal Palace with 2 permanent houseguests Orgo & Zap. Other characters in the book include Lazarus, her partner at work & Angel, a brand manager & cancer patient. Kari automatically gets drawn towards her & befriends her. But even with all the people around her, she is still alone & her suicidal thoughts haven’t left her. So, will she end her life after all or give herself a second chance? Get the book here to know,
I’ve read a graphic novel before & regretted to pick it up hence when I decided to read Kari I was really hoping that it won’t disappoint me & I’m glad it didn’t. First of all the graphics are so well etched that they sure do leave a mark on your mind, they’re dark & are totally in sync with the narration. Even the protagonist Kari seems to be a real person because of all the real life like picturization. The story have been written in a way so that it covers many aspects of Kari’s life hence there’s a lack of continuity but totally comprehensible. The story deals with several topics like lesbian relationship, breakup, cancer, mental trauma, etc. This surely is a one in a million kind of book & I really hope we get to read a sequel. A must read!