Duck Duck Book

12 – la perdida
02.14.2005, 12:04 am
Filed under: comix, fiction

La perdida [comic book series] / by Jessica Abel.
Seattle, WA : Fantagraphics Books, 2001- .
[MCL does not have this series.]

La Perdida is a comic book series about Carla Olivares, a young woman of Mexican heritage who moves to Mexico City, pretty much on a whim, to learn Spanish and immerse herself in the culture she feels she’s missed out on her whole life.

Carla arrives in Mexico City as a guest of an ex-lover who is a trust fund layabout. They don’t get along, she finds his upper class ex-pat friends insufferable, and she greatly overstays her welcome in his apartment. She makes friends of her own, gets a job, moves out, and tries to settle herself into her own social scene. But her new friends may be sketchier than she realized, and a bit of an underworld drama soon begins to unfold.

I’ve only read through issue number four (issue five is due to be released this month, according to the publisher’s website), so I don’t know the end or nuthin, but I can tell you that La Perdida is part woman-finds-herself story, part thriller, and part travelogue. I bought the first four issues all at once and the rest of my life just had to stay on hold while I read them straight through in one sitting.

Another nice thing about La Perdida is that as Carla learns Spanish and begins to speak it as her everyday language, the conversations in the text begin to be primarily in Spanish, usually with English translations at the bottom of each frame (with a lot of humor). This is good for readers who are English speakers learning Spanish.

Abel has a special short piece on her webpage — “Xochimilco” takes place in the middle of page 32 in La Perdida book one, and originally ran in the LA Weekly.


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