Six Days: The Incredible Story of D-Day's Lost Chapter
Six Days tells the historical story of American paratroopers dropped far from their LZ on D-Day and their stand in the small village of Graignes in German occupied Normandy. I find myself at an impasse writing this recap, because I want to tell you every detail of this amazing graphic narrative but I also want to tell you nothing and ensure that you read this one for yourself. It is a powerhouse of story from the first page-- a striking entry into the triumph of the human spirit against all odds while also revealing something far more sinister by the book's end. It is a story that everybody should know yet very few do.
This book is at the same time very much a war comic and very much not a war comic. The strength of this story lies not in the nuanced and well researched dialogue or the sheer power and fury of the violence, but instead lies in the humanity of the book. As is pointed out in the forward, portrayals of the French during the operations to liberate France tend to be watered down depictions of a vanquished people but here, we see one village among many that had the courage to take agency over their own liberation in what little ways they could and many paid the price of Freedom as a result.
Too often in the greater genre of war comics we see a poor balance between the reality of war and the reality of those at war. The truth lies somewhere in the delicate balance between the purpose and the people and Six Days manages to maintain that balance to the final page.
This book is not about Nationalism, or even Patriotism in times of war. This is a book about Humanism and what we can achieve by banding together, standing side by side against evil. The art from Andrea Mutti elevates this book to another level by allowing the violence to be horrific without being glorified or gory. Much like the Pulitzer Prize winning Maus, the violence is masked in ways that allow for the reader’s imagination to fill in the gaps. There are a number of powerful sequences throughout featuring a carrier pigeon desperately trying to reach higher command to inform them of what is happening in Graignes. This striking silhouette carries out its own story throughout the book, silently, in a beautiful metaphor for the horrors of war and the valiant efforts of Hope.
Six Days brings a harrowing tale of the horrors of war and the power of the human spirit in this wonderfully constructed original graphic novel from Vertigo.
Six Days: The Incredible Story of D-Day’s Lost Chapter
Writing - 10/10
Storyline - 10/10
Art - 10/10
Color - 10/10
Cover Art - 10/10
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