A fast-paced semi-memoir about diners, drugs, and California in the 1970s
Over Easy is a brilliant portrayal of a familiar coming-of-age story. After getting denied financial aid to cover her last year of art school, Margaret Pond finds salvation from the straight-laced world of college and the earnestness of both hippies and punks in the wisecracking, fast-talking, drug-taking Imperial Café, where she makes the transformation from Margaret to Madge. At first, she mimics these new and exotic grown-up friends, trying on the guise of adulthood with some awkward but funny stumbles and then slowly realizes that the adults she looks up to are a mess of contradictions, misplaced artistic ambitions, sexual confusion, dependencies, and addictions.
Over Easy is equal parts time capsule of late 1970s life in California – with its deadheads, punks, disco rollers, casual sex and drug use – and bildungsroman of a young woman from naïve, sexually inexperienced art-school dropout to self-aware, self-confident artist. Mimi Pond’s chatty, slyly observant anecdotes create a compelling portrait of a distinct moment in time. Over Easy is an immediate, limber, and precise memoir narrated with an eye for the humor in every situation.
Praise for Over Easy
“The fact that thirty years passed before she took on the task of processing the experience and spinning it into a story shows that this was almost a necessary incubation period. Pond the artist wasn’t quite ready to do this book until she had had time to both process the experience and develop her skills. The results are remarkable.” —Rob Clough, Wow Cool (read the full review)
“[Mimi Pond’s] detailed portrait of the Imperial Cafe’s small community, as it remains unaware of its own directionlessness, offers a warm take on universal themes of seeking and belonging.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review
“Hauntingly beautiful, breathtaking, ferociously intelligent… Over Easy simply comes with the highest praise, and quite simply, deserves to be read.” —PopMatters
“Her lines are unpretentious and airy, and her people aren’t overwhelmed by their affectations; Pond can capture facial expressions with a line or two.” —NPR
Mimi Pond is a cartoonist, illustrator, and writer. She has created comics for the Los Angeles Times, Seventeen magazine, National Lampoon, and many other publications, and has written and illustrated five humor books. She has also written for television: her credits include the first full-length episode of The Simpsons “Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire” and episodes for the television shows Designing Women and Pee Wee’s Playhouse. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, the painter Wayne White.
272 page 2-color hardcover
Drawn and Quarterly, 2014