Winner of the 2009 Eisner Award for Best New Graphic Novel.
Winner of the 2009 Ignatz Award for Outstanding Debut and Outstanding Artist
LA Times Book Prize Finalist
Swallow Me Whole is a love story carried by rolling fog, terminal illness, hallucination, apophenia, insect armies, secrets held, unshakeable faith, and the search for a master pattern to make sense of one’s unraveling.
In his most ambitious book to date, Nate Powell quietly explores the dark corners of adolescence — not the clichéd melodramatic outbursts of rebellion, but the countless tiny moments of madness, the vague relief of medication, and mixed blessing of family ties. As the story unfolds, two stepsiblings hold together amidst schizophrenia, obsessive compulsive disorder, family breakdown, animal telepathy, misguided love, and the tiniest hope that everything will someday make sense.
Deliberately paced, delicately drawn, and drenched in shadows, Swallow Me Whole is a landmark achievement for Nate Powell and a suburban ghost story that will haunt readers long after its final pages.
“Scaldingly dark … Powell’s flowing, impressionistic artwork, with its ravenous expanses of negative space, swirls the reader’s perspective through his characters’ perceptions and back out again.” –Douglas Wolk, The New York Times
“Honest and lovingly portrayed. Every word in this graphic novel is carefully chosen, dialogue is realistic, and background “noise” masterfully done. Powell’s detailed pen-and-ink drawings are well executed with lettering and images so brilliantly intertwined that they are one and the same.” –Lara McAllister, School Library Journal
“Darkly sublime.” –Booklist
“[Swallow Me Whole] achieves some stunning effects with the art and the lettering … Powell has a look halfway between Charles Burns and Craig Thompson, and at times, Swallow Me Whole enters that rarified sphere of art comics where the page design alone achieves the mood and meaning that that the artist is shooting for… Swallow Me Whole captures the desperation of the clinically obsessed, and how from the right angle, it can look like genius.” –The Onion AV Club
216-Page black and white hardcover with color covers
Top Shelf, 2008