Today’s featured review is Jade, Volume One, by local artist and writer Fiona Avocado. Its premise is simple, and in fact it could be summed up in a sentence: a young woman skips out on work for the day and goes to the beach with her dog. This easy synopsis, though, belies the depth of emotion that permeates every page of Jade. Avocado actively involves you from the start, asking you to bear witness to the main character’s tears of hopeless frustration over her life and the state of the world at large. Avocado draws her surroundings close and claustrophobic, her face lined and weary; it’s a great visual representation of a mean, hard morning. It’s a revelation when she realizes that she can take control of her situation and just leave. It’s easy to forget that, in times of pain or stress — we can walk away, even if it’s just for a few hours. We can take ourselves to a better place. And, as the girl and her dog make tracks along the highway and out of the city, a palpable sense of relief is felt; visually, things lighten and lift and open up until they reach their destination — the awe-inspiring Oregon coast. With her thick lines and playful approach to negative space, Avocado uses a combination of wide shots and close-ups to illustrate the varied beauty of the beach. You can practically feel the cold wind in your hair and the salt on your lips. Jade is a lovely book, both inside and out (it has a silver-and-green cover that is just striking) — read it and tell us how it made you feel!