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Comic, Laura Kenins,, $8

Monta finds a human ear on the ground in a park in Latvia and Daina stops to ask if she’s okay. This is the unusual start to what seems at first like an unusual rela­tionship. But it’s not. They’re friends; Monta struggles with her identity; they slowly become more than friends; it ends; and there’s an awkward encounter some time after the fact. “Don’t get in­volved with her,” Monta warns her friend after Daina leaves them alone.

The illustrations are intense coloured-pencil panels that reminded me a bit of some of Lisa Hanawalt’s work, but without the anthropomorphic birds. I liked how ambiguous and weird Monta and Daina’s relationship was, and how there was no tidy closure when it was over. They’re both scared and unsure of themselves, and there’s no great revelation at the end. It’s a bunch of stuff that happened, and feels very real that way. (Mary Green)

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