For the Love of God, Marie! by Jade Sarson
14th Oct 2016
This is her debut graphic novel, focusing on the story of Marie, a girl from a strict Catholic background who wants only to love whomever she chooses. Her parents and teachers unsurprisingly disapprove of her desires to be open to the world and all it has to offer.
Marie’s story unfolds over decades, honing in on changing attitudes to sex, love, gender and religion.
Despite being mistreated by her elders, she remains a defiantly positive and accepting character who stands up for herself and those she cares about.
The teenage Marie takes issue with being called a slut, questioning the definition of the word and why her promiscuity is considered a bad thing.
She is enraged to discover that society deems it more than acceptable for her brother to behave in exactly the same way.She continues to follow her own path, ignoring the naysayers
She continues to follow her own path, ignoring the naysayers and falling in love with people her parents don’t approve of for reasons of race or gender.
The book is divided into sections depicting the great loves of Marie’s life, including a schoolgirl friend and an older man who sparks off a poignant motif with a yellow umbrella.
For the Love of God, Marie! is beautifully-drawn in a vibrant Manga-influenced style which brings an added sense of fun to what is at times a comedy of manners as well as a portrait of a rather dramatic life.
Sex scenes are depicted in a direct, uncensored manner while retaining the same fun style present throughout.
The book itself is a pleasingly tactile object, using quality matte paper with a fascinating use of colour. Yellowed pages become lighter with the passing of time, making for a pleasing gradient when looking at the closed book.
The colours within the panels are also painstakingly well-considered. Dull browns depict Marie’s oppressive religious childhood, making way for colourful 1960s purples, garish 70s wallpaper patterns and a bold primary 80s palette. The one constant is Marie’s gloriously yellow hair.
A fun, sexy and moving account of changing times and a life lived defiantly outside of society’s demands.