“I read, "Wake Up, Sir!" by Ames the other year (almost by accident), loved it and toyed with picking this up for a while. I've started to really enjoy graphic novels (particularly when they're non-superhero related) so when I saw it again, I grabbed it!
The illustrator is extremely well chosen, and Ames' writing fits in well with the more visual medium, making great use of flashbacks or out of body moments - things that are much more difficult to do in a traditional book.
The content is raw, deviant, graphic, heartfelt and yet still fun. Ironically, for a novel about addiction, the content is often sobering. The book catalogues a series of missteps in life, those missed moments, the chances that you don't take, the things you dwell on which you really shouldn't - and does them with skill.
My only real 'hmm' moment with the book was with the inclusion of 9/11. Can you write a novel set in New York around that time without mentioning it? Probably not. Was I engrossed enough in the narrator's own story that I wouldn't have noticed its omission? Probably. In fairness, the 9/11 pages were skilfully written and arguably did have a place in the text - it just pulls you out of the story slightly.
Overall, this is an easy-to-read book about a set of difficult subjects, which is an achievement within itself. ”