Hot Comb (Drawn & Quarterly)
Hot Comb by Ebony Flowers is one of the most acclaimed graphic novels of 2019, receiving nominations from the YALSA Great Graphic Novels for Teens and Alex Awards, as well as the NAACP Image Awards. The book offers a poignant glimpse into Black women’s anxieties, support networks, and coming of age stories. Hot Comb is insightful and empathetic about the imperfections of identity, a propitious display of talent from a vital new voice. Flowers will be joined in conversation by TV and comics writer Taneka Stotts.
Praise for Hot Comb:
"With Hot Comb, Ebony Flowers has created one that’s particularly engaging, with a mixture of day-to-day events and compelling storytelling that shows she deserves to be seen as a breakout talent."--Toronto Star
"What moves us, in turn, is the artist’s own attention to meticulous visual detail in her comics, charting the steps of the hair care process, a replication of her mother’s effort."--The New York Times
"Vivid and resonant… In the eight stories of Hot Comb, a mix of autobiography and fiction, the thread throughout is black women’s hair — as a source of intimacy, community and tension."--The New York Times Book Review
"[An] exhilarating collection...All of the stories in [Hot Comb] confront the attitudes inscribed in the commonplace language of black hair that is wild, untamed, and raw in its natural state, and yet so fragile when fixed that it can be undone by a drop of water."--The Comics Journal
"Hot Comb is nostalgic, telling, and poignant as Flowers explores mother-daughter relationships, self-identity, and conversations about the female experience."--The Chicago Tribune
"Recounting her own hair-centric experiences alongside those of other black women, Flowers offers a rich, multi-dimensional exploration of how relationships with hair change over time. Flowers is also an ethnographer, and her passion for examining people and cultures results in stories that are sensitive to individual circumstances while tackling bigger issues faced by black women."--The AV Club
"Hot Comb is a relaxed and relatable experience. I honestly could not put it down after reading the first page. With a charming mix of humor, heart, and a hard dose of reality, this book is a must read for all."--Taneka Stotts, ELEMENTS: Fire An Anthology by Creators of Color
"[Hot Comb is] rich with both sorrow and celebration as it champions black womanhood and family ties... How black hair is treated (literally and symbolically) becomes the lens to explore both oppression and community... Vibrant and immersive."--Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
"These complex stories about the ‘ordinary’ lives of black girls, mothers, sisters, aunties, grandmas, nieces, and friends are extraordinary. What Ebony Flowers brings to comics is fresh and absolutely groundbreaking. I’ve been waiting for a book like this forever."--Lynda Barry
"In Hot Comb, Ebony Flowers has created an original collection of haunting short stories about the Black experience that go far beyond hair and beauty. Issues of race, class, gender, and family bonds are all explored with Flowers' vivid and lively illustrations."--Lori L Tharps, co-author of Hair Story: Untangling the Roots of Black Hair in America
"Hot Comb is one of the best [comics] I read this year. Just charmingly illustrated, funny, touching, true-life stories about hair, women, culture, and everything in between."--Lisa Hanawalt, New York Magazine
"In a Proustian spirit, Flowers uses the hair-salon scent of ammonia and the caresses and yanks on the scalp to evocatively dip into her childhood memories of growing up — in Severn, Maryland and southeast Baltimore — and to re-conjure her realizations about class, gender, and the regulation of black bodies... Hot Comb is poignant, funny, infuriating, and gorgeous."--LA Review of Books
Ebony Flowers was born and raised in Maryland. She holds a BA in Biological Anthropology from the University of Maryland College Park and a PhD in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she wrote her dissertation as a comic (mostly). Ebony is a 2017 Rona Jaffe Award recipient. She lives in Denver, CO. This is her first collection of short stories.
Taneka Stotts is an award-winning comics creator and television writer based in Los Angeles, CA. They have won the 2017 Ignatz and 2018 Eisner award for best anthology. A co-founder to Ascend Comics with Der-shing Helmer, they continue to focus on comics as a medium for their various stories. Their latest work can be found in ELEMENTS: Earth A Comic Anthology by Creators of Color!