Book review: MWD: Hell Is Coming Home, by Brian David Johnson & Jan Egleson, illustrated by Laila Milevski & Karl Stevens

Johnson, Brian David & Jan Egleson. MWD: Hell Is Coming Home. Illus. by Laila Milevski & Karl Stevens. Candlewick, 2017. 157p. $24.99. ISBN 978-0-7636-5706-2. Ages 16+. P9Q9

Back home in her small New Hampshire town after a stint in Iraq, veteran Liz Mastrangelo can’t recover from the loss of Ender, the military dog who died saving Liz, and the nightmarish memories from the war. Despite people around her who want to help her, she spirals downward from PTSD, flashbacks, and drinking, her only friend a mutt named Brutus who everyone else considers considered dangerous.

Verdict: Black and white graphite drawings skillfully present Liz’s painful struggles to regain a connection to her world of long ago. The feeling of reality in this graphic novel makes reading the book extremely uncomfortable but important.

March 2017 review by Nel Ward.

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