Eve and the Lost Ghost Family:
A Graphic Novel
by Felix Cheong & Arif Rafhan

Eve and the Lost Ghost Family by Felix Cheong and Arif Rafhan
Eve and the Lost Ghost Family by Felix Cheong and Arif Rafhan

Official Synopsis:

Eve and the Lost Ghost Family is a deadpan-funny YA graphic novel about Eve, a 14-year-old on the verge of becoming her own person, and her quarrelsome parents.

Killed in a car accident one night, they begin their wandering in the afterlife – only to discover they’re simply reliving their life in an eternal cycle.

Meanwhile, Eve becomes drawn to a girl whose house she’s haunting and finds they actually share the same taste in music and poetry. Now, how do you scare the living daylights out of your soulmate? And there’s the small matter of looking for her equally-dead boyfriend who’s somewhere out there – wherever “out there” is in the Great Beyond.

Inner page preview of Eve and the Lost Ghost Family
Inner page preview of Eve and the Lost Ghost Family
Inner page preview of Eve and the Lost Ghost Family
Eve

Tags and themes:

#YA #Fantasy #Adventure #comingofage #Supernatural #Ghost #Afterlife #Gothic #Schoollife #Romance #Graphicnovel

What’s it about and why should I read it?

When CT mentioned he’d send me a comic book for review I had no idea what it is or how it looks, till one day a puffy envelope landed on my office desk. Upon opening I was pleasantly surprised by an explosion of colours underneath the sleek matt lamination cover. Eve and the Lost Ghost Family graphic novel is a pleasure to behold because of its strong aesthetic and print quality: the inner pages are full-coloured, and blacks are liberally used in the gutters, borders, spine and sometimes full-pages. Arif Rafhan’s illustrations are bold and expressive, and the comics read easily because the texts and dialogues are sparse, and also rhyme every two lines because it is based on a poem by Felix Cheong. Underneath the cheerful appearance and YA label however, lies a rather gothic story about a teen’s experience with difficult familial and social relationships that persist even into the afterlife:

Eve is a goth girl who suffers from family issues and bullying at school. She bailed from her boyfriend’s double suicide plan in the last minute, leaving the latter to die a grotesque death alone on the train track. Shortly after this tragedy that rendered her mute, her family is involved in a fatal car crash. Eve and her parents become ghosts who have to adapt to the ways of the underworld where wealth means nothing. With newly gained powers like levitating, moving objects and passing through walls, Eve feels somewhat liberated, and happier dead than alive.

There are obvious reasons why many protagonists in YA fiction are set to be around 14 years old. It is an awkward stage of life where adolescents experience physical and social-emotional transitions, and start experimenting with identities. It can be a traumatic and lonely stage where some feel that they “don’t fit in” because they are “different”, while the adults are too occupied with their own problems to provide constructive guidance. Que the onset of eighth-grader syndrome, also known as Chūnibyō, where adolescents dealing with a growing sense of powerlessness and scepticism begin to project their persona into an alternate fantasy realm where one has more control and agency to their own lives, or even positively transform others. Eve’s death becomes her resurrection where she starts anew, echoing a young adult’s transition to an entirely new social environment after graduating from a failed adolescence. The promise of an afterlife may sound appealing, but starting afresh is not a total factory reset, because one still carries with them the burden from their past. Eve may have acquired some new ghostly powers, just like how an adult may appear to have more money and freedom, but these powers are still too limited to make any impact. On the path to self-actualization, Eve eventually learns that it is not only with great powers that come with great responsibility, because most of us have only average stats and we have to work very hard to level it up continuously. However, it is our average power of independent decision and responsible actions that can chart a better path to one’s own life, and maybe even the lives of others.

Where can I get it?

Buy online from times bookstore:

Buy online from MPH:

Format:

On-going graphic novel series, available as physical and e-book, full colour 72 pages.

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