Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Notes pour une histoire de guerre” as Want to Read:
Notes pour une histoire de guerre
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Notes pour une histoire de guerre

3.84 of 5 stars 3.84  ·  rating details  ·  578 ratings  ·  69 reviews
"The war arrived in our village on the 18th of January. Obviously there were other wars going on, but they didn't have anything to do with us. There were wars for blacks. Wars for Arabs. Wars for Slavs. Our war started on the 18th of January, and in a few days, everything had changed."

So recounts Giuliano, a loner among outsiders, one of three young drifters caught up in
114 pages
Published January 24th 2005 by Actes Sud BD (first published 2004)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Notes pour une histoire de guerre, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Notes pour une histoire de guerre

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,003)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
David Schaafsma
I hadn't loved Gipi's follow up to this, Garage Band, which is about boys drifting optimistically into getting together a rock band, eh, nice art, though… so didn't anticipate liking this that much and ending up liking it quite a bit more. Darker, someone else here (Sam Q?) said it reminded of The Lord of the Flies, because it involved teenaged boys that drift somewhat optimistically into an opportunistic life at the edge of a gang during an endless war. Three boys, one of them from a bit more m ...more
Maybe I should just find the list of what's won best book at Angouleme each year and go by that for a while because they certainly seem to have taste. I wasn't really looking forward to reading this, with its William Steig-esque art and its serious subject matter (war in an unidentified Balkan country), but it really grabbed me. For one thing, Gipi's art has a real depth to it. The drawing bit might be scritchy-scratchy, but the oils (yes, oils) that overlay it suggest night and rain and Europe ...more
Mike Fiore
Gipi's "Notes for a War Story" recounts the tale of three friends in a country torn by civil war. The friends start out as the run-of-the-mill ruffians you would expect to find in a previous warzone, trying to find ways to get by. They stumple across a set of jumper cables and other miscellaneous car maintenance materials and decide to try to find a buyer. That buyer changed their lives. A militia soldier named Phoenix not only bought the car parts, but took the three under his wing as militia t ...more

Blown away.

Fabulous artwork, yes it is oils, amazing dialogue and a truly eye opening account of youth in war. The three main characters represent the very worst of an impressionistic youth and how we as humans try to survive abandonment, false unity and ideology. Anorexic in detail and unashamedly masculine throughout the book, Gipi portrays pain, isolation and tragedy of conflict on society without ever really going in to detail of a / any / the war beyond three young boys lives.

Matt Graupman
So I read this a few days ago but I'm just getting around to writing a review now which is probably a good thing for this book. Had I rated it right away, I'd probably have given it three stars but, having had the chance to reflect on it a bit, I bumped it up to four stars. "Notes For A War Story" didn't "wow" me as I was reading it, it's not that kind of in-your-face book, but it had a really powerful ending that ended up sticking with me and altering my whole perception of the book. It's defin ...more
Gorgeous monochrome artwork with what I thought was done in watercolour until I read the afterword, turns out is was all done in oils(?!!) compliments the harsh tale of 3 teenage lads trying to stick together and fit in as an unnamed civil war takes place around them.

I'm off to buy more of Gipi's stuff.
One of the best graphic novels that I have ever read. Taught me a lot about the power of the medium. It's a totally unique tone that I have never felt before, even if the drawings lack the deft hand of a master cartoonist. Phenomenal.
Soobie's heartbroken again
Che dire?

Che razza di finale è quello?

A parte questo. Il rant finale dell'autore non mi è proprio piaciuto. Io e gli estremisti non andiamo granché d'accordo. Ma neanche il fumetto in sé, a dire la verità.

Ho provato a leggerlo come parte del mio percorso sulla letteratura di guerra. E poi perché ha vinto il premio per il miglior album a fumetti al Festival international de la bande dessinée d'Angoulême.

Il disegno non è kawaii e per me è stato molto difficile abituarmi allo stile. La storia, beh
If I had to choose one Gipi book to make our GGNFT list, this would be it. Great story, engaging, and a hard look at the way war affects young men, and the idea of war versus the reality of war.
Colleen Venable
The last page of this book seriously put chills up my spine. I was luke-warm to the story up until that point, but the ending was stellar. (No cheating and just reading the ending now!)
Oct 25, 2007 Matt rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone
Unless there are any last minute surprises, Gipi's Notes for a War Story is my book of the year.

Kept me thinking long after I put the book down.
Well I don’t know where to start with this book. I’m not exactly sure how I feel about it. I don’t like it but I don’t hate it. I think I understood what happened through the novel but to tell you the truth I’m really not sure. From what I could gather rich kid leaves his family joins a, what I would call gang and then they go to try and sell some car parts and during this whole time they are in a war. They can’t sell the parts so they go to this bigger “gang” and these people take them in and s ...more
Notes for a War Story is a graphic novel that discusses the trials of being a teenager growing up in a "war zone." The narrator Giuliano, is a boy of 17 who is trying to figure out where his place is during the war. Is his place with his friends as they steal, deliver mysterious packages, and collect debts for a man they barely know to make ends meet, or is it at home with his computer, comfortable home, and parents where all the comforts of home are available?

According to Giuliano's friends Ste
Sam Quixote
This is the story of 3 young men in an unnamed war-torn country trying to survive the conflict. They meet a local gangster and begin working for him. The narrator is a middle class boy who's left his family to be with his friends, both of whom are orphans. One of the orphans called Little Killer becomes leader of their small group as they become gangsters themselves. Eventually they become involved as freedom fighters in the conflict but the narrator is separated from his two friends. He returns ...more
Jared Shless
Notes for a War Story, by "Gipi," is a brief, but detailed analysis and reflection on how war can change one's life. In this instance, the victims of war were teenagers - and every aspect of their life became unique in response to the everyday violence they had to face. Though the graphic novel provides an interesting story, there are some aspects of the book that are disappointing. For example, most of the scenes do not dare to differ from one another: violent, profanity-infused conflict, with ...more
Andy Shuping
short notes for review: I'm a bit torn about what to make of this book as I feel like I'm thrown into the middle of a story without any idea of where I've landed, the time period, or anything else. Part of my troubles maybe that the book was originally written in another language and I've always found it difficult for graphic novels to be translated to other languages, in part because not only are you translating the words, but in some ways you have to translate the images as well as the visual ...more
Sarah Beaudoin
Notes for a War Story covers the experiences of three friends in the war torn Balkans as they move from teenage hoodlums to organized criminals working for a local crime boss. They travel far from home, shake people down for money, deliver packages, and make more money than any of them have ever seen. As a result, they are increasingly drawn into the lifestyle until the final climax when the war comes to their town and they join the rebel militia, believing this will position them for even great ...more
I was hoping that this book would be an account of the Balkan conflict suitable for teens- its not.

However, this book does get into the more general theme of gang violence and the question of choice.

What I like is that the characters acknowledge both the positive and negative things that come from running with a gang. It acknowledges the fancy clothes, piles of cash, the sense of family and brotherhood. It also addresses stress, intimidation, pain, power, and murder. One of the characters begi
A rather dystopian tale of three teenaged boys finding how to survive in a war torn Balkan area. I found this to be a bizarre story that reminded me of "The Gangster Chronicles," an account of Lansky, Siegel, and Luciano as they escalate their hoodlum ways into a criminal syndicate. Not quite what it was anticipating when I first picked up the book. The type style of the text bubbles were difficult to read at first, as well.
Derek Royal
Wonderful, stark look at the war-torn Balkans during the 1990s. Gipi doesn't particularize the location or country, but what we have in Notes for a War Story could have taken place at any location in that region. The book also has a self-reflexive tone, which I particularly appreciate. And Gipi's use of color interspersed with black-and-white are effective in establishing both temporal location as well as mood.
Dec 14, 2007 Dave-O rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: readers
Shelves: graphicnovels
An extremely heartfelt piece that balances its realistic monotone oil-painted settings with a skilled stylization of its human characters. Its a coming of age story set in the midst of a war in the Balkans in which the teenage narrator Giuliano and his friends Christian and Little Killer wander the landscape surveying bombed out villages and dodging soldiers. They eventually cross paths with a slick war-profiteer named Felix who takes a liking to Little Killer in particular and sends the three o ...more
This is the fourth work by Gipi that I've read to date, and I have to say that this one is the best of the lot. Gipi uses a wonderfully loose line coupled with monochromatic watercolor fills that shift in intensity as he moves backwards and forwards in the timeline of this compelling story. [return][return]There is a definite thematic sympathy between Notes for a War Story and Joe Sacco's Safe Area Gorazde, but Gipi delivers a fictional storyline that focuses on the difficult proposition of youn ...more
This was interesting...and good...but stayed pretty superficial. I would have loved for it to go into the characters' lives before the war instead of painting them as broad archtypes. I would have loved more detail about the criminal underworld that sprang out of the destruction, and I would have liked things to not be so cut and dry for the characters and their entry into this world. I would have liked for the characters to be more distinguishable from one another visually. I would have liked f ...more
Three teens scrounge for a living in a war-torn country, and get involved in racketeering and crime sprees led by a charismatic leader named Felix. They deliver "packages" for him in exchange for money and prestige in his gang. It's an ok story, a look at how war affects people, and how young people can be easily influenced by leaders. I just didn't like the illustrations, they're that scribbly line-style that looks too much like it should be animated, to me; when it's used in still image form i ...more
Beth Hawley
An okay graphic novel i guess, i read it as essay prep for uni. I hated the characters Alot which ruined the book for me!!
This is not a cheerful story and has very little in the way of a resolution. But, as the afterword says, Gipi's graphic novel about an unnamed war in an unnamed modern European country brings up real issues about what happens when boys grow into men in a war zone, when petty crimes committed to stay alive turn into bigger crimes committed with guns - and then someone realizes that being a soldier means having even better guns. The characters each have their own way of coping, and you could almos ...more
It was... okay. I thought the most interesting part was actually the analysis that someone included as an afterword. The drawing was of the crude school, and part of me was dubiously- 'oh great, another comic about war and/or bosnia,' but it wasn't like Safe Area Gorazde or anything. Not even very graphic. Dream-like, in a way. And short enough that I didn't feel like I wasted my life reading it.

That doesn't sound like a rave review, because it's not. It's not bad, it's not wonderful, it's an a
Set in an unnamed Eastern European country during a modern war. Told from the perspective of 3 country teens trying to survive. This is a frank depiction of the under world that thrives during war time. Interesting, the whole book is almost entirely devoid of females. It just now occurred to me, I wonder why? If you have an idea let me know.

I really love his illustrations, very expressive while being dampened down at the same time. If you have not checked him out yet, you really should.
Gayle Francis Moffet
Translated from Italian, about three young men in an unnamed, war-torn country, Notes for a War Story is strange and sticks in your brain. The story is (unfortunately) timeless, with the only difference between these three men becoming criminals during a war versus men of any other generation is the addition of a cell phone. Otherwise, it's a story of boys becoming brutes. It's not a story everyone will want to read, but it's one I do recommend you try.
Notes for a War Story puts you in the midst of a life-and-death chess game of street hustlers, war profiteers and teenagers living a pointless life as they try to learn enough to survive. Gipi's visual style alone would be reason enough to read Notes for a War Story, but in a manner similar to his book Garage Band, he manages to show a sub-culture from the inside our. There's a lot of subtle characterization and insight in this book.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 33 34 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Graphic Novels Bo...: November Books - Gipi 1 2 Nov 07, 2014 06:33PM  
  • Les Quantités négligeables (Le combat ordinaire, #2)
  • 5 is the Perfect Number
  • Arrugas
  • Berlin, Vol. 2: City of Smoke
  • La profezia dell'armadillo
  • Quartier lointain
  • Get a Life
  • Cinquemila chilometri al secondo
  • Glacial Period
  • Le goût du chlore
  • Portugal
  • A.L.I.E.E.E.N.: Archives of Lost Issues and Earthly Editions of Extraterrestrial Novelties
  • Goddamn This War!
  • Yossel, April 19, 1943
  • Gus & His Gang
  • Stigmata
  • Alan's War: The Memories of G.I. Alan Cope
  • Incidents in the Night: Volume 1
Born in Pisa, Gianni Pacinotti (Gipi) started out illustrating for the publishing and advertising fields. From 1992, he creates illustrated stories and comics, published in magazines like Cuore, Blue, Il Clandestino, Boxer, Il Manifesto and La Straniero. In 2000, he founded Santa Maria Video, a studio through which he creates video and animation shorts.

His graphic novel 'Appunti per une Storia di
More about Gipi...
Garage Band LMVDM. La mia vita disegnata male unastoria S. Omnibus: Esterno notte - S. - La mia vita disegnata male

Share This Book