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I Never Liked You: A Comic Book
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I Never Liked You: A Comic Book

3.76  ·  Rating Details ·  4,415 Ratings  ·  169 Reviews
If you ever doubted that a comic book could wrench your heart, I urge you to read I Never Liked You. Chester Brown looks back on his adolescent attempts at relationships--with his friends, his mother, the girl who always loved him--with such maturity and understatement that the result is an unspoken testament to the reality of life. The feeling you're left with after readi ...more
Unknown Binding, 185 pages
Published November 28th 1994 by Not Avail (first published 1994)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Anthony Vacca
Jan 03, 2015 Anthony Vacca rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A sparse but unhurried rendering of Brown's memories of being a teenager who ruthlessly toys with the affections of several starry-eyed girls. Actually it's not as bad as that, although Brown presents the actions of his hormone-riddled younger self with some severity. What really makes this graphic memoir "cooking with gas" (Blame my creative writing instructor from college for that Carverism.) is the seemingly secondary narrative thread of the casually cruel indifference with which young Brown ...more
Brian
Feb 25, 2008 Brian rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: disaffected youth
This book was like listening to a drugged out hippy recounting his childhood. He obviously doesn't remember much, so whatever he does is automatically soooo profound.
Chris
Jul 09, 2008 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Imagine, for a moment, the comic strip world of Charlie Brown without the whimsy. Take away Pigpen and his ever-present cloud of dust. Take away Snoopy typing away atop his doghouse or dreaming of being the Red Baron. No teacher going "Mwah Mwah Mwah". No crazy big heads. When Lucy steals the football away just before Charlie kicks it, no looney tooney somersaults in the air. Strip away, in other words, the cartooniness through which Charles Schultz filtered his despair, and what you're left wit ...more
Robert
I'd only read bits and pieces of I Never Liked You when it was serialized in the original issues of Yummy Fur back in the early 90's. This is the first time I've read the whole thing cover to cover, and I only did so because my friend and fellow cartoonist, Mari, raved about it to me recently. I'd always been pretty lukewarm on Chester Brown for some reason but Mari is right: he really is an amazing comics creator and a smart, inventive writer. His use of an objective, unemotional narrative voic ...more
Weng
3.5/5.0 stars

I Never Liked You is not a romance story. It feels more like an atonement. A biographical recounting of Brown's own experiences as a young man of perpetual nonchalance, what stood out most about this subdued but weighty rendition, was the author's delicate and downplayed exchange with his mother which proved essential to the ending. How Brown managed to provoke the reader's emotion whilst maintaining an impassive tone made this work striking.



Nicholas Gourlay
Apr 21, 2009 Nicholas Gourlay rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anybody suffering from depression, connection issues, laziness, or social phobias.
Chester Brown

I absolutely loved this one. Chester Brown's adolescence portrait drew me in completely. His seemingly distancing problem struck a chord with me. his inner battles of convincing himself to say the 'right thing' is a very true and accurate picture of mind and a lot of peoples inner turmoil. Events pass us by and we wonder 'If only I would have...'. Maybe then we wouldn't be cutting ourselves our tapping a vein.

The artwork is simple but fits the format wonderful, same as the positio
...more
Andrew
I find it strange that this is the most popular book by Chester Brown on this website. I feel like his autobiography works are poor in comparison to his Louis Riel biography work and Ed the Happy Clown and his other fictional work.
Jenny Devildoll
Come on, EVERY female character in this book has some sort of a crush on him. Except his schizophrenic mother. ALL of them? Really? Is this autobio or wish fulfillment?
B. Frayn
Apr 01, 2008 B. Frayn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
everyone should read this book.
Elizabeth
This is a story about an emotional maladjust making everyone around him miserable for no reason. I know Chester Brown also wrote a book called Paying For It about his experiences using prostitutes, which I really wanna read now, because it makes sense why someone this emotionally crippled would not only have to resort to prostitution, but would fail to understand or empathise with how it is inherently degrading and damaging for women to have to rent their body out as a cum bucket for money. In I ...more
Lars Guthrie
Comics seem to be the perfect medium for the genre to which 'I Never Liked You Belongs': wistful while brutally frank confessional autobiographies that delve into the awkwardness and painfulness of childhood. 'Stitches' by David Small, striking and innovative, really made its mark here very recently, but others come to mind: Craig Thompson's 'Blankets,' Leland Myrick's 'Missouri Boy,' David Heatley's 'My Brain Is Hanging Upside Down,' Debbie Drechsler's 'Summer of Love,' Alison Bechdel's 'Fun Ho ...more
Miguel Jiménez
Chester Brown se pinta como un adolescente muy peculiar: solitario y muy reservado. Dos cosas son curiosas. Una: el poder de decisión que tenía Chester al decir "No" cuando sus compañeros los presionaban para que dijera "Sí". Me agradó. Dos: Cómo es que todas las niñas se le acercaban a él y lo querían y Chester se recluía en si mismo. Se me hacía especial y a la vez no entendía del todo cómo el personaje protagonista(Chester) era incapaz de decir lo que sentía en situaciones importantes como de ...more
Feather Mista
Jan 11, 2013 Feather Mista rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Completistas del autor
Recommended to Feather by: Autor
Con este libro medio como que me auto sugestioné con que me iba a encontrar con la historia del primer amor del artista y terminé leyendo una sucesión de pequeños fracasos y frustraciones (la mayoría, por culpa del mismísimo autor-protagonista) que derivaron en que en todo el tomo lo máximo que lograra fuera tocar una teta por accidente. Salvando las distancias, me hizo acordar a Ichitaka Seto de I"s, por cómo él mismo se serruchaba el piso en cada ocasión. Igual, leyéndolo la pasé bastante bien ...more
Sean Duffy
Aug 10, 2007 Sean Duffy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Delightful and different slice of young life about a shy boy who eats a lot of crackers, refuses to swear, and struggles with intimacy and relationships. The art is weird and wonderful--featuring alien sized heads and painfully thin bodies. As with Fun Home, I enjoyed the 70's flavor: KISS, David Bowie, Kung Fu, and Charlie's Angels. This is subtle and deceptively insightful. Good stuff. I want more.

Sara
Jan 20, 2010 Sara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics-gn, nonfic
One of my favorite childhood memoir comics. I just read this for the second time, and it's striking how unemotional and unnostalgic chester is in his recounting of this. The only emotions are the emotions of him as a kid/teen, and these are exactly as inconsistent and situationally inappropriate as all the emotions I remember having as a young person.
Samuel
Feb 24, 2017 Samuel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: graphic-novels
Chester Brown is a hard Author to like. Most known and loved for Louis Reil it's dangerous to step out into his other works because of his obsession with legalizing prostitution. With this title I was pleasantly surprised, it keeps to its nostalgic prose while maintaining the level of art Brown is known for.
Antoine
Mar 25, 2012 Antoine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Près de vingt ans après sa première parution, Je ne t’ai jamais aimé conserve tout son pouvoir d’évocation. Chester Brown y décortique avec une légèreté et une très grande précision cette étrange période s’étalant de la fin de l’âge de l'innocence aux débuts des troubles de l’adolescence.

Sous un aspect apparemment très simple, l’auteur de Louis Riel réussit à montrer brillamment le tourment émotionnel dans lequel il a baigné durant sa jeunesse. Le passage de la bulle protectrice de l’enfance au
...more
Evelyn Swift (Featherbrained Books)
I was not a big fan of this. I am a little surprised at how many five star ratings there are and the synopsis says this is considered "one of the best graphic novels published in recent years."

After reading this, especially the written portion at the end, all I can surmise is that the author must think very highly of himself. Small moments from his childhood are supposed to be so profound. I'll excuse his relationship with his mother because that was quite interesting and complex, but the majori
...more
East Bay J
Apr 14, 2010 East Bay J rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics
At first, I really didn’t like this one at all. I have a thing about comic art where I expect or desire or whatever a certain level of artistic skill. Poorly rendered anything is seriously distracting for me and Brown is one of those artists. I know this is an accepted thing in independent comics and other comics as well and I like Peter Bagge’s work and Daniel Clowes but the art in a lot of independents was (and is) mediocre at best. Also, the narrative is completely disjointed, which was also ...more
Meghan
Jun 10, 2011 Meghan rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics, reread
A memoir of growing up in the suburbs in the 1970s, in Canada, and learning how to interact with people. A series of clumsy, fumbling attempts to have relationships, when you're too young to know what to do or what you actually want. What makes this comic outstanding, to me, is its use of negative space. The panels are floating in a sea of black. This is a surprisingly effective way of conveying isolation and detachment - especially in silent scenes wherein Chester is sitting at the kitchen tabl ...more
Lindsay
I found this dull and kind of boring, and I didn't like any of the characters, especially the lead. I feel bad about this, because it's autobiographical, but I just felt that the main character - the author, Chester Brown - was cold and rude towards everyone around him. I know that he's supposed to be extremely introverted and that he has trouble interacting normally with others, but he just comes off as a jerk. I didn't see any real moments where he was struggling to interact with others; I jus ...more
Tempest
Apr 13, 2007 Tempest rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everybody
Brown’s appeal doesn’t lie within his panels, it lies between them. Within his drawings he lays things out in a very bald way, with a borderline bland rhetoric. However, the combination of style and words manages to convey a deeper set of emotions, one that the reader is forced to discover for him or herself. The quiet meaning behind this minimalist art is impressive both visually and mentally. He demonstrates how simplicity, how leaving things out, is often a more subtly powerful way of definin ...more
Brandy
Adolescence is a painful, awkward time, and that awkwardness is captured here in all its horrible glory--romance with the girl next door (while being in love with someone else), an emotionally unbalanced mother who just wants her son to love her, being known as the kid who never swears--at the best of times, high school is rough; at the worst, it can be used to make comics as bitterly romantic as this one.
Dominick
Stunning minimalist autobiographical graphic novel, in which Brown interweaves the story of his growth to teenagehood and sexual maturation with the story of the deterioration and death of his mother. Profound but elliptical, this book has a lot to say about emotional intimacy and repression, without ever saying any of it out loud.
Clumsy
Feb 27, 2011 Clumsy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fumetti
uno dei primissimi libri a fumetti che ho letto, adolescente (suppergiù), sempre rimasto nel mio cuore. il fluire del tempo dato da tutto quel nero su cui risaltano le vignette. lui, chester (autobiografico), con gli occhialoni e la testa gigante sulle gambette smilze. tifi per lui, ma non ce l'ha può fare: chester è una delusione.
Rascal Drrmrmrr
Jan 08, 2014 Rascal Drrmrmrr rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Oh, to be young and to feel love's keen sting." - Albus Dumbledore
Coty
Jan 07, 2016 Coty rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: graphic-novels
sparse. you will hurt everyone who comes into your life. 5 stars.
Cyndi
Sep 16, 2015 Cyndi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My 2nd Brown piece. Vignettes from a tumultuous time in the life of the author. Presented with a well needed sense of humor.
Emma
Bit too 'poor teenage me' angsty for my increasingly elderly tastes.
Christopher McQuain
...with thanks to Chris B. for bringing it to my attention!
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Chester Brown was born in Montreal, Canada on May 16, 1960 and grew up in the nearby suburb of Chateauquay. His career path was set at the age of 12 when the local newspaper, The St. Lawrence Sun, published one of his comic strips.

Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name.

At 19, he moved to Toronto and got a day job while he worked on his skills as a ca
...more
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