Christina Taylor's Reviews > Murder Mysteries

Murder Mysteries by Neil Gaiman
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Aug 02, 12

bookshelves: sequential-art
Read in July, 2011

In Murder Mysteries, a murderer is granted an unsolicited gift, forgiveness. During a layover in Los Angeles, he visits and kills a former love interest. Upon returning to his living accommodations, the murderer meets a stranger named Raguel who—in exchange for a cigarette—recounts the tale of the first murder, a crime of passion between angels in heaven. This murder necessitated that Raguel—then an angel—be activated as the vengeance of the Lord. Upon solving the crime, he realizes that God engineered the entire debacle in order to test Lucifer, Captain of the Host. Concluding that although God is infallible he is not just, Raguel chooses to retain his memory of this incident and blesses the narrator with a patchy memory of his own crime. The realistic but simplified art of Murder Mysteries, particularly in its frame story, lends credibility to the narrative, even when it shifts into a fantastical setting. While not suitable for most secondary classrooms, it could be a pictorial introduction to the more thematically complex epic poems of John Miltion, Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained.
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