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After the Fall

3.14  ·  Rating details ·  167 Ratings  ·  55 Reviews
After the Fall introduces us to a brilliantly eccentric family from New York’s Upper East Side. Pops, a self-made millionaire, is a mad inventor who gleans his inspiration from popovers and Raquel Welsh. Mother is a fabulously dressed but mercurial socialite from Buenos Aires whose weapon of choice is a croquet mallet. Young Alan, our earnest and studious narrator, and his ...more
Hardcover, 192 pages
Published November 12th 2012 by W. W. Norton Company
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Nov 10, 2012 rated it liked it
This is a quirky story of one very unique New York family. The narrator is 10 year old Alan, and through him we learn about his 7 year old theater obsessed sister Sis, his chain smoking, socialite Mother and his eccentric inventor father, Pops. The family is doing well until some financiers back out on some of Pops' inventions and the family wakes up one morning to find that they, and their stuff, are all set up in Central Park because they are penniless. It's written like a children's book, and ...more
Jun 22, 2013 rated it it was ok
Weird. I wish I could remember which reviewer prompted me to purchase this graphic novel/fairy tale/fantasy for a young adult library. I would surely never trust their opinion in the future...

"After the Fall" is written by Vicotria Roberts, a cartoonist for "The New Yorker." She says she has been thinking about this story for seventeen years. It might have been more relevant had she actually written it when she began thinking about it. I think James Thurber fans of old might have gotten a kick o
Dec 31, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
This is an odd but entertaining novella written by New Yorker cartoonist Victoria Roberts. It's categorized as a graphic novel, but I think there's too much text for that, even though it is heavily and charmingly illustrated. The story is of an eccentric and wealthy family who, after losing all their money, move into Central Park with all of their belongings and their three pugs. They live there for the better part of a year, surviving mainly due to the good graces of their cook and housekeeper ...more
Mimi Pond
Nov 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing
"After the Fall" will surprise you. If you think this is is just a light, whimsical read, think again. Brilliant and nuanced, it sneaks up on you with its depth. And personally, I think all books should be illustrated! I loved it and I also recommend it as a great gift book for the holidays, for anyone who loves Victoria Roberts' cartoons, for anyone who loves New York City, for anyone who loves Central Park. "After the Fall" has it all!
Aug 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: a-good-one-yes
I had to read something a bit lighter after the roller coaster ride Chevy Stevens took me on so I picked up this little gem. Oh my goodness. I don't know if I can actually call it light. While the humor is mostly sophisticate dry New Yorker style. There are places where it turns a tad raw and has one in stitches. Still I had to pick it up, to see what one writers opinion and perspective would be on a rich man and his eccentric off spring would survive as a sudden poor family in the wilds and sav ...more
I'm really enjoying this book! It's light & funny, but is about a serious topic.
Jan 05, 2013 rated it liked it
Written and illustrated by Victoria Roberts, an illustrator for The New Yorker, this book reminded me of why I both love and loathe The New Yorker. Sometimes I enjoy it, and sometimes I think it was founded as part of an elaborate Emperor’s New Clothes literary scheme, wherein bad stories and jokes are touted as funny and/or brilliant simply to see if wannabe intellectual urbanites will pretend said bad things are funny and brilliant to seem sophisticated and part of the in crowd (the other opti ...more
Victoria Roberts is a cartoonist for The New Yorker. She says that she has been thinking about this story for 17 years which means she had it mind before she became a contracted cartoonist. That is a long time to think about a story and I suspect part of the reason is that she had to build up a reputation for excellence before anyone would publish this odd little book.

Don't get me wrong, although this is an unusual and weird tale, it is worth reading. I just recommend that you suspend all disbel
Sep 25, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2016
I'm glad this was a quick read, because it was kind of blah. It's classified as a graphic novel at the library, but it doesn't have panels and it looks and reads more like a kid's first chapter book. There were multiple illustrations per page and the text was a narration of the story that would not have worked in traditional, paneled graphic novel fashion.

Honestly, there was nothing special about this book. A rich family loses "everything" and then lives in Central Park until they can get back o
Oct 19, 2013 rated it it was ok
Huh. This is a "comic" novel about a family on New York's Upper East Side who find themselves penniless one day and all their belongings mysteriously transported to Central Park, where they make their new home.

It's a strange little book, obviously trying for "whimsical," but I guess I don't find chain-smoking as charming a personality trait as the author apparently does. There are a few mildly funny moments, mostly revolving around the daughter's attempts at producing a talk show in the park, bu
Sep 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed the illustrations. The story was good---I wanted to like the whole book more but I wanted more more more to the story. That said, I am kind of nutty about wanting to dive deep into stories and this was not that kind of read. Originally I reviewed it at 2 stars because of that but upon further reflection realized that I should review it for what the book is-which is a quirky story with wonderful illustrations. That said, I gave it 4 stars. It is not my particular cup of tea, but ...more
Jul 12, 2014 rated it liked it
Starting with the positive....s ofcourse:
This was a very short and sweet thing of a book. I appreciated how Roberts put depth in her story, even as she depicted parts of the story in silly pictures.
I honestly do not see the hubbub, the hallelujah, the YOWZA bout this read. All the awesomesauce comments on the front and back of the book. I didn't see it as ALL THAT. And I thought there would be...more. Okay maybe because all the comments threw me off but the plot line was TOO simple, I felt.
Aug 25, 2014 rated it liked it
The delightful whimsy of this book fails to balance the darkness of the subject. For me, the horror of homelessness during the financial collapse topped off with "checked out" parents leaving two kids to survive in a magical Central Park left an awful taste in my mouth whenever I laughed at the imaginations and illustrations.

I can't say that I didn't enjoy the book. But,I have to be honest and admit that my gut is horrified by each and every chuckle this book gave me.
Jan 16, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2013-fiction
When I picked up this graphic novel in the adult section of my library, I wasn't sure whether it had been shelved properly, and should actually have been in the YA section. But, I guess the story is more of an adult story (dealing with the loss of your fortune) even though it is told from the point of view of one of the children. It was alright.
Jan 18, 2013 rated it liked it
This seems like the kind of book I'd be guaranteed to love--an illustrated chapter book for adults, set in the Manhattan of Wes Anderson's imagination. But guess what? I didn't love it. I didn't even like it very much. Will spare y'all my rant about poverty and privilege and provincialism, and just say that I was hoping for more heart, even in a satire.
Jonathan Ytreberg
Jun 11, 2013 rated it liked it
I'm not sure that this even really deserves 3 stars as a book or as a story. I abhor stories that exist solely for the purpose of eavesdropping on the characters when nothing REALLY happens to them and for me the only saving grace for this book was the pictures and the literary knowledge of the character "Sis". I just wish there had been a bit more substance here behind the cute pictures.
Dec 22, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
If you enjoy The New Yorker for the cartoons, think pugs and squirrels are superbly suited for fiction, want a quick read, and are prepared for each moment to be a delight, I highly recommend Victoria Roberts illustrated novel.
Jan 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: quirky
An entertaining illustrated novel about an eccentric and well-to-do family who, after a sudden change of fortunes, set up housekeeping in Central Park. Roberts is a cartoonist for The New Yorker, and the illustrations are a delight.
Marc Mason
Nov 26, 2012 rated it liked it
An interesting piece of illustrated fiction, done by one of the best cartoonists working today. The story meanders, and you do begin to wonder where Roberts is going with it all, but the last couple of pages deliver a solid, earned ending.
Meredith Webb
Mar 15, 2013 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Kinds and adults alike
Recommended to Meredith by: Loretta Dagna
This book was amazing as it was basically set in the same world I lived in as a Park Av nanny - even down to the places I went with the kids in the park.

A great tongue-in-cheek look at the world of New York's elite and beautifully illustrated. Fun for young and old.
Beth Blahut
Dec 20, 2012 rated it really liked it
Delightful! I have always loved Roberts cartoons and reading an entire book illustrated with her characters was a real treat. A wealthy New York family endures hard times, and after losing their home, they move to Central Park. It is a riot.
Nov 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book is insane. It made me laugh all the way through. If you love quirky and the New Yorker comics, then this is a must read. Pugs, Central park, trained squirrels, strange inventions...all there!
Sep 18, 2013 rated it it was ok
This might come under "magic realism" which I normally like. Sort of a fairy tale by cartoonist for The New Yorker. And if you're familiar with that I'm not literary enough or cool enough or ...something.
It's a chapter book for adults who read the New Yorker and/or live in New York. A rich family loses its money and suddenly lives in Central Park, whimsically surviving, until their equilibrium is restored.
Feb 23, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-in-2013
2.0 stars
Corrinne Hills
Apr 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
Just fun...
Nov 30, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2013
Bizarre, yet entertaining.
Dec 17, 2012 rated it really liked it
Ahh, eccentric UEsiders. Loved this and do hope there are plans for either sequels or adventures in other parts of the city.
May 31, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2013
This is a weird, weird little book and possibly way too literary for me.
Dec 15, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction
A quirky novel about an Upper East Side family forced to live in Central Park after they lose their fortune. Okay, but didn't love it.
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