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One Hundred Demons

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  8,360 ratings  ·  612 reviews
In this graphic novel that's part memoir and part creativity primer, Lynda Barry serves up comics that delve into the funk and sweetness of love, family, adolescence, race, and the hood. Name that Demon!!! Freaky boyfriends! Shouting Moms! Innocence betrayed! These are some of the pickled demons you'll meet as Lynda Barry mixes the true and the un-true into something she c ...more
Paperback, 224 pages
Published August 30th 2005 by Sasquatch Books (first published August 13th 2002)
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Average rating 4.16  · 
Rating details
 ·  8,360 ratings  ·  612 reviews

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Mar 05, 2009 rated it really liked it
In my dreams of teenage trauma prophylaxis Kathleen Hanna hands me Pussy Whipped and this book as a 13 year old, before I lose my virginity. Avenue D is playing in the background: "Shit, you know they all just want to hit it./They're just talking shit 'cos they want it," which, although nobody will prank call my house at 3am to call me a slut for a couple years, is a revelation that rings true.

I come out of adolescence unscathed.
Ayun Halliday
Apr 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-novel
This book is the bomb and Lynda Barry is the bombalurina.

This book seems to be the crossroads, the point where she transformed from her perfectly incredible and delightful self, to the milk of human kindness filled, self-forgiving, fully honest role model and teacher that she is today. You can feel it.

A lot of things I'd been hunching about were confirmed herein.

The last story, about the monkey head stationery was very sweet, and made me happy for lynda.

Matt Groening may be funk lord of the uni
Hannah Garden
Aug 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is the best thing I've read in ages and I am sorely tempted to just start right back over and read the whole thing again right now.

November 2016 reread:

Joe got me this from Quimby's in late July last year when I flew out there to roadtrip back to New York with him which was our like sixth date or something maybe? Which tbpf I am not that charmed by stories of Going! Way! Romantically! Overboard! too early in the game, mainly because I tend to blow all my chunks early on as a sort of matter
Oct 13, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Malbadeen by: sarah
how stupid am I for not reading this before?! super stupid! It was awesome.
Highlights for me:

-"Common Scents" was hilarious.

-"Hate" was gratifying.

-The line, "This ability to exist in pieces is what some adults call resilience. And I suppose in some way it is a kind of resilience that makes adults believe children forget trauma" collapsed the chest of both my childhood self as well as my parental self.

-The dialog in "Lost and Found" with the arrow pointing to one woman, reading "super dramatical
Jun 27, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphicnovels
I caught myself thinking about taking up a paintbrush and water colors while reading this so I could paint out my demons too. I really love the one about the aswang (a scary dog demon story that her grandma tells her interwoven with a bunch of mother-daughter stuff), Dancing---amazing amazing amazing---just think hula + suave uncles dancing the twist in the kitchen + dancing baby-madness in the morning + trying to befriend the coolest dancing girl in the world. "Sensitive nose" and "hate" and "m ...more
Peter Monn
Jan 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Sooooooooooo good! Loved it. Check out my review on my Booktube channel at ...more
Nov 23, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: graphic-novel
Funny and poignant at times. Hard to tell which parts are real but I sensed some underlying pain in regards to the relationship between the author and her mother. I wished she had touched more this and growing up as a mixed child. She grew up with her Filipino mother but never mentions her father. The Filipino kids view her a strange due to her red hair, even being curious about whether she gets white lice versus their black lice and request that if she ever finds out she should mail them the ev ...more
Nov 09, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Tweens, Teens and all other tortured souls
Shelves: graphic-novels
Synopsis :NAME THAT DEMON!!! Freaky Boyfriends! Shouting Moms! Innocence betrayed! Rotten things we've done that will haunt us forever! These are some of the pickled demons Lynda Barry's storeis serve up comic-strip style, mixing the true and un-true into something she calles "autobifictionalography." Inspired by a 16th-century Zen monk's painting of a hundred demons chasing each other across a long scroll, and encouraged by a 20th-century editor, Barry's demons jump out of these pages and do ...more
Aug 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Lynda Barry confesses that she's not quite sure what to call this work: fiction? memoir? autofiction? autofictionbiography? At any rate, she admits that some things in the book are true and some fiction.

It doesn't matter what she calls it: it's a wonderful book.

It is the story of a young girl and all she faces: a semi-dysfunctional family, race issues, friendship issues (especially in middle school), death, sex, drugs, abuse, the many experiences of this girl's growing up. And, like life, it's
Sep 14, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I first read this comic on when I was 24, which was just old enough to appreciate the tone of regret, trauma, and fragile beauty. I was crushed when the comic ended after only 17 entries. Reading it again ten years later, the writing affects me in the same way it did then. I am surprised how well I remember these stories and how I internalized them to help me make sense of the pain of growing up. The economy of Barry's storytelling is amazing. In just 18 panels she can reduce me to tea ...more
Dec 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
A fun and moving collection of short autobiographical vignettes, spotlighting what Barry calls her "demons", inspired by a 16th century Zen monk art practice. Each story unfolds around a theme such as what different houses smell like, losing touch with close friends, and what it feels like to be an "other". I could relate so much to this book, since I am also the child of a Filipino immigrant father and an American mother (as well as an artist). I too share the memory of being teased for my clot ...more
Eve Kay
Aug 30, 2017 rated it liked it
Lynda Barry is amazing. She is very open about her childhood, who she is and what she feels. I should have read this in my teenage years, being lost and not knowing why I felt certain ways...Wait, that's STILL how I am...
Anyway, I liked What it is better because I think it scratched deeper. I don't know whether I mean it scratched the topic deeper, or me, but it certainly moved plains underneath me.
One Hundred Demons was hard to relate to because it lacked in the universal. Of everything.
Apr 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels
What a great book! A collection of short illustrated stories, really about the stuff that plagues us and weighs us down. They never head in the direction you think they will but always end up somewhere complete and satisfying. If you love to be in the company of someone who doesn't quite think like anyone else, Lynda Barry is a magnificent host. ...more
Mar 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017
This one is the M word. The people next to me on the plane were crouching away from me, possibly because you don't smell so good on a long flight, but also because I went back and forth between laughing hysterically and stifling tears. ...more
Jul 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
4.5 the dog section made me cry 🥺
Very very very good. Memoiry stories. I took a lot of breaks in between them and love them a lot. Harsh life growing up. The good bits. Caring for one’s demons.
Jan 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, graphic-novels
So very sad in places, but with an optimistic tinge. I really enjoyed the drawings and the explanation of how to use an inkstone.
It's amazing to me how well Lynda Barry has held onto the emotions and feelings that go along with being a child. Though she's 44 when she wrote this, she still evokes the magic of a kickball game so vividly, the desperate need for some kind of lovey (blankie or stuffed animal), and the awkwardness of the transition between child and adolescent. So much of this book rang true for me (I was weird and awkward, my lips were too big, I lisped, my last name always got me in trouble, I was heavier tha ...more
Brandi Johnson
This "autobifictionalography" comic was mentioned in a different comic I'd recently read. That author referred to it as a life-altering read. I don't know if I'll go that far, but I will say that I took screenshots of so many panels I should probably separate them into their own album on my phone. (Even though I own this book I felt so strongly with some of the panels that I must have them with me at all times.) She wrote & drew beautifully about being different and knowing from an early age tha ...more
Becca Mac
Dec 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed looking at Barry's collages between chapters, they were beautiful. I also really enjoyed her stories themselves, there was so much authenticity in them. She really captured the fears and sense of awe that is present in childhood, it was very nostalgic for me. And some parts were really funny and made me laugh. I also felt that even though it is in comic/graphic novel form and short snippets, her characters are emotionally complex. ...more
Dov Zeller
Dec 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Love this one. The first book I read by Lynda Barry and have read many since. It is still probably my favorite.
reading is my hustle
Nov 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
lynda barry out here bearing witness.
Wow! One Hundred Demons is chock full of the things we think about when we think about our childhood: mothers, first love, bullies, favorite objects, teenage blues, music, teachers, school, siblings... Lynda Barry has a unique style, and with big block letters and two-paneled pages, she brings the pain and humor of childhood to beautiful, colorful, cartoony life. The stories often tell of a certain turning point, a realization, a memory triggered by something that happens many years later, and B ...more
Prima Seadiva
Aug 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: the-arts, non-fiction
Once a Seattle local and a regular in the underground papers of the time, it makes me happy that Lynda Barry has had so much success as an artist. She deserves it.
Here she explores her childhood through drawings and text inspired by a hand scroll painted by a 16th c. Zen monk, Hakuin Ekaku.
I have always enjoyed Lynda Barry's art and humor. This book is tinged with both that humor and poignant self reflection as Barry examines, both purges and accepts her demons, a good example for us all.

In cas
Jun 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I have an especially strong attachment to Barry's work, because my favorite aunt sent me a bunch of her comics the first time a dumb boy broke up with me. I love a lot of her work--I've even used Syllabus in a first year composition class, which worked really well.

One! Hundred! Demons! may be my favorite, however. The conceit of using personal demons--the life moments that haunt you, form you, and stay with you--as the basis for comics is effective and affecting. I really loved this autobiofict
Jul 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
I get why Lynn loves it lol. It's somehow silly but also heart wrenching and truly sad at times. I was just instinctively very repulsed by a lot of the images, especially the ones of herself. I think that's sort of the point - you're hearing her story and made to sympathize with her and feel for her, but at the same time you're forced into the position of the bully/perpetrator because of how easy it is to be repulsed by the images of her, so you have to uncomfortably sit in both positions. I gue ...more
Jul 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics
Really enjoyed this book. A quick read and auto-biographical. The storytelling was top-notch. A collection of short story comics. It was nice to see where some of the demons went and the connections with the various stories was skilfully done. Lots of humour throughout although quite sad at times. Shows at the end how to make your own demons with some fancy tools suggested and sent in the direction of some company's website (I was not a fan of this) though all you really need is some paper and a ...more
Sep 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book has incredible art and sad, very true stories of growing up, but if I read one more graphic memoir about the author's crazy or disappointing parents and her sad, confusing childhood in the midcentury, I'm gonna lose it. ...more
Lynda saw a Zen Buddhist scroll showing 100 demons and, being a cartoonist, decided to paint her own. Though there are far fewer than 100 in her book, the demons she highlights are probably familiar to most people, even if they haunt us in different ways. Mostly, they attacked her in childhood, and often emanated from abusive adults. The demon of reliance is a poignant story, the demon of dogs a hopeful one, with a spectrum of others between. 3.5🌟
Sep 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
How have I missed Lynda Barry all these years? She calls this work "autobifictionalography." Part fact, part fiction, all interesting. Primarily dealing with difficult childhood and teen years. Will definitely seek out more of her work. And the final pages detailing the art materials she uses really made me want to run out and invest in my very own inkstone! ...more
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Madison Mega-Mara...: #60 One Hundred Demons by Lynda Barry 1 1 May 17, 2015 08:41PM  
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Lynda Barry is an American cartoonist and author, perhaps best known for her weekly comic strip Ernie Pook's Comeek. ...more

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