Graphic Novel - 2014
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"Corinna Parks used to have big plans. While studying English Literature in college, she imagined writing a successful novel and leading the ideal life of an author. After graduation, she moved to a big city and took a job at an advertising agency--just to pay off her student loans--but now she's worked in the same office for five years and the only thing she's written is ... copy. She longs for companionship (other than her cat), receives no satisfaction from her job, and feels numbed by the monotony of a life experienced through a series of screens. But whenever she shoplifts a magazine from the corner store near her apartment, she feels a little, what? A little more alive. Yet Corinna knows there must be something more to life, as she faces the question everyone of her generation is right now: how to find it?"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Pantheon Books, [2014]
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780307911735
Branch Call Number: GN F CHO
Characteristics: 1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 22 cm


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May 03, 2019

Shoplifter is a really unique graphic novel about a young woman named Corrina Park that’s stuck in a seemingly dead end job with dreams of writing a successful novel and living with all the freedom and adventure the life of a successful author entails. She feels trapped by her current life writing copy for an ad agency and sees no way out of her current situation without taking some big risks that she’s just presently unwilling to take.

This entire graphic novel is presented in black and pink inks only, creating a somber atmosphere which works perfectly for this story about a young woman that’s living a very subdued and somewhat dull and repetitive life. The only thrill she ever gets is from stealing magazines from a convenience store near her home. She secretly wants a new more exciting life but feels trapped by her financial situation and is unwilling to take the risks necessary to get that life. The only real risk she’s able to take is shoplifting magazines and the using the small thrill that comes from not being caught to make her feel better about herself and her situation.

Michael Cho has created a very realistic and relatable central character in Corrina and her world, her dreams and insecurities about herself and her life are ones many people will be able to identify with. The dialogue in the book and Corrina’s interactions with coworkers and friends are also highly authentic and believable. I’m impressed with how Cho, being a male author himself, was able to create a very authentic and convincing female character with much of the dialogue in the book being Corrina’s own internal thoughts. This might be due to the fact that he sticks to successfully recreating interactions, experiences, thoughts and feelings that anyone regardless of gender can identify with.

This is a just very unique and refreshing graphic novel by a Canadian author that is well written. Combined with unique, consistent and well-planned art, this book presents a glimpse into the very realistic and mundane life of a young woman that’s struggling to find purpose and seeking small thrills to make her feel more alive on days she feels beaten down by life.

If you want something totally different from your more common superhero or escape fiction type graphic novels then definitely give Shoplifter a look. It’s a quick read and almost feels like it’s just the beginning of a greater story. Unless Cho decides to write a sequel one day, this may leave you wondering what happens to Corrina Park next as you’ll only get a short glimpse into her life here but that may very well be the only real disappointing aspect of this book.

Apr 24, 2018

Ink and single tone drawings okay. Twenty-something characters. Protagonist is female (author is male). Dialogue uninteresting, bitter tone, little storytelling.

lydia1879 Feb 03, 2018

This was a pleasant surprise that I picked up on a whim from the library.

What hooked me was a pink and black duochrome art style. The pink was neon and loud and I paused. Is this even readable? The colour was so loud, but I borrowed it just to see.

I deeply related to Corinna Park's story. She wants to be a writer but is writing copy for an advertising job. Stable jobs, no matter what they are, offer a lot to a lot of different people, but she feels unsatisfied with her life. I've felt that dissatisfaction too. When you're young, you tend to do that - to wonder if you've made the right choice a lot.

At times, this graphic novel was a little too real.

I saw where the author was going with the ending, but it felt a little abrupt. HOWEVER, the man illustrated it and wrote it himself and that is a mammoth of a job.

A quick read, and a nice palette-cleanser.

Nov 06, 2017

I usually like a story where nothing happens but this did not catch me. The art is pretty and well done; it is easy enough to read. Good use of color versus line work. But the story just kind of kept going, never really catching me.

Nov 05, 2015

The art is solid, though I'm not a big fan of pink. The story is pretty mundane, but does a good job of portraying the stupidity of mobile devices, social crap, and US city life. Makes me wish the character would burn down her neighborhood, but instead she uhhh buys some notebooks. Good but perhaps overrated.

May 28, 2015

I really liked the illustrations, but there's not much to the story here.

Dec 13, 2014

This is a quick read but not because it's shallow in any way. The art and story really lend themselves into showing the disconnect between doing what you've been doing and making that jump into doing what you want. It's the boredom of the life you know you're better than and the wavering between continuing it and actually making the effort to make things better. Corrina is easy to identify with, her complacency in letting things go the way they have, and I only hope someday I can have her courage to move forward.

Adamrose36 Nov 25, 2014

Corrina Parks the heroine of this story is trying to find excitement in her life but instead of going out looking for it she waits for it. She would shoplift a magazine from around the corner store near her apartment to feel the satisfaction, and excitement her life is missing. In today's world not many people like working where they do but they keep the job because the pay is good, or they can't find something better. But does Shoplifting lifting really make you feel alive? Taking something you didn't have to pay for?

KateHillier Nov 12, 2014

A very timely release. An entire generation is going through something like this and that is probably where it's appeal ends. Corrina Park, our heroine, has been living in the big city for a few years now. She's an English major who works at an advertising agency - a job which she doesn't particularly like and can see herself getting stuck in. She's lost, disconnected, and every once in awhile she'll shoplift a magazine to bring that little bit of excitement to her life. This is more of a musing sort of story. The reader either can identify with Corrina or maybe knows someone that sounds like her; someone waiting for something to happen to her instead of going out and making it happen. As I said, very timely, and the art and colour scheme (simple drawings with just black, white, and pink as a scheme) give it that surreal quality that make you feel just as weighted down as Corrina does.


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