When his brother dies in an accident at the airbase where Deshi Li works, his enraged mother sends him on a quest. His brother needs a companion for the afterlife. Deshi must find a woman—the deader the better, though she doesn’t necessarily have to start out that way. Out in the countryside, Deshi meets Lily Chen, on the run from her family, clever and bad-tempered. What happens when she meets a young man desperate for a body—any body?
Danica Novgorodoff’s new comic The Undertaking of Lily Chen is part Western, part ghost story, and part noir. It’s all original, though, shot through with spirituality and humor. Novgorodoff’s pen-and-watercolor art is vivid and vibrant, mixing traditional Chinese art techniques with clear-line cartooning to make a propulsive, lyrical story come alive. Ghosts haunt the edges of Novgorodoff’s artwork, but she keeps a close eye on her heroes as they come together, fight, and fall apart. The Undertaking of Lily Chen is a major new book from a major talent, and we’re proud to have Danica Novgorodoff illustrating the March issue of the Slate Book Review.
The Undertaking of Lily Chen by Danica Novgorodoff. First Second.
TODAY IN SLATE
The Ebola Story
How our minds build narratives out of disaster.
The Budget Disaster That Completely Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola
PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer
The Shooting Tragedies That Forged Canada’s Gun Politics
A Highly Unscientific Ranking of Crazy-Old German Beers
Welcome to 13th Grade!
Some high schools are offering a fifth year. That’s a great idea.
The Actual World
“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.