Two summers ago I read and loved Evie Wyld's novel All the Birds, Singing. Now she's released a graphic memoir, illustrated by Joe Sumner, about some aspects of her childhood growing up in Britain and Australia. Everything is Teeth is the story of her childhood obsession with sharks--a not-unrealistic obsession, given their frequent appearances along the Australian coast. But in her singularly focused way, Wyld couldn't get her mind off of them, reading about them in books, including one about Rodney Fox, who survived (barely) an attack by a great white. Sharks follow her everywhere; she fears they're under her bed, behind the couch, waiting for her.
But there's a subtle understory here too, one of family. Wyld's shark fears get stronger when her older brother begins to repeatedly get into trouble, including with police. They grow as she watches her father drink and drink. And yet, the family doesn't splinter apart. They return to Australia, her mother's home, and regroup and pull together.
The writing here is spare but lovely. The illustrations are wonderful; this is Sumner's first graphic book, but he's got a way with a simple ink drawing, conveying lots of emotions with very few strokes. Color is limited and is primarily used for illustrating the (quite explicit) shark attacks, driving home their importance to the young Wyld.
So, two in a row that I loved from Evie Wyld. Can't wait for her next book, whatever form it takes.