Paul Has a Summer Job

After impulsively dropping out of school and working at a dead-end print shop apprenticeship, Paul is asked at the last minute to become a counsellor for a summer camp for underprivileged kids. He doesn’t like solitude, the woods, or kids, but he accepts anyway. Since this is a standard coming-of-age story, by the end of the summer he’s challenged himself to overcome his fears, become a mentor for the kids, been touched beyond words by a handicapped child, and experienced his first love.

Paul Has a Summer Job cover
Paul Has a Summer Job
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Paul’s the kind of character who doesn’t care enough about anyone else to get even their coffee orders right and then wonders why everyone has no faith in him. He mentally tortures the family dog, kills his pet bird through neglect, and rebuffs his parents’ attempts to support him, only later realizing how good he’s had it. I suppose that’s a realistic portrayal of many teens, but I found myself wondering why I should care that deeply about this whiner. Getting too involved in his story only seemed to be feeding his already overblown ego.

The predictable coda to the story shows that he still hasn’t fully gotten over his self-centeredness, although I guess a certain amount of egotism is necessary for a biographical artist. The simplified art style is attractive and makes for an easy read, but the book is a fairly typical example of its genre. I kept thinking while reading it “this is the Canadian Blankets, only shorter”.

4 Responses to “Paul Has a Summer Job”

  1. Comics Worth Reading Says:

    […] In the rest of the book, R. Sikoryak, an incredibly talented mimic, presents “The Crypt of Bronte”, a retelling of Wuthering Heights in the style of a classic EC horror comic. Michel Rabagliati (Paul Has a Summer Job) also contributes a story, a flashback in which a teenage Paul, looking to kill time with a friend, rides subways, hangs around a department store pulling pranks, and roams the deserted site of the 1967 Expo. […]

  2. NBM Releases: Little Nothings 2, Miss Don’t Touch Me, Why I Killed Peter, First Time » Comics Worth Reading Says:

    […] The art reminds me of Philippe Dupuy and Charles Berberian (Get a Life) or Michel Rabagliati (Paul Has a Summer Job). […]

  3. Alexandria Says:

    Ok so I started to read this book and my teacher took it away from me. I was like what was that for? That was when she told me that the name God was used in an inapropreat way. I was like ok then. So I am going to ask my mom for it on my birthday.

  4. Reading: Paul Has a Summer Job | faith, hope, & love, but the greatest of these.... Says:

    […] unappealing art, no matter how good the story is. Well, I lucked out in numerous categories with Paul Has a Summer Job (in this review the guy calls it “the Canadian Blankets, only shorter”) by Michel […]




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