Laurie Penny and Molly Crabapple journey to Greece to cover the state of the nation following financial collapse. Discordia reports on the struggle of normal people who have gone from living comfortably to the other side of the poverty line. They look at the failings of the government and austerity measures that are making things worse and the rise of fascism and violence towards immigrants.
It’s an eye-opening look at a country many of us wouldn’t hesitate to go to on our summer holidays. Perhaps it is a little one-sided but it’s a side we don’t really get to hear about. My heart goes out the people of Greece whose lives have been ruined by economics and the innocent who are blamed in the backlash. It’s also quite critical of traditional press, both in Greece and at home, looking at the natural evolution of reporting in the digital age but Laurie also explains how it’s hard making a living as an independent journalist. Sometimes she is not welcomed on either side of the picket line.
Of course, what sets Discordia apart from other pieces of journalism is Molly’s wonderful illustrations. The ink and pencil drawings are the perfect medium for ebooks, something that the eInk renders well. I will admit to reading it on my iPad for the subtleties of colour but really, they don’t need to be seen in colour to be appreciated. They are a mix of sketches on ruled notebooks, made on the spot, and more considered drawings done from photos and memories. Laurie’s text and Molly’s drawings were done independently of each other but they fit together seamlessly, drawn from the same experiences.
I’m not sure if it was a compatibility issue or a formatting error with the ePUB but there were some duplicate images. This could be on purpose, but the illustrations are placed at relevant points in the text, and where the duplicates appeared they just didn’t seem to correspond. I would be interested to know if anyone noticed this on the Kindle version.
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