GRAPHIC NOVELS

The Lady Doctor

Pennsylvania State Univ. (Graphic Medicine, Bk. 13). Feb. 2019. 254p. ISBN 9780271083742. pap. $24.95. Rated: Teen+. F
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OrangeReviewStarSardonic, plain-spoken, and occasionally self-centered, Dr. Lois Pritchard is no Hippocrates. Working as a beleaguered GP at the Welsh Llangandida Health Centre, she faces an endless stream of patients, from unexpected births and drug addicts faking seizures to people with unique genitalia issues. Also, she's nursing an alcohol problem; her estranged, cancer-stricken mother demands a piece of her liver for a transplant; a beloved friend and confidante has been found dead; and her new romance stalls when a tryst in the restroom goes awry. Indeed, Lois needs healing herself. The richly evocative yet simple pen drawings have single-tone backgrounds and highlights, with colors varying. Following The Bad Doctor, this second in a planned trilogy from Williams, a physician/cartoonist and founder of GraphicMedicine.org, focuses on themes of class, gender, and politics in a finely plotted, sometimes hilarious portrait that invites readers to understand the humanity as well as the barriers of their would-be healers. In particular, Williams shows extraordinary skill in depicting characters realistically.
VERDICT Adults and older teens interested in behind-the-scenes medical fiction will find this gripping.

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