Shortcomings by Adrian Tomine

ShortcomingsAdrian Tomine does New Yorker covers, and I really liked his book of cartoons about his process getting married. (To a white woman; he is Japanese.) Normally I would never mention that but, Shortcomings deals a lot with a Japanese man interested in white women, and what it all means, especially to his Asian girlfriend. So, maybe it is somewhat autobiographical. Ben Tanaka does indeed have shortcomings. But I felt for the guy. His girlfriend breaks up with him without really telling him, he dates unsuitable white girls a bit, then follows his girlfriend to New York to not only find out she dumped him, but to hear her give him a laundry list of all his faults. Which he may have, but still, way to kick a guy when he’s down. An interesting graphic novel exploring race and desire. Loved his friend Alice Kim.

Reviewed by Katie

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