The Ticking

Writer(s): Renée French
Artist(s): Renée French
Publisher: Top Shelf Productions
ISBN: 978-1891830709
Price: $19.95
Page count: 216
Year Released: 2006
Status: in print
Original Source: n/a
Other Collected Edition(s): n/a
Genres: coming of age; teen/young adult
Recommended for Fans Of: David Lynch's softer side
Possibly Objectionable Material: nothing specific, but the illustrations may provoke a general unease
If You Like This Book, Try: The Arrival
Also in This Series: n/a

Plot Summary
The Ticking is the story of Edison Steelhead, a sensitive young boy whose father takes him to live on a remote island shortly after he is born because Edison (whose mother died during childbirth) was born with a deformed head. A budding artist, Edison explores his limited world and draws from objects that most of us choose to ignore (facial scars, toilet paper, stray hairs, insects). As he grows older the rift between him and his father deepens, and Edison leaves the small island to attempt to make his way in the world.

My Own 2 Cents
I'm hard-pressed to describe this book's effect on me. I like it, but the emotions it invokes are not exclusively pleasant. Primarily, it's an uplifting story about a kid who escapes the hurtful influence of his arguably well-meaning but oppressive father. On the other hand it's a disturbing story about the nature of beauty (and its flip side) in humans and in the world. There's nothing in the book that makes it inappropriate for children per se, but I would imagine that parents would want to read the book themselves before offering it to their kids.

The strongest impression this book leaves with me is that it could be the sequel to David Lynch's Eraserhead, if the baby in that movie had been allowed to grow up.