To anyone curious about life elsewhere, to anyone who’s ever learned about their elder family member’s lives and thought ‘Who are you’ or ‘How did I never know about this,’ to anyone looking for a short read with a lot of beauty and value
“Tales from behind the Window” is based on memories of an Anatolian grandmother and women she knew who suffered from male dominance over their lives. Writer and illustrator Edanur Kuntman seeks a unique way to express and give voice to women in her grandmother’s memories and in our reality who were not able to reconcile their inner emotional depth with their rural worlds in Northern Turkey. One long and two short stories included in this book revolve around terrifying emotional burdens such as forced marriages, being betrayed by patriarchs, and lost love, which have haunted and still haunt many in rural Anatolia.
Gorgeous illustrations to convey the story; they set the mood just right for what you’re reading. Great use of the space on the pages, too. It was key for me to remember that this was based on memories of the author’s grandmother, Sureyya, and not just a story that ends when you finish the book.
The art style: gorgeous, and cleverly worked to reflect the emotions of the moment. When the colors are full tinted over the images, it brings focus to the characters themselves as the ones defining the moment. Then we get the more fluid, multi-color moments when she’s on her own or with people she loves. I would love to have a physical copy of this, as reading it digitally just can’t do justice to the beautiful dual-page spreads. I would term it a minimal style, with the focus on the people.
The story: heartbreaking in it’s reality. It would have been sad to begin with, but getting to the photo of his grandmother at the end and remembering this isn’t just a story, this is someone’s actual life story, that was a powerful moment for me. This is the story for so many people.
Thanks to NetGalley and Europe Comics for a free copy in exchange for a review! View all my reviews