The follow up to last year's It Never Happened, New Construction features two new comics novellas, "Backyard" and "Household." Each is tautly rendered in Alden's forceful pencil line. New Construction is aptly titled in that it is put together diferently. It is a bifurcated edition, with the first tale, "Backyard," being both tightly rendered and printed on a (relatively) bright cream colored stock, while the second, "Household" is far more loose and expressionistic in its rendering and is printed on a dull light gray newsprint. It is worth noting here that the reproduction quality in New Construction is significantly superior to that of It Never Happened; the pencil work in both stories here is crisp and clear. (We've posted a preview on ello, HERE, but the photos don't really do the work justice.) The stories, however, are a bit darker, narratively speaking, dealing with the tensions beneath the surface in relationships of all stripes, and charting their roots to family dysfunctions. Sam Alden consistently produces comics that seek to provide an æsthetic catharsis for emotional devastation. The works in New Construction are confrontations with personal demons that take place in pencil on paper.