All four issues of the highly praised series that focused its creative energies on overcoming the difficulties of childhood and adolescence though comics are at last collected along with 32 bonus pages of sketchbook drawings -- and more -- in this nicely put together 282 page hardcover volume published by AdHouse Books.
This book took us quite by surprise, as it will anyone who has read or is even familiar with Cotter's previous and best known work, Skyscrapers of the Midwest. Skyscrapers, was a widely lauded work which originally appeared in a series of comic books before being collected as a hardcover graphic novel. It presented a relatively straightforward tale in which fantasy intertwined with reality that hewed closely to narrative norms. In other words, it is a work that in no way prepares any of its readers for the free flowing stream that is Driven By Lemons. Cotter, along with Adhouse Books publisher, Chris Pitzer, have here created a book that is, by all appearances, a facsimile of Cotter's 5 1/2" x 8 1/2" hardcover Moleskine sketchbook (although it is highly unlikely that it is actually a true facsimile, the conceit that it is is important to its meaning – Hold on a second there! According to this interview [which comes complete with a lengthy manifesto-like preamble by Cotter] it actually is a facsimile of his sketchbook, and he planned it all out in advance.). While some of the work it contains will be clearly recognizable to readers of Cotter's earlier work, most boldly charts new territory. In a nutshell, Driven By Lemons is a shining example of self-discovery through sketchbooking. Clearly, something has changed in Cotter's life since he completed Skyscrapers, and as he tried to adapt to his new environment – physical, emotional, psychological, or some combination of these – he kept a record of his travails in his sketchbook, tried to cohere it into some sort of narrative, and Driven By Lemons is the result. There is some truly adventurous comics work here; you can feel the inspiration. Make sure to crack this one open and take a look.
Now out of print :(...
In his latest outing, his first in quite awhile, Josh Cotter steps out into the the world of science fiction comics and finds himself quite at home. Nod Away integrates some of the innovative graphic elements Cotter pioneered in Driven By Lemons with the strong story-telling skilss that launched his career in Skyscrapers of the Midwest.