TITLE: Everything is Teeth
AUTHOR: Evie Wyld, illustrated by Joe Sumner
GENRE: Graphic Novel, Non-Fiction, Memoir
I always hope the thing beneath the water turns out to be a man eater. And it usually does.
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This unique graphic novel tells of author Evie Wyld’s childhood and her increasing obsession with sharks following time spent in Australia. Sharks plague her thoughts and she is haunted by her fear and intrigue of them.
This book was a really personal and fascinating look at obsession. In some ways it was reminiscent of Lighter Than My Shadow by Katie Green, and I felt moved by the fear and anxiety in the same way – this is an honest memoir and Wyld has been open about how sharks really affected her childhood. The depiction of how the sharks seemed to literally stalk her was very well done, and I felt it was a greatly accurate portrayal of what it feels like to have a mind buzzing with obsessive thoughts.
There wasn’t a plot, per say, more just a collection of moments and memories that were surprisingly cohesive when put together. This is thanks in part to the style of illustration and the choice of a limited colour palette, which made the scenes of blood and violence all the more unnerving. This isn’t a book for the faint-hearted – some of the images were very unsettling, but I thought it really showed how terrified Evie must have been.
If I think the worst, then the worst is unlikely to happen.
My one criticism is that I felt that Evie was very detached from the other characters in the book. In some ways they could not have been there at all and I wouldn’t have noticed. I couldn’t decide whether this was done on purpose, to emphasise how focused she was on the sharks (at the expense of relationships), or if it was a part of the story that was just neglected. There was hope at times, like when Evie’s brother was getting beaten up and found comfort in her shark stories – but his hardships at school were never followed up, and I would have liked to have known more.
Star Rating: ★★★★ (4/5)