Wednesday, 19 July 2017

In Review - 'Women Who Kill' illustrated by Sarah Tanat-Jones.

'Women Who Kill'.

By Sarah Tanat-Jones and Deevine Devans.

Publication Date - 30th June 2017. (48 pages - ISBN: 978-1-908714-41-1).

HHardcoover - 12 x 16cm.

'Women Who Kill was released in early June this year and is an adult nonfiction title that tells the tales of nineteen female murderers throughout the ages. Beautifully illustrated by Sarah Tanat-Jones it is an informative and gruesome title for anyone with an interest in crime, comics and illustration.'

'There is nothing more shocking than the story of a homicidal woman. It contradicts everything we are told that womanhood should be about. And yet, history is splattered with violent femmes. This book profiles nineteen murderers from through the ages: the self-defenders, the vengeance seekers and the psychopaths.'

This is a new release from Cicada Books. A company that I had previously missed out on but came across when they recently contacted me prior to the East London Comics Arts Festival this year. They have actually been a busy bunch of folks since 2009 producing illustrated books for adults and children and based in the north London area.

This book tells a history of what was once stupidly referred to as the 'fairer sex' but seems timely given movies like 'Atomic Blonde' and 'Wonder Woman' showing us that women are often more than capable of kicking our males arses round the room. (And then apparently slaughtering you and maybe a few of your friends?) This will convince you to be a little more careful when you are rude to the woman at the counter in Starbucks or you cut up a female driver when you are rushing to get to work! Watch your ass men folk! These women are not to be messed with (Mr Wardle, my fifth form Physics teacher may have been right all along? And to think I just assumed he was going through a painful divorce?)

To be fair, this isn't a comic, so not something that I would normally notice or review but an exception is made here for a couple of reasons. The art by Sarah has a sketchy, airy immediacy to it's pages. A keen and sharpened eye to design has the colours floating and stabbing in washed out red, grey/blue and white. They have an iconic edge that tells the story really well as you turn from story to story. Each 'murderess' as they used to be known has a single striking illustration followed by a short summary of their punchy, kicky, shooty, stabby, poisony (I'm stretching it a little bit there) offences. Faces stare into the camera, hands reach for poison bottles, offenders celebrate and dance under nooses hung from trees and so on.

A small niggle would be that the writing side of the book seems a little bit like it could just be something you read on wikipedia. A little more flourish and poetry would have lifted this more (but that's just my humble opinion.)

It is however and grand little book. Around A5 size it has an iconic cover image on it's hardback and is only £7.95, absolute bargain.

Grab a copy at or follow this exciting company @cicadabooks.

PS This book also made me feel fortunate that I am far too old to be bothering with internet dating!!

Many thanks for reading.

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