“The Year of Loving Dangerously is just the second book I’ve read of Ted Rall’s, the first being his account of his travels along the Silk Road in Silk Road to Ruin. I quite enjoyed the latter, how he combined his memories of the trip with accurate descriptions of the people and political climes of the countries he visited along the Silk Road. This book didn’t disappoint, either. A graphic memoir that presents this one particular year, a year of many hardships to Ted Rall, realistically and often humorously, it shows what a person can do if he or she doesn’t give up when faced with a seemingly insurmountable roadblock. Though Rall considered suicide at one point in the book, he fortunately toughed it out and carried on. This story gives hope to us all.”
So says Curled Up with a Good Book
The next one, from Andrew Wheeler, is more nuanced:
“Rall’s story of the summer of 1984 is worthy of a graphic novel.” He starts to say but: “It does have a tendency to come across as bragging. But Rall’s dialogue and narration keep the story flowing, and Callejo (artist of Bluesman) draws a lot of very attractive women in and out of bed with the young Ted Rall. I still have the feeling that Rall is telling this story in a very slanted way — that he’s very carefully chosen how to present this time in his life to make himself look as glamorous and positive as possible — but it’s a very readable graphic memoir that will make all men close to Rall’s age either remember their own youth fondly or wish fervently that they’d been more “active” back in the day.”
The Antick Musings of G.B.H. Hornswoggler, Gent.
And there have been some much more scathing reviews of late on that note of Rall just showing off, including Rob Clough on The Comics Journal’s site where the art was also criticized which surprises us:
“A book that was all over the place: frequently entertaining, often baffling and contradicting itself at any number of turns. If only it had been Rall’s own hand depicting these events, then this messiness might have held a greater appeal.”
Most love the art but some just can’t get into the more realistic style Callejo chose, apparently. Also, interesting that all women who reviewed this, and there were many, didn’t see Rall as bragging, in fact they admired his survival skills!