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Love is Love
Edited by Marc Andreyko
Review by Drew Bittner
IDW Publishing Paperback  ISBN/ITEM#: 9781631409394
Date: 10 January 2017 List Price $9.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /

Sometimes a tragedy happens...and it must be answered. The murder of 49 men and women in a nightclub in Orlando demanded a response. LOVE IS LOVE brought together comic book creators to contemplate this tragedy and make something to benefit the families of the victims and the survivors.

It is an important work.

In the wake of tragedy, writer/artist Marc Andreyko asked his many friends on social media if something couldn't be done. Wasn't there some way to help? Can this community come to grips with the grief and the horror that this tragic event produced?

And the community responded. Artists and writers, colorists, and letterers, editors and publishers volunteered their time in service of a vision: LOVE IS LOVE. This book is now available, and it is a must-read.

It is a series of contributions, one or two page vignettes, many featuring well known characters from a variety of publishing companies. One of the most striking is a single page drawn by DC Comics co-publisher and superstar artist Jim Lee, depicting Harry Potter, Ron, Hermione, and Albus Dumbledore with a quote from J.K. Rowling's work--all of which was approved by Rowling herself.

To choose but a few examples...

Kaare Andrews illustrates a quote from one of the victims, one of the most heartbreaking images in the book (which is full of them); Christos and Ruth Fletcher Gage (with art by Andrei Bressan) tell the story of a man who founded a business, discovered love, and stood up to those who would destroy all that he created; Liam Sharp delivers a few pointed words from Wonder Woman; Mike Carey and Craig Hamilton cast down a gauntlet to those who would do violence in the name of hatred; Chris Eliopoulos and Brad Meltzer provide a one-page lesson in standing up to bullies; Dan Parent shows how the events in Orlando struck home for Archie Comics' Kevin Keller; Rachel Richey and Francis Manapul show the tentative but exhilarating joy of discovering one's true self... and there are so many more.

The proceeds go to Equality Florida, a local organization that promotes equal rights for the LGBTQ community, to be distributed to the families of victims and survivors. Co-published by IDW Comics and DC Comics jointly, the entirety of the book was the work of volunteers.

LOVE IS LOVE reflects on grief, the corrosive effects of hatred and intolerance, the struggle to be accepted and to accept oneself, and so much more. It is a book of tiny miracles, each a piece of a beautiful mosaic that seeks to elevate, to understand, to expand the world through love. It deserves the widest audience it can find, so that its message is never forgotten.

This is a book deserving not only of reading but of being spread from heart to heart. Find it.

Highest recommendation.

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