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Majnun and Layla: Songs from Beyond the Grave

Translated by Thomas Harrison and Aqsa Ijaz
Published by Life Drawn
Distributed by Simon & Schuster

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About The Book

The classic Persian poem of romance and tragedy captured as a sumptuous and richly colorful graphic novel, inspired by traditional art of the region.

Winner of the prestigious Prix Orange de la bande dessinée 2022

NYPL List of Best New Comics of 2023 for Adults

It is a story known around the world. Born of an Arabic tale, it has been interpreted hundreds of times in Persian, Turkish, and Indian languages. It has influenced playwrights, composers, filmmakers, scholars, modern popular language, the first opera of Islamic origin, and individuals as varied as Aleister Crowley and Eric Clapton. The tragic tale of love unfulfilled - Majnun and Layla.

Qays and Layla were madly in love. So in love, it has been said, that the young man could not contain his passion for his beloved, singing to the winds with such fervor he was given the nickname “Majnun” — The Madman. But their love could not be, as the lovers were separated by fate and man, leading to a tragic end for these star-crossed souls.

Experience the classic Persian poem as painted in the lush palette of artist Yann Damezin. Through his brush, we see a decadent and sensorial world, one as raw and vulnerable as the love between the Majnun and his Layla.

About The Author

Born in 1991, Yann Damezin is passionate about literature and classical music. After his baccalaureate, he joined the prestigious Émile Cohl school in Lyon in order to realize his dream: to become an illustrator. Graphically, his influences are rich and diverse including Persian iconography, Italian primitives, expressionism. These varied influences infuse his visual universe with a very special dimension, tinged with fantasy. He has released several graphic novels in France to great acclaim, including Majnun et Leili, which won the prestigious Prix Orange de la BD, an award granted to promising newcomers to the comics (bande dessinee) scene. 

Product Details

  • Publisher: Life Drawn (November 28, 2023)
  • Length: 184 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781643379487

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Raves and Reviews

"Through a vibrant visual tapestry, French cartoonist and Angouleme’s Prix Orange debut comics winner Damezin reimagines a centuries-old Persian love poem."

– Starred Publishers Weekly Review

Yann Damezin gives beautiful colors to this poetic story but above all gives it a modernity, already approached by the poet Nezâmi (12th century), by giving the female character as much space as the male!

– Benoit Gaboriaud (translated), L'essentiART

...a brilliantly accomplished exercise in style,
a hymn to tender, beautiful, subtle and luminous love.

–  Jean-Charles Andrieu de Levis (translated), ActuaLitté

...an undeniable success, both graphically and literary: all the pages of [Majnun and Layla: Songs from Beyond the Grave] seduce by their graphic inventiveness.

– Nicholas Michael (translated), Jeune Afrique

With [Majnun and Layla: Songs from Beyond the Grave], whose very rich graphic work competes with a text of rare quality, Damezin offers an opus as surprising as it is exceptional in the field of contemporary comics.

– Lea Polverini (translated), Middle East Eye edition francaise

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