Synopses & Reviews
Corporate exec Chad Roe had the "perfect" modern life. But the trophy wife, the prestigious job and the pills have always threatened to overwhelm him, and things go from bad to ugly when one night of debauchery hits the sobering light of September 11, 2001.
Comics iconoclast Rick Veitch (Swamp Thing, Brat Pack) writes and illustrates a graphic novel as singular in its execution as it is in the events it portrays. Half the height of a standard comic, told in landscape format with over 350 pages of story, Can't Get No features Veitch inventing a poetry unique to the medium to tell the story of a man and nation torn by tragedy.
Reeling from the financial collapse of his business, Chad Roe descends into a night of depravity, only to wake up a "marked" man literally his body covered in a permanent tattoo. But Chad will be only one of the many whose lives are forever changed after that Tuesday morning of September 11, 2001. Instead of picking up the pieces, he takes to the road, heading straight into the shell-shocked heart of America on a desperate search for salvation.
"Within this oddly shaped book lies one of the most remarkable achievements in recent comics history. Veitch (Maximortal; Swamp Thing) has given the graphic novel medium what may just be its first long-form poem. The drawings tell the story of corporate drone Chad Roe, who is given a new outlook when a weekend bender leaves him tattooed on every inch of his body. His life is further upended when the World Trade Center, where his office is located, is destroyed. This book's distinct style shines through with the narrative captions that accompany Veitch's remarkable art. They don't contain the main character's inner monologue or a narrator's comments on the actions. Instead they present a satirical yet lyrical commentary on the modern American life Roe was very much a part of, but is suddenly removed from now that he is a walking piece of abstract art. It's a biting evisceration of the comfortable place many Americans convinced themselves they had, a conviction that was challenged on 9/11. The words and pictures move in and out of synch with each other, sometimes exemplifying the power and possibilities of comics. When they seem to be telling two different stories, it goes even further to show how several ideas can be communicated at once. Fortunately, Veitch's ideas are strong enough to justify the treatment. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"[S]upremely, magnificently strange, and like nothing else I've read." Neil Gaiman
"Can't Get No is a smooth, magnetic yet intricate book, whose storyline, combined with the Hopperesque starkness and elegance of the artwork, is what they always called in the old days 'a good read.'" Ed Sanders (Tales of Beatnik Glory)
"Reading pictures and words together, as if this were a normal graphic novel, is as perplexing as interpreting or having a complicated dream. Most impressive." Booklist
"Veitch's ruminations on the nature of God and the mystery and meaning of life will strike some as overheated, but even without them, this is a remarkable allegorical tale." Library Journal