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Paping #16: The Teachers Edition
posted September 11, 2007
 

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Creators: John Mejias
Publishing Information: Self-Published, soft cover, 80 pages, 2007, $10
Ordering Numbers: 9781427616388

Sporting 80 over-sized pages in each of its limited-to-1000 printed copies, a beautiful looking silk-screened cover and dense, mysterious insides, Paping #16: The Teachers Edition at the very least provides a package of wonderful value. You might want it just for that reason. Mostly a collection of John Mejias' stories about various travails encountered while teaching (there are a few other contributors), drawn from the initial issues of the Paping series, the expressive art captures the swirl and intensity of any job involving a bureaucracy, overstressed employees and/or children -- let alone all three. It may feel by the end that you've been babysitting rather than reading, such is the work's overall intensity. There are other things to admire as well: the various narrative approaches, for one. It's not easy work, and I'm not sure the craft elements don't completely overwhelm what are at heart pretty simple, universal stories. Still, this is a rewarding book for those who choose to wrestle from it its best qualities.