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“Noah Van Sciver has brought new soul to this hard, weird time in Lincoln's life. The Hypo is a story of suffering & yearning, artfully told.” – Joshua Wolf Shenk, author of Lincoln's Melancholy
The Hypo: The Melancholic Young Lincoln is the debut graphic novel from Noah Van Sciver following the twentysomething Abraham Lincoln as he loses everything, long before becoming our most beloved president. Lincoln is a rising Whig in the state’s legislature as he arrives in Springfield, IL to practice law. With all of his possessions under his arms in two saddlebags, he is quickly given a place to stay by a womanizing young bachelor who becomes his friend and close confidant.
Lincoln builds a life and begins friendships with the town’s top lawyers and politicians. He attends elegant dances and meets an independent-minded young woman from a high-society Kentucky family, and after a brisk courtship, becomes engaged. But, as time passes and uncertainty creeps in, young Lincoln is forced to battle a dark cloud of depression brought on by a chain of defeats and failures culminating into a nervous breakdown that threatens his life and sanity. This cloud of dark depression Lincoln calls “The Hypo”.
Dense crosshatching and an attention to detail help bring together this completely original telling of a man driven by an irrepressible desire to pull himself up by his bootstraps, overcome all obstacles, and become the person he strives to be. All the while unknowingly laying the foundation of character he would use as one of America’s greatest presidents.
“Noah Van Sciver has developed a storytelling style that I find enormously appealing. In this book he's used that style to create a vivid and engaging portrait.” – Chester Brown, author of Louis Riel
• 2013 Stumptown Comic Arts Award Nominee: Best Cartoonist
• Ranked #1 on MTV Geek's “Best Graphic Novels of 2012”
• One of Library Journal's “Best Books of 2012: Graphic Novels”
• Ranked #3 (tie) on Boing Boing's “Best Damn Comics of the Year” survey
• Ranked #4 (tie) on Publishers Weekly's “2012 Graphic Novel Critics' Poll”
• Ranked #2 on Panel Patter's “Favorite Graphic Novels of 2012”
• Ranked #54 on Comic Book Resources' “Top 100 Comics of 2012”
• Named one of 10 Essential Graphic Novel Biographies by The A.V. Club
Originally published in October 2012
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•Comics website and blog
“Noah Van Sciver possesses one of the most original voices in indie comics. There’s little doubt about that.”
•Comic book website
“It takes a skilled and insightful writer to show us Abraham Lincoln in a different light, to give readers a unique view of one of the most-discussed figures in history. Noah Van Sciver takes on that challenge with his new graphic novel The Hypo: The Melancholic Young Lincoln, and he succeeds in showing me a Lincoln that I seldom have thought about before.”
The Comics Journal
•American comics magazine
“Van Sciver’s greatest achievement in this book is his storytelling restraint. He lets his cross-hatching gets across the grime of a Springfield that wasn’t as civilized as its inhabitants might have thought. He wants to show the reader a different side of the Lincoln we grew up reading about in the history books, but also wants the reader to connect this younger man to the future president … It’s a fine first major work for a young cartoonist.”