Emei Burell writes about her mother in original graphic novel “We Served the People: My Mother’s Stories” for BOOM! Studios in April 2020

Emei Burell writes about her mother in original graphic novel “We Served the People: My Mother’s Stories” for BOOM! Studios in April 2020

I’m really enjoying the push that publishers like BOOM! Studios and IDW have been giving toward great autobiographical content. IDW’s recent They Called Us Enemy is a great example, allowing George Takei to recount his childhood spent in forced internment camps in WWII-era America. BOOM! Studios have teamed up with cartoonist Emei Burell to tell another true-to-life story, with the upcoming original graphic novel We Served the People: My Mother’s Stories. Burell will use the medium to immortalize her mother’s childhood in Communist China and how she grew to become a pretty progressive champion for the people. Check out the details below.

Per BOOM!:

Emei Burell Reveals Her Mother's Unforgettable True Story in WE SERVED THE PEOPLE: MY MOTHER’S STORIES from BOOM! Studios
Discover One Woman’s Coming of Age Under Mao’s Rule in Communist China in April 2020

LOS ANGELES, CA (August 8, 2019) – BOOM! Studios today announced the new original graphic novel WE SERVED THE PEOPLE: MY MOTHER’S STORIES, available in April 2020, from Eisner-nominated cartoonist Emei Burell as she breathes new life into the stories her mother shared of growing up in mid-1960s Communist China and discovers a connection to her family history and heritage.

In China, an entire generation’s most formative years took place in remote rural areas when city kids were sent to the countryside to become rusticated youth and partake in Mao’s mandated Great Leap Forward. In an inspiring tale, Emei’s mother, Yuan Ye Ping, recounts how she ended up as one of the few truck-driving women during the Up to the Mountains and Down to the Countryside Movement, which sought to increase agricultural outreach and spur social and ideological change amongst youth.

Burell’s stunning illustrations honor her mother’s courage, strength, and determination during a decade of tremendous political upheaval and introduces us to a young woman in a new era of self-discovery.

Emei Burell is a two-time Eisner Award-nominated cartoonist and illustrator based in London. Burell is currently venturing into the video game industry but has dabbled in animation while working for Cartoon Network. Her previous comics work has been published by Image Comics, and featured in The Nib, The Believer, BOOM! Studios' Adventure Time series, and in Ed Piskor's Hip Hop Family Tree from Fantagraphics.

“Getting to work on such a personal story of someone who I love and admire so much is truly amazing. I can't wait to share with the world all of the incredible stories that my mother has shared with me growing up until now.” said author Emei Burell.

WE SERVED THE PEOPLE: MY MOTHER’S STORIES is the latest release from BOOM! Studios’ ambitious Archaia imprint, home to graphic novels such as Mouse Guard by David Petersen; New World by David Jesus Vignolli; Jane by Aline Brosh McKenna and Ramón Pérez; About Betty’s Boob by Vero Cazot and Julie Rocheleau; Bolivar by Sean Rubin; and licensed series including Lev Grossman’s The Magicians: Alice’s Story by Lilah Sturges and Pius Bak; Jim Henson’s The Power of the Dark Crystal and Jim Henson’s Labyrinth: Coronation.

“Emei explores her mother’s sometimes funny and often inspiring stories of working agriculture during a time of immense political change in China during the late 1960s,” said Sierra Hahn, Executive Editor, BOOM! Studios. “Throughout the constant relocations and endless days of back-breaking physical labor, Yuan Ye Ping lost none of her joy, humor, or sense of adventure and ambition—attributes her daughter shares and poured lovingly into each page of this graphic novel.”

We Served the People: My Mother’s Stories will be available April 2020.

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