Epileptic vol 1 – David B

After receiving such critical acclaim, I would have to be a cretin to dislike this memoir of David B’s childhood in France during the 1960s and 1970s. What promises to be a tale of the author’s brother and their family’s struggle with his epilepsy turns out to be about David B’s decline into isolation. He discusses, at times metafictionally, his extended family, their sufferings and shame over a disease they can’t control, and their attempts at alternative medicine and diet as remedies, which expose typical human hypocrisy all the while illustrated in a magical—if flat—style where thoughts and ailments take on mythical personas. And yet despite all these characteristics—or perhaps due to them—I found the narrative weak and have no impulse to continue with the story.