Love the Way You Love: B Side is a love story if the title doesn't give it away. I haven't read the first collection, but from what I gather, there is an up and coming band led by singer Tristan, Like a Dog, there is a record producer and his fiance, Isobel (Re: Tristan and Isolde), and Tristan and Isobel fall in love and evil (or maybe just angry) corporate record producer blacklists Like a Dog throughout the L.A. music scene. Dramatic and tense, right? This book shows readers the results of these characters' actions, but is it a happy ending? Find out for yourself!
Normally I don't care for comics about music and bands, real or fictional, and all of the typical love, sex, lyrics as SFX, etc. that typically comprise similar comics (Re: Tear-Stained Make Up and Hopeless Savages to name two), but Jamie S. Rich's writing makes me care about the characters by giving them distinct personalities. He also captures the doubts and fears about love, but without making these situations overly angsty. So it's a romance comic, but angst-lite. Maybe because I'm happy with my relationship right now, but unhappy with my life in general that made this book appeal to me at this moment, but I don't want to forget to mention the art by Marc Ellerby.
Ellerby's style reminds me of a sort of Futurama meets MTV's The Head with a touch of manga chibi. It's both simple and detailed in a way that perfectly helps tell the story. Ellerby is great at capturing the emotions of the moment on the characters' faces and in their body language and the use of space between characters. Also included are a few one-pagers of Ellerby's Polar Opposites, which are funny shorts about penguins. I'm hoping Microcosm or another stateside distro carries his work, because shipping from the UK is pricey.
The synergy between word and art kept me from putting the book down and make me want to see out the first volume as well as other works by both creators.
I got this book through a swap and it was definitely worth it and worth the mere $11.95 cover price (which I would pay) at Oni's website. I don't recall what originally drew me to Jamie S. Rich and Joëlle Jones' 12 Reasons Why I Love Her, but I enjoyed it enough to want to take in more of Rich's writing and more of Jones' art, which I've done.
While I know money is tight for most of us and I'm often a hypocrite when it comes to finding deals elsewhere online, try to order direct from Oni Press, or better yet, from your Local Comic Book Shop and tell them who sent you there (no, ArmzRace does not get any money from this).
Image from Oni Press' site, cause my boys at Grand Comics Database and Comic Book Database do not yet have this book in their databases, but I think I'll have to add it to both.