Disclaimer: I received a copy of Unfinished through a CBR giveaway in return for a prompt and honest review.
First of all, I unabashedly love Marilyn Monroe. While this makes me a prime candidate for anything involving the ’50s sexpot I am not usually a big fan of graphic novels. I tend to want more information than the format allows but Unfinished is vibrant & beautiful without sacrificing details.
Elizabeth Periale, our own xoxoxoe, combines well researched facts and quotes with inferred internalized dialog and colorful illustrations. The structure is easy to follow; chronological for the most part since many of her relationships overlapped with film roles. Periale’s focuses on Marilyn’s time in the spotlight including her contract disputes with Fox, her failed marriages and her lifelong health struggles.
Overall, it is clear the author is a fan of Marilyn’s considerable talent as well as her larger than life “cheesecake” persona. There is very little sensationalizing, something many Monroe biographers struggle to avoid, and her tragic demise is handled with care. In particular, I like how Marilyn’s death was presented. The empty black page, followed by newspaper clippings, felt like I was watching an E! Hollywood Story. In a good way.
My one complaint is some of the background color/ font color combinations make the text a bit hard to read. But overall the bold, Pop Art feel adds to the charm of Unfinished. In short, this is an excellent book to begin your dip into the vast Marilyn pool.