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Sass And Love In Doughnuts And Doom

Balazs Lorinczi
$14.99
Top Shelf

Margot Grapes is having a very bad day and all she wants is to forget it all for just a few moments with a bag of chocolate doughnuts. In search of sugary comfort, Margot jumps on her broom — oh, yes, right! — witches are somewhat common in this world but not so common as to be humdrum bores — and flies to Midnight Froth Doughnuts where she encounters shop clerk Elena Rogers who is also having a very bad day. Horror of horrors! There are no chocolate doughnuts to be had! Sass and shouting ensue making for a very disastrous and literally explosive meet cute.

It’s a simple premise whose success largely depends on the quality of characters a writer creates and Lorinczi does not disappoint! There’s more to Margot and Elena than meets the eye. They’re both just trying to succeed in life while finding themselves under pressure each under pressure from their own snide and condescending personal villains that you’ll love to hate. For Margot it’s witch examiner Katie Banks who delights at the prospect of marking Margot a failure on a critical exam. Elena just wants everything perfect for her band gigs at Tizzy, a local bar managed by the perpetually cranky and eager to clash Vince. Really though, Elena doesn’t want to disappoint her band mate, childhood best friend, and ray of sunshine Bob. Sue is the empathetic coworker everyone deserves. And then there’s Margot’s witch familiar Stanley the snake whose presence Lorinczi makes quite loveable simply by his good nature and love of sweets. Even the most minor of characters such as Witch Hub desk clerk George and delivery man Dave are given personalities along with their purpose.

Of course it isn’t all talking heads in this story. Relying on compassion, goodwill, and humor, Lorinczi crafts a course to move Margot and Elena forward from their volatile first encounter to the tentative and thrilling initial steps of falling in love. In between those two stages Lorinczi takes great care to move Margot and Elena at a steady pace and in quite an entertaining fashion going from an uneasy truce to forming an alliance against the rather snooty Katie Banks to an awkward friendliness that allows Margot a vulnerable personal confession. Sure, there’s a couple bumps along the way – one really big one – but you’ll have to read the story because I’m not spoiling it!

Charming, fun, fluid, energetic are several words that come to mind to describe Lorinczi’s art. It isn’t surprising to find some animation work among illustrator credits in his portfolio. A limited color palette composed of shades of blue may seem like a curious choice. There’s a nice tension in how the calming blue tones underscore his energetic contour line work while also making the occasional accent of pink to pop and sizzle on the page.

The story has a real sense of being the underdog, mostly with Margot (obviously not on display in these sample pages) and I absolutely love how Lorinczi has them both supporting each other as the story progresses before ending it in a most satisfying way! With a debut this impressive I believe Lorinczi is a creator to watch!

Doughnuts And Doom was made for the Young Adult market and I think it should appeal to readers who’ve enjoyed such fare as Cheer Up! Love & Pompoms!, Lumberjanes, or Fence. That said, being a certain age puts me well outside that target audience and I enjoyed it for the sass (oh my god do I love the sass!), romance, and good storytelling.

Please enjoy the remaining preview pages below!

Look for Doughnuts And Doom at your local comic shop or bookstore or ask them to order it with ISBN 978-1603095136. Comicshoplocator can help you find a comic shop. Look for it at Bookshop.org or Indiebound. If all else fails you can find print and digital copies ($11.99) at Amazon.

January 31, 2023
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