Sumo by Thien Pham

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Scott  is a washed-up football player who never made it, and whose girlfriend abandoned him along with his dreams of playing pro football. But things have a way of working out, in this sweet, poetic tale--and a new chapter in Scott's life begins as the old one ends. Offered a position in a Japanese sumo training "stable," Scott abandons his old life, his old name, and even his old hair color, and becomes an aspiring sumo wrestler. And in so doing, he begins to find some kind of center in himself...a center that had seemed lost for good. Thien Pham, the acclaimed illustrator of Gene Luen Yang's Level Up, returns as the writer and artist of a unique new graphic novel.Highly poetic and structured to echo the slow build and sudden clash of a sumo match, Pham's Sumo is an unusual and beautiful book. It's nearly a contradiction in terms: a delicate, deft, tender tale about...sumo wrestling.

About Thien Pham

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THIEN PHAM is a comic book and visual artist, based in the Bay Area. He is also a high school teacher. Pham illustrated Gene Luen Yang's Level Up. Sumo is his first solo work.
Published December 11, 2012 by First Second. 112 pages
Genres: Young Adult. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Sumo

Publishers Weekly

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The dual shattered dreams of a career in the NFL and marriage to his longtime girlfriend spur burly Scott to pack up and leave behind the life he knew, opting instead for total cultural transformation as a professional sumo wrestler in training.

Sep 17 2012 | Read Full Review of Sumo

City Book Review

This is definitely a message book, where Pham makes a point that one must basically “win or go home,” do or quit, and not waste anyone’s time.

Dec 19 2012 | Read Full Review of Sumo

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