Love & the Celebrity Crush

In my book Love: a Discovery in Comics (just out in stores!) I explore the Seven Year Itch, together with a therapist, who convinces me that what I need is to look about me for a new Love of my Life…

visualisation

My favorite actor is Robert Carlyle – on whom I have a Celebrity Crush. Check this drawer of almost all of his movies I collected:

carlyle-drawer

The picture of him that I used in the book is his incarnation as Dr. Nicholas Rush in Stargate Universe – where he is a tormented brilliant scientist:

dr-rush

I guess I have a thing for tormented brilliant scientists. Now that I think about it, Yiri is a tormented brilliant scientist in his own right – only a lot less moody than Dr. Rush, and not located at the other end of the universe, which is convenient.

The thing I like most about Robert Carlyle as an actor is his versatility. Look at all these different roles he has played!

From psycho Begbie in Trainspotting (1996)…

begbie1

…and again in the sequel T2 Trainspotting in 2017…

begbie2

…to the grieving & dancing widower in the very romantic Marilyn Hotchkiss’ Ballroom Dancing and Charm School (2005)…

marilyn-hotchkiss
with Marisa Tomei

… to shady dealmaker Rumplestiltskin in the TV-series Once Upon A Time (2011-2017), which earned him wider fame and a whole new fandom…

rumplestiltskin

… to the awkward barber in The Legend of Barney Thomson, his film directing debut in 2015…

barneythomson
with an almost unrecognizable Emma Thompson

…and British Prime Minister in the upcoming TV-film COBRA:

cobra

EDIT: AND, this just in, he played a 78-year old John Lennon in the movie Yesterday that was released this week! Uncredited, but it’s unmistakably him:

john-lennon

…and that’s just a small selection of the many roles he’s played in his 30-year career!

In my book, I have him turn up at the dating agency:

in-love

in-love2

And we go on a date!!!

dating

What happens next…?

crush

Find out by reading my book!

love-cover

Love is coming!

My newest book, on Love this time, will hit bookstores in June! It will be first available at the TCAF comic con in Toronto on May 11 & 12, which Yiri and I will be attending (find us at the NBM booth for a chat!).

love-cover

The first review, from Publisher’s Weekly is already in, and I’m really happy that they call it upbeat, good-natured and affable:

The latest in de Heer’s series of simple, cheery graphic novel guides to big topics like science, philosophy, and religion finds the Dutch cartoonist tackling the meaning of love. Taking her own romantic history and current relationship with her husband (and colorist) Yiri Kohl as the opening story, she expands into such subjects as the history of marriage, the chemical components of desire, the seven kinds of love identified by the ancient Greeks, and the Kama Sutra and Song of Songs. Her gesticulating cartoon avatar shares her expertise on romance novels and attends a speed dating event. It’s an upbeat and good-natured sampling of issues related to partnership, lust, and romance, but the topic of love is far too vast to be covered satisfyingly in a 120-page comic. The broadly smiling, roly-poly cartoon characters and bright colors make the arguments accessible to a fault. Ultimately, the cartoon version of de Heer reaffirms her relationship with Kohl, but she doesn’t come to any conclusions that could be considered truly universal. While affable, this is an unchallenging ramble through a topic that could easily provide fodder for an entire separate series of graphic investigations.

It is true that I found it hard to come up with truly universal truths about love. In my own experience, the subject is so complex, that when you want to condense it you either have to describe purely scientific facts or stick to personal experience, in order to avoid reverting to platitudes. In this book (as in all my books), I’ve done both: the broad view with facts such as the history of marriage, contents of the Kama Sutra and chemicals in the brain, AND my own personal story of being in a long-term relationship with Yiri.

prologue

sweet

Will our marriage withstand the onslaught that is the Seven Year Itch…? Read all about it in ‘Love – a Discovery in Comics!’

leaving

Oh, and I also threw in a few frivolities, such as this:

jealousy

Of all of my books, this is the one I had most fun with drawing. I hope lots of readers will LOVE it!