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The Boston Globe

Books

Book Review

‘Hand-drying In America and Other Stories’ by Ben Katchor

There was no way Ben Katchor’s latest comics collection could have been a misfire. Gathered from the regular strips he did for the tabloid-size, urban-studies magazine Metropolis, the volume shows Katchor doing what he does best: illustrating the surreal and often hilarious potential of city life, as he observes it.

Katchor’s humor relies on cities for its strength: their grime, their dishonest denizens, and their beautiful decay seem to feed his imagination. This book hits its target in just about every panel; the worst one might say about it is that at times it becomes too philosophical — and what kind of a crime is that?

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