“The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay” by Michael Chabon
It also won the 2001 Pulitzer Prize for fiction, in case you don’t believe me. 😉
Combining historical fiction – both of World War Two and the birth of comic books in America – Chabon weaves a stunning tale of the lives of two cousins; Ambitious Brooklyn Boy Sammy Clay and talented Czech artist Josef Kavalier. Together, these two poor kids create the characters that will build them (and the company they work for) a comic book empire, while dealing with the ramifications of the war on Josef’s family members back home, and Sammy’s self-discovery of his sexuality. There’s a free-spirited female artist, Rosa, who inspires a comic book character, as well as Josef, and winds up forming the third point of an unusual “love triangle.” There’s tragedy and humor and delightful interludes where we hear the story behind these comic book creations. There’s also magic, and scheming, and Salvador Dali and Orson Welles even make appearances.
You know you want to read it. You won’t be sorry.