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The Sculptor: 10/21/16
From looking at the cover you'd think that The Sculptor by Scott McCloud would be a graphic novel update of Pygmalion. It's not. It's about art, self worth, and leaving a mark on the world.
David Smith is failing at supporting himself through his arts. He is the last surviving member of his family, having lost everyone else to illness or accident or some other tragedy.
He is visited by the ghost of his uncle and given a choice. He can live out his life as something other than a sculptor with a wife, kids, and a small house in upstate New York. He would be happy but unknown beyond his immediate family. Or he can have the ultimate power over stone and metal to create any sort of sculpture he wants but he'll die in 180 days. He choses art over life and happiness.
While he's going through a fugue of creativity, including some incredible public sculpture bombs, the world around him begins to count down to his death. His mortality is there, affecting the entire city.
Of course his other possible future comes crashing into the fate he has picked. He meets a woman. They fall in love. They almost start a family. But this book is a tragedy, a self made one.