Yasmeen #1 by Saif A. Ahmed
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Full disclosure: This comic was pitched to Markosia, of which I’m EIC. I wanted to sign it but clearly so did Scout Comics and they signed with them. I’m disappointed because I really wanted to sign this book…as evidenced by the fact that I didn’t realise this was the same book when I bought it (we get a LOT of pitches), I just bought it because it looked and sounded great. But as soon as I opened it up I thought, “Hey, this looks familiar…”
Anyway, obviously this is exceptional. It deals with a tough subject, that of a young woman in a fairly affluent family in Mosul, Iraq, who are forced to flee when ISIS arrive. Stories like this, which humanise refugees, are incredibly important at a time when the media and politicians are making these people out to be vermin. They’re not. They’re people. People like you and me, who go shopping and play video games. People who were living happy, peaceful lives before war arrived and forced them out of their homes.
And that’s what makes this so good. This isn’t a comic about refugees. It isn’t a comic about Muslims. It isn’t a comic about Iraqis. It’s a comic about people. People who happen to be refugees. Who happen to be Muslims. Who happen to be Iraqis. But, first and foremost, they’re people.
And that’s why I wanted to sign it to Markosia. and why I will be forever disappointed that we didn’t.