Cover image for Johnny Jihad
Title:
Johnny Jihad
Author:
Inzana, Ryan.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
[New York] : [ComicsLit], [2003.]

[©2003.]
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : illustrations ; 23 cm
Summary:
Somewhere in devastated Afghanistan, John Sendel of Trenton, New Jersey, speaks his "sorry, short life" into a recorder. It is post 9-11, and the 16-year-old "social misfit" met "cagey pakistani" Salim, who introduced him tot he Qur'an and eventually drove him to a terrorist training camp. After his first, nearly failed mission-an assassination-the CIA nabbed him. He accepted their proposal to go to Afghanistan as a Taliban infiltrator in exchange for never being prosecuted and eventually coming home. Now, going home is moot. Crippled by a self-inflected wound, he awaits the bomb with his name on it.
Language:
English
ISBN:
9781561633531
Format :
Book

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Summary

Summary

John Sendel is a typical disillusioned teenager. The kind that snap and start shooting at their school. Part of a generation reared by television, he is willing to weild the impetuousness of youth in a self-destructive manner. But when he stumbles upon fundamentalist Islam through his friend Salim, his world is transformed. Now his life has a purpose: jihad. But the deeper he becomes emeshed, the more frightening the road becomes. Inspired by the story of John Walker Lindh, this is a chillingly real and hotly topical tale. In b/w throughout.


Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Somewhere in devastated Afghanistan, John Sendel of Trenton, New Jersey, speaks his sorry, short life into a recorder. It is post-9/11, and the Americans are bombing, but John's story began in earnest in the mid-1990s, when the 16-year-old social misfit met cagey Pakistani Salim, who introduced him to the Qur'an and eventually drove him to a terrorist training camp. After his first, nearly failed mission--an assassination--the CIA nabbed him. He accepted their proposal to go to Afghanistan as a Taliban infiltrator in exchange for never being prosecuted and eventually coming home. Now, going home is moot. Crippled by a self-inflicted wound, he awaits the bomb with his name on it. Based on the reported experiences of several young Western recruits to Islamic radicalism, John's story, even more powerfully drawn than written by graphic novelist Inzana, is alarmingly convincing, perhaps most in its portrayal of an anomic kid who sees salvation in ideologized violence and doesn't come to his senses until it is too late. --Ray Olson Copyright 2003 Booklist


Publisher's Weekly Review

Inspired by the experiences of John Walker Lindh and the Columbine shootings, this exploration of our culture's casual acceptance of violence and the emptiness of lower middle-class life concerns young martyr-in-training John Sendel. The story opens as he's about to die in an American bombing run in Afghanistan. A flashback to the early 1990s shows Sendel as an unhappy suburbanite with a nowhere job, an abusive, ex-military dad, and a remote, drug-dependent mom. He drifts through life until a colleague shows him the Koran and introduces him to an Islamic activist group. The group runs a terrorist training camp, providing a different kind of family for Sendel, and its anti-American teachings offer a purpose for his life and an easy explanation for his social desperation. Sendel sleepwalks through his Islamist indoctrination before agreeing to murder an American Imam. Once the police and CIA catch him, they offer Sendel a deal: go to Afghanistan and spy on the Taliban's activities. Inzana offers a moody tale of emotional emptiness and the perverse attractions of a pathologic cult-community as a basis for understanding Lindh's experiences. His b&w expressionist art appears to be done with scratchboard and is a striking vehicle for a story about individual self-invention that collapses into self-destruction. Although starkly engaging and powerful, Inzana's story is also melodramatic, clumsy and implausible, as he grasps for simple social or cultural reasons for Sendel's blindness to the logical and moral consequences of pernicious acts. Despite its flaws, however, Inzana has produced a bold fictional investigation into the roots of political fanaticism. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved