HUSH by Manta Ray
I first heard of Hush it was after we started organising and talking about CSA. A friend mentioned that HUSH is a very hard-hitting book on CSA. I looked up the net and found out that it was a graphic novel. I haven’t read too many graphic novels before (infact I think this is the first one). I went to their website and it seemed pretty interesting. So we contacted them and asked them if they will send us a review copy. They were prompt and I personally met Pratheek who handed over Hush to me.
I had met him at about 9pm to take the book and I finished reading it the first time but 10:30pm. The first time when I read the book what hit me was the force in the book the sheer directness. No beating around the bush. The book is thin the graphic story gets covered in about 24 pages but by no means it leaves us wanting for more.
The book is about Maya a girl who is sexually abused by her own father and how she turns to violence and suicide when she has nothing else to do.
Hush is a story without any words and yet it captures things which many many words wouldn’t have been able to. It almost stands up to its name and also the taboo idea that the book is trying to portray
However because its wordless I rushed through the book the first time I read it. I don’t know whether it was just me or the book wants you to rush so I read it again the next morning absorbing even more than I did in the first read. The shades of pages do speak a lot.
The book makes me sad yet gives me hope that may be we are ready to talk about CSA finally.
According to me its a must read
Here is the book trailer
We also did a small interview with the writer and illustrator of the book. Read below to what they had to say about HUSH
How the concept of Hush come to you?
What was your primary aim in taking on such a dark and taboo subject in India?
Faculty of a certain prestigious college also has indicated an interest to include Hush as part of their visual narrative coursework. But one of the biggest recognitions for Hush is the fact that people working on the field, like subscribers of this blog have noticed Hush. We want as many people to read Hush and it’s great to see it go beyond a normal comic book and being used as a tool to spread awareness.
What, according to you, is the biggest stumbling block that Child Sexual Abuse Awareness faces in India?
Are you planning any more books on CSA?
Manta Ray is not exactly an issue-based storytelling company. We are an entertainment company. But we want to tell realistic stories, stories of real people living real lives speaking in real voices. While we do not have any upcoming stories about CSA specifically, if there is a compelling reason to tell a story from a CSA perspective, I’m sure we will.
Reviewed by Monika