“Save Our Slums”: I read Alan Moore’s JERUSALEM

for Modern Age:

Alan Moore lives in the past, and who can blame him? The rent is cheaper there. Jerusalem is not the first novel from Moore, though the Hugo-winning author is better known for writing bleak and gory comic books: the antisuperhero masterpiece Watchmen, the dystopian V for Vendetta, the Jack the Ripper tale From Hell. Moore frequently delves into the weird. His Swamp Thing series explores that age-old tale of “sentient plant meets girl.”

But in Jerusalem he has found all the weirdness and wildness anyone could want in his own backyard—quite literally, as the new novel uses real people and folklore from his hometown of Northampton. Moore reveals this economically abject northern English town, and especially its poorest neighborhood, to be the spiritual heart of the country and the world. “Every clearance area is the eternal golden city” is his creed. Jerusalem is the most powerful and poignant novel I’ve ever read about love of one’s hometown. Anybody who’s ever loved a scorned and broken place will find vindication and comradeship in Moore’s vision.

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