After taking part in a historic heist — 52 simultaneous robberies at the same time, in the same city — May and Eugene are now on the run not only from the law and double-crossed former accomplices, but also their violent past. What makes these criminals so surprising is that they are a young mother and her preteen son. Thus begins the intense, yet touching, Bastard, Max de Radiguès’s Fantagraphics debut and a book already nominated for the prestigious noir award at the 2018 Angoulême International Comics Festival. Bastard traces the deadly escape of May and Eugene as they crisscross the United States, encountering mysterious truckers, ambitious bandits, and senior citizens living off the grid in the Southwest. The duo race to get to their stolen cash and simply survive as masterful flashbacks clue us into how they got into this deadly situation in the first place. Both bloody and tender, de Radiguès focuses on the familial relationship as much as the exhilarating plot elements, and his clear-lined style adds depth to the brutality as well as the moments of maternal love. Full of plot twists and high tension, Bastard is a hard-boiled page-turner introducing an adolescent anti-hero that you’re sure not to forget.