Cover of graphic novel, THIS IS NOT A PIPE, by Tara Black - depicts cat drinking pool of blood


Beth has a pole through her arms. This is not a metaphor. A metaphor would be a lot less inconvenient.

On the other side of the room, Kenneth is creating a new religion. He thinks narrative is the operating principle of the universe. He also thinks he’s the hero of Beth’s story. Beth is worried he’s going to leave her. The creatures living in the pole may have stolen her cat.

Tara Black’s comic is surreal, dark, sad, perversely joyful, and if you bet someone they couldn’t find another book remotely like it, you would win. It’s a little bit about being with Kenneth. It’s a little bit about losing your cat. It’s definitely not about the pole.

One of the most potent, unsettling texts I’ve encountered.’  —Tracey Slaughter

‘Poetic, whimsical and painfully honest.’ —Dylan Horrocks

‘A strange and wonderful book, both surreal and very real.’ —Tina Makereti

‘A freaking masterpiece.’ —Pip Adam


Waitohi Library – talk and draw with Dylan Horrocks

Landfall Online – Robyn Maree Pickens

Book Club Monster Mash – Sam Duckor-Jones, Erin Harrington and Rebecca Hawkes

Kete Books – Elizabeth Heritage

Afternoons with Jesse Mulligan – Claire Mabey

Otago Daily Times – Hamesh Wyatt

Buy THIS IS NOT A PIPE by Tara Black