In his foreword, Vittorio Giardino talks about growing up amongst the survivors of the Spanish Civil War and how their stories -- their words -- helped frame the events of NO PASARAN. He writes, "whether or not I wanted it, some of their past has also made its way into this book." Originally planned as a two-volume series, NO PASARAN has been extended to three. And it's the incorporation of these voices, many of which are no doubt long departed, that has demanded the extension.
NO PASARAN finds Max Friedman, Giardino's reluctant spy from The Hungary Rhapsody and Orient Gateway, behind enemy lines in Spain, trying to locate a missing friend amidst a war between Franco's army and leftist revolutionaries. During a major offensive and subsequent retreat, Friedman gets cut off from the journalists that he's traveling with, allowing him to act as Giardino's conduit for documenting the harsh realities of this war.
Ironically, NO PASARAN began as a diversion for Giardino before completing his epic masterpiece, A Jew In Communist Prague. But it's becoming apparent that this series is carving its own well-deserved place in the canon of European graphic literature.
Peter Aaron Rose is a writer, producer and technologist who lives and works in San Francisco, CA. Under the pseudonym "Peter Siegel", he recently authored Killing Demons, a graphic novel available from Engine Press and Platinum Studios.