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Was She Pretty?, By Leanne Shapton


This excavation of the jealousies insecurities that sit on the fringes of some relationships might sound tiresomely voyeuristic but turns out to be captivating stuff.

Shapton, an artist and illustrator, here explores the emotional legacy of relationships, particlarly that of the 'ex', setting pithy texts - "Ben's ex-girlfriend... wore small white shorts year-round" and "Lucy's ex-boyfriend only dated actresses" - alongside elegant drawings.

The results capture the sadness, humour and rage that arises from the complex figure of the 'ex'.