Although I thought I was completely unfamiliar with the illustrator Stephen Collins, visiting his site made me realize that I've seen his work all over the place. And I like him very much.
I brought The Gigantic Beard That Was Evil home from the library and my boyfriend said, "Looks tailor-made for hipsters." I told him to look at the book; he read it and subsequently bought two copies for Christmas gifts.
In order to keep away unknown and unwanted ideas and fears, the people of Here conform to strict tidy standards. When a stray hair portends terror in the form of untidiness, the entire island is threatened.
I've been inclined in the last few months toward graphic memoirs. This one is a graphic novel and an excellent representation of the genre. The illustrations are fine and detailed. An 80's song figures prominently in the narrative; once you encounter it, I'd suggest you go listen to it online to keep it in your head. The ideas and images throughout the story are a shadow of the lyrics.
There's a moral to this fable, but it may not be what you expect. It's a dark story, at its core, and there isn't much glimpse of light (which is fine with me, it's my sort of story), but Here does change because of its encounter with the evil beard.