Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Some Graphic Novels I've read

I love graphic novels, but usually I read them so fast and in one sitting, in the library or in the bookstore, that I doubt whether or not they should count in my book count or not. Well, last night I read a really cool graphic novel, so I decided that now would be as good a time as any to bring up some of the books I've read this year that I neglected to review.

First, there is Zot. I read this in my Borders, on the first Friday of the year, I believe. Well, it was a Friday. Anyway, I was attracted to the book right away, because of it's author, Scott McCloud. This guy has written a bunch of other books: Understanding Comics, Reinventing Comics, and Making Comics. And guess what? All those books are written in a comic format! It's really cool to be learning about comics as you're reading them. So I read all of these a couple years ago, and when I saw this book, I quickly picked it up and read as much as I could before we had to leave. I couldn't finish it, unfortunately (I'll have to wait until we go back to Borders again), but here's what I picked up.

Zot is about 2 worlds. There's our Earth, where teenage girl Jenny (I think that's her name) lives, and then there's an alternate Earth, where there are flying cars and robots and world peace, where the boy nicknamed Zot lives. Even if he lives in an idyllic reality though, Zot's world has supervillains, and he's the hero who saves the day with his rocket boots and gadgets and boundless optimism. He never loses on his world. At the beginning of the book, I immediately think I'm missing something, because it's from Jenny's point of view, and it seemed as if they were already tentative boyfriend girlfriend, and she knew about his world, but she was missing him because he hadn't shown up for a while. But I kind of got up to speed, and there's cool saving the world fights, and Zot kind of realizes that on our Earth, he doesn't always win and stop the bad guy. Like I said, I'd have to read more to find out what happens, but I'm definitely going to pick this book up next chance I get.

It was probably sometime last week when I read this book, Dead High Yearbook. It was at the library, and I read it all in one shot. This graphic novel was... okay. Not something I'd rave about or recommend to everybody, but the stories were kind of good, and I really liked the artwork. See, I wouldn't be reading any graphic novel if I didn't like the look of it's artwork. This actually seemed to be a bunch of different styles, because it was by different artists. It was a collection of stories about the supernatural deaths of some high school students. It reminded me a little of the Twilight Zone or something. I wonder if there will be any other books like this in the future. I think it hinted at the end that there were more, but maybe those stories won't be told. I don't know. I don't need to get my hopes up.

Finally, the last book I want to talk about. I read this, too, at the library, in just one sitting. The art attracted me immediately, plus I remembered that a friend had once recommended the series to me. (Thanks Rainy! ^_~) It was a graphic novel adaptation of Alex Rider, Stormbreaker. Really a cool story. It takes place in England, and it's about this teen boy named Alex Rider, whose uncle is a secret agent, but Alex doesn't know it. One day the uncle is killed, and Alex finds out that all his life he's been trained to one day take his uncle's place. It's funny, because the first thing he says when he discovers the spy headquarters is, "Is this Hogwarts?" He gets all these gadgets and, predictably, uses them all in the course of the story to defeat the villain and his evil plot to take over the world.

In graphic novel form, I thought the story was really entertaining and funny. It was like when I read the graphic novel to the first Pendragon book, and found that I loved the series! Later I discovered that there are a couple graphic novels that come after this one, so I might find these and go through the first 3 books in the series that way. I don't know if I want to read the actual books. I might, but I won't count on it. There is also a movie of Stormbreaker, which I've posted a trailer to, but I'm really hesitant to watch it. Since it was a graphic novel, it was fun to notice all the scenes I'd read about when I saw them in the preview, but I've heard that the film actually isn't that good. It's a little too cartoony, and the believability of it flies out the window. It's an awesome story in book form, though not in a live action movie.

I'll try to be a lot better at reviewing the graphic novels I read in the future! I promise.
Coming up next, very soon: Shades of Grey, by Jasper Fforde.

1 comment:

Rainy said...

Ohhhh, you tried out Rider!

I actually haven't read the graphic novel. So no comments on that, but if it's good, I'll take your word for it.