For What It's Worth

Friday, August 8, 2014

Review: The Graveyard Book Graphic Novel, Volume 1 by P. Craig Russell, Neil Gaiman


18738869The first volume of a glorious two-volume, four-color graphic novel adaptation of Neil Gaiman's #1 New York Times bestselling and Newbery Medal-winning novel The Graveyard Book, adapted by P. Craig Russell and illustrated by an extraordinary team of renowned artists.

Inventive, chilling, and filled with wonder, Neil Gaiman's The Graveyard Book reaches new heights in this stunning adaptation. Artists Kevin Nowlan, P. Craig Russell, Tony Harris, Scott Hampton, Galen Showman, Jill Thompson, and Stephen B. Scott lend their own signature styles to create an imaginatively diverse and yet cohesive interpretation of Neil Gaiman's luminous novel.
Volume One contains Chapter One through the Interlude, while Volume Two will include Chapter Six to the end.

Goodreads

Source: Copy provided for my honest review

Review:
I’ve tried to read graphic novels several times but I have never made it through one. I always have a difficult time getting absorbed into the story. One or two words in a panel, skipping around often leaves me confused and unattached to the characters.

The Graveyard Book, originally written by Neil Gaiman, and adapted by his long time collaborator P. Craig Russell was an entirely different, and wonderful, experience. 

I was immediately pulled into this quirky coming of age story about a baby, who after his family is murdered, is adopted by the inhabitants of a local graveyard. As he grows up he embarks on all sorts of adventures with ghouls, witches, hellhounds and vampires.

There were the usual speech bubbles, of course, but there was also a narrative (I believe this is called a caption in graphic novel speak – forgive this newbie’s awkward review)) that rounded out the story and tied it all together without bogging it down.

Each chapter is illustrated by a different artist and although they stuck with very similar drawing styles, it was interesting to see each persons interpretation of the same characters. For example, Silas, Bod’s vampire guardian, is drawn with harsher lines in some chapters than others.

The Graveyard Shift is delightfully creepy, surprisingly sentimental and just plain riveting. I can’t wait to read Volume #2!

22 comments:

  1. I listened to it, lovely too :)

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    1. I bet it was really great on audio!

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  2. It's such an odd story but really sweet, too. I didn't expect that. Might have to check out the graphic novel of it!

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    1. It really is! I thought it was going to be kind of wacky or just creepy but the coming of age aspect is so well done and grounded in reality despite everything else going on.

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  3. I don't think I've ever read a graphic novel, but my son likes them. Maybe he and I can try this together. I'm so glad you enjoyed!

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    1. I'm going to see if my nieces and nephews want to give it a try. It's a great coming of age story.

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  4. I have been wanting to try a graphic novel and I just haven't done it yet. This sounds like a good match for Gaiman's work. So adding this to the wishlist!

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    1. I haven't had much luck until this one. The artwork is great but it also reads more like a regular book.

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  5. That's great you found a graphic novel that worked for you!! I didn't know this was a graphic novel, though I want to read the narrative version first.

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    1. I'm going to try a few more now that this book worked for me. I haven't read anything by Gaiman before but I definitely will now.

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  6. I'm not big on graphic novels either, so I'm glad that you hit it off with this one. Maybe I'll give it a go too, and see if I end up feeling the same way. Happy Friday, Karen!

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    1. It felt more like a story than POW! KABLAM! Lol It was very well done.

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  7. Delightfully creepy with the mutliple artists sounds like a great journey reading this one

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    1. It was really interesting to see each artists interpretation of the characters. There's some leeway because they are aging but still very cool.

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  8. THAT IS SO AWESOME. A graphic novel of that book? Want. I haven't actually read the novel but I'm kinda in a graphic novel/comics/manga period. Thank you for sharing :D

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    1. I haven't read the original either but this was so well done that I want to.

      What graphic novels would you recommend to a newbie like me?

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  9. Woohoo! So glad this was the exception, aside from Archie Comics, I can't read graphic novels either. I get too distracted by the illustrations.

    Also I need to read at least 1 Neil G. book in my lifetime.

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  10. Fantastic. I'm glad you finally found one that you liked. I read this book (the actual book, not the graphic novel) back when it first came out, and really liked it, so I might have to check this out as well.

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    1. I need to read the book. This was so good that I want to.

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  11. Wow, love it! I'm not a graphic novel person either - like you, I find it hard to get invested in the story and feel connected to the characters - so this is very encouraging to me! I really want to try this now! And surely, this can't be the only really well done graphic novel out there; maybe I just haven't found them yet.

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  12. The illlustrations really are lovely--in hearing you say you don't often enjoy graphic novels, now I wish I'd tried this one. We got it in for review, but I sent it to Kate, who will hopefully review it sometime soon. I have to read the book, too! I got 3 Gaimans last year as presents from people who were horrified I had never read him.

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

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