Posts Tagged ‘Graphic Novel’

The Walking Dead Compendium 2

Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard

Returning with the second eight volumes of the fan-favorite, New York Times bestseller series, The Walking Dead, collected into one massive paperback collection!
This is the perfect collection for any fan of the Emmy Award-winning television series on AMC: over one-thousand pages chronicling the next chapter of Robert Kirkman’s Eisner Award-winning continuing story of survival horror – beginning with Rick Grimes’ struggle to survive after the prison raid, to the group’s finding short solace in The Community, and the devastation that follows. In a world ruled by the dead, we are finally forced to finally start living. Collects The Walking Dead #49-96.

Now, that the televised ‘Walking Dead’ series 3 is kicking about, I’m going to try and make sure this review is as spoiler free as possible. There are some in here but I hope that they are obvious and expected developments.

I can’t tell you how eagerly I have been waiting for the second compendium to come out, especially considering the incredibly huge, jaw dropping ‘I didn’t see that coming’ finale that the first compendium ended with. The initial compendium was actually my first foray into comics….sorry, slaps hand, graphic novels. As a fan of the TV series and knowing that Robert Kirkman helped create the graphic novels and series I thought I’d give it a try. The story lines are similar and still based on how the characters have had to adjust to the zombie apocalypse. They now behave with a different set of moral codes which will at times be in conflict with the group as a whole and how that is dealt with.

What makes the novels so brilliant is the level of detail with the illustrations. You literally see what the characters see, if a scene unfolds without speech or watching a character go through a slew of emotions. Time is taken to painstakingly draw scene after scene to make you explore every detail to understand what is going on. It’s quite cruel really as the speed of the story is fast, making you eager to find out what’s happened but you can’t just skim over the pictures as they convey more of the story than the actual dialogue!

If like me, you’ve finished watching season 2 and only seen the trailer for series 3, you’ll know that a prison seems to be the answer to our survivors’ dreams whilst some of the disbanded survivors find themselves in a maintained community with a governor that would make even the zombies shudder. Well, the conclusion to that particular chapter finishes at the end of compendium 1.
Compendium 2 starts straight away following this dramatic finale. The survivors are all scattered but gradually regroup. They’re all emotionally beaten as they have seriously just taken such a kicking. Rick in particular has to fight his demons and has lost confidence in his ability to lead the group, a thought which is also shared by others in the group. As we follow the survivors try to once again find sanctuary however short-lived, the pace feels a little slower but understandably so. The survivors are licking their wounds after all and there is a fear that being too relentless could lead to predictability which the novel avoids. I also wonder if you, the reader can become desensitised to the zombie attacks, something of which, even the characters acknowledge as zombies and the manner of killing them, once and for all becomes part of daily routine.

Verdict: This compendium ends on not quite such a dramatic cliffhanger as it’s predecessor, but you just know that, ‘a storm’s a coming’. Now I know that I could buy the following novels separately, but that will ruin the harmony of my collection so far, so I will just have to sit on my hands and hope that Compendium 3 doesn’t take too long to come out!

Reviewed by Karen

Publisher: Image Comics
Publication Date: October 2012
Format: Paperback
Pages: 1068
Genre: Graphic Novel, Zombie
Age: Adult
Reviewer: Karen
Source: Own Copy
Challenge: None
Posted on:

Carnegie and Greenaway Awards: Slog’s Dad

Author: David Almond and Dave McKean (illustrator)

Do you believe there’s life after death? Slog does. He reckons that the scruffy bloke sitting outside the pork shop is his dad come back to visit him for one last time- just like he’d said he would, just before he died. Slog’s mate Davie isn’t convinced. But how does this man know everything Slog’s dad would know? Because Slog says it really is his dad, that’s how.

I have mixed feelings about this book. Visually it is superb, the style very similar to ‘The Savage’, another Almond and McKean collaboration and I book that I adored. I love that some pictures look almost photographic until you look at the faces. I love the mainly green undertones that make the other colours stand out all the more. For once I also like that the pictures stand alone, with the story they tell told in an almost storyboard fashion. It is through these pictures that you see Slog’s pain at the death of his Dad, his hopes and dreams that one day he will return. This is made all the more poignant by the fact that the actual story is told by Davie, Slog’s best friend. The story told in words, is slightly more detached, it’s the pictures that give you an emotional context to the book.

It’s the story I have mixed feelings about. I think I understand the intention, but I found certain element quite creepy. This man looks nothing like Slog’s Dad and parts of Davie’s story seem to imply he is just indeed a random man. I think that the intention is just to show how someone can do something nice for a grieving small boy. That they can give them the comfort of knowing that there is something better out there. But I found the notion that someone could pretend in that way quite disturbing. This is a book set around 50 years ago however so maybe I placing my own more modern conception of mistrust unfairly in this case.

This shouldn’t take away from the fact that this is a very moving story that speaks very eloquently of love and loss.

Reviewed by Alison

Publisher: Walker
Publication Date: September 2010
Format: Hardback
Pages: 64
Genre: Graphic Novel, Death
Age: Middle Grade
Reviewer: Alison
Source: Borrowed
Challenge: British Book
Posted on: