Tag Archives: graphic novel

The Legend of Wonder Woman (2015 – ) Vol.1: Origins by Renae DeLiz and Ray Dillon~ Graphic Novel Review

Pages:  288

Published: December 16, 2016

Format:  Hardcover book

 

 

 

 

If I had ever known the origin story for Wonder Woman as a child, I had completely forgotten it in adulthood.  It is a marvelous story and one that is well told in this beautiful rendering by Renae DeLiz and Ray Dillon.  I love that Diana (Wonder Woman) is the daughter of the immortal god, Hippolyta, Queen of the Amazons, given life out of clay by Gaea.  She is born on Themyscira, a planet for the immortals, where her mother hopes she can live an immortal peaceful life.  However, Diana senses she has another purpose in life and begins warrior training in secret with Alcippe.  A mortal, a fighter pilot named Steve Trevor, lands on Themyscira as part of a plot by Ares to overthrow Hippolyta.  His plan is foiled when Diana wins the tournament and is named champion.  Diana accompanies Steve Trevor by boat to the boundary between Themyscira and Earth, but ends up being pushed out of Themyscira to Earth herself by Poseiden.

On Earth, Diana is befriended by singer, Etta Candy, who takes Diana under her wing acclimating her to life on Earth.   Etta follows Diana to France to aid in the war effort during WW2, where Etta will sing and Diana will work as a nurse.  Diana goes there in pursuit of an evildoer that is raising the dead Axis forces that are told to destroy the remaining Allied forces.  The man in command of the destruction wears the baetylus, which Diana immediately recognizes as a sacred item of her mother’s.

Diana becomes a WW2 heroine as both a civilian and Wonder Woman.  She is a fighter for truth, more often than not, impairing her enemies by showing them the truth with her lasso than actual physical harm.  She is willing to give up a normal life to protect life on Earth.  This is a coming of age story for the young Diana Prince, who must discover who she is, where she came from, and what her purpose must be.

This is not my usual genre, so I thank Book Riot Read Harder 2017 Challenge for pushing me outside of my usual comfort zone.  This was a stunning book, one I had a hard time putting down.  I have renewed respect and love for the heroine, Wonder Woman, and am so glad I was able to get to know her better through this graphic novel.  I highly recommend this everyone!  The combination of Greek God background and WW2 hero made this entirely compelling.

The movie Wonder Woman was released in the United States on June 2, 2017.  Did you see it?  I have not yet seen the movie, but I plan to watch it and write a follow-up post in reaction to it.  An interesting fun fact is that, in October 2016, the United Nations named Wonder Woman a “UN Honorary Ambassador for the Empowerment of Women and Girls.”  Two months later she was dropped from her role, following a petition.

 

 

 

Owly Vol.1: The Way Home and The Bittersweet Summer by Andy Runton ~ Book Review

Pages:  160

Published: September 29, 2004

Format:  Softcover book

 

 

 

 

I chose to read this book because of it’s description as an “all ages comic book,” in order to help complete this year’s Book Riot Read Harder Challenge.  I was surprised when it arrived to see exactly how few words this book contained.  The animals make noises and occasionally there are words shown from a book one of the animals is reading, but that’s about it.    Conversations are conveyed through bubbles containing pictures.  Emotions are expressed by way of pictures. I found it pretty incredible that so much could be conveyed without words and with some fairly simplistic depictions.

This book is composed of two novellas, each in comic book style.  In the first, Owly, the charming main character, is out to help others and make friends.  He puts birdseed out for the birds.  He frees captured fireflies.  He rescues Wormy from nearly drowning in a puddle during a rainstorm and stays up all night making sure he is ok.  The next day he helps Wormy find his parents.  In the second novella, Owly and Wormy go out of their way to research and find the right food for two hungry hummingbirds.  Owly also must learn to let go in this story, as the hummingbirds must migrate south for the summer.   Owly’s good deeds do not go unnoticed and those he has helped become his loyal friends, destined to return even if flying far away.

These are truly heartwarming, enchanting tales of friendship and kindness.  I read this with my 4 year old daughter who summed the book up in one word, “awesome.”  I look forward to reading more of Owly in the future. 

Andy Runton’s website – contains teaching tools, coloring sheets, animation shorts and much more!

TTT: Favorite Graphic Novels (An 8 year old Boy’s Perspective)

I had so much fun creating my list of top 10 favorite picture books for The Broke and the Bookish meme, that I thought I’d let my son play too.  He’s 8 years old and loves graphic novels.  He’s read tons of them and these are his favorites.  Again, these are in no particular order.  What are your favorite graphic novels for this age group?  He is always on the hunt for great books and would love your recommendations!

1.  Bone Series by Jeff Smith – a series of 10 books.  Tales of humor, mystery and adventure when 3 cousins get separated.  They attempt to find each other encountering many creatures in the process.

 

 

 

2.  Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney – My son devoured all 11 books in this series.  He was so excited to watch a movie and then so disappointed.  “Mom, this is not nearly as good as the book.”  It was a fun proud mom moment to have him make this realization.  He never asked to watch another Diary of a Wimpy Kid movie again.

 

 

  3.   Big Nate Series by Lincoln Peirce – This is an 8 book series of books that my son absolutely loved.  There are other Big Nate books out there as well, aside from the series as well as comic strip compilations.  These are books that my son goes back to and re-reads when he’s out of other reading material.  I hear him laughing out loud and he loves relaying snippets from these books to us.

 4.  The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman – Having read and loved the non-graphic version of this book, I was excited to see how my son would react to this.  At first, he was definitely taken aback by the violence with which the book starts, but he quickly got into it, and now rates it in his top ten.

 

 

 

5.  13 Story Treehouse Series by Andy Griffiths – My son has read the first 5 books in this series.  It looks like the 6th is available in text in Australia, but not yet here in the US.  My son describes this series as having both an excellent storyline and great humor.

 

 

 

6.  Meanwhile by Jason Shiga – This is a choose-your-own-adventure graphic novel, fun to read over and over with different outcomes.

 

 

 

 

7.  Star Wars Jedi Academy Series by Jeffrey Brown – This is a 3 book series that my son tore through quickly engrossing him far more than any other star wars books have.

 

 

 

8.  The Adventures of Super Diaper Baby Series by Dav Pilkey, George Beard, and Harold Hutchins – This 2 book series is for kids who love silly humor.  The thing that bothers me about this series is all the misspelled words, because it is supposed to be written by two young kids themselves.  However, this doesn’t seem to bother my son.

 

9.  Amulet (Series) by Kazu Kibuishi – A 7 book series in a terrifying world of man-eating demons, a mechanical rabbit, a giant robot and two children.

 

 

 

 

 10. Lucy and Andy Neanderthal  by Jeffrey Brown – A stand alone graphic novel by the author of the Star Wars Jedi Academy series.