20 December 2008

Challenge: Graphic Novels

Laza from Gimme More Books is hosting a Graphic Novels challenge for 2009. This will truly be a challenge for me because I've never read a graphic novel! I went to the bookstore yesterday to see what was available, and I think I'll be able to do this. I came away with five books to get me started (more on that in a bit).

Visit the Graphic Novels Challenge blog to read the full rules and to see who else is joining. I am committing to the Major Level, which means I'm going to read twelve graphic novels in 2009. The challenge runs from January 1 to December 31, 2009. I'll be reviewing my books here and posting a link to the reviews on the challenge blog.

Part of the challenge for me is learning to write a decent review of a graphic novel, which should cover not just the story line but also the artwork. Another aspect to the challenge is figuring out what to read. I bought my first ever graphic novels yesterday. I picked two familiar books, two based on a review I came across, and one unknown. My blog and Twitter friends have suggested others.

Here is my list of books:*

1. Nancy Drew #1: The Demon of River Heights by Stefan Petrucha (W) and Sho Murase (A)
2. Artemis Fowl: The Graphic Novel by Eoin Colfer, Andrew Donkin (W) and Giovanni Rigano (A)
3. Bone #1: Out from Boneville by Jeff Smith (W, A)
4. Bone #2: The Great Cow Race by Jeff Smith (W, A)
5. Amulet #1: The Stonekeeper by Kazu Kibuishi (W, A)
6. Mouse Guard #1: Belly of the Beast by David Petersen (W, A)

*W = writer (author); A = artist.

I'm going back to the store today to pick up a Mouse Guard or two (love, love, love the artwork). As for the final six books: I'm planning on continuing one or more of the series I've already bought. Which books, which series will depend on what I liked.


Alea 12/20/08, 8:09 AM  

I've actually never read any of these, so your reviews will be very helpful to me! I haven't reviewed many graphic novels in the past but you are right it is a bit different. It's sometimes hard to express how you feel about the artwork! I'm always attracted to comics with beautiful illustrations, sometimes I buy them without knowing what they are about even :P

Anonymous,  12/20/08, 8:42 AM  

Good luck. I read one graphic novel this year. It was enjoyable, but I thought it was expensive.

Unknown 12/20/08, 10:22 AM  

I just read Bone all in one volume. Loved it! (I'll write the review soon, I'm so behind!) Just curious: are the Bone vols you bought in color?

I can't wait to read your reviews. You always write great reviews, and I'm sure these will be no different. :) Graphic novels can be expensive, especially if they are in color. I've found that my library has some, but sometimes they don't have them all.

Good luck!

Beth F 12/20/08, 10:35 AM  

Alea: Thanks for all your encouragement. I truly appreciate it.

Bermuda: I'll need the luck! The books I bought were all under $10. I'll pass them on to my nephews and niece, so I'm not concerned about the cost.

Laza: I saw the one-vol. book. It was way too thick for comfortable reading, and I wasn't sure I'd like it. So I got the smaller books. And yes, in full color. The drawings look great.

Darlene 12/20/08, 10:43 AM  

I finally read a few of my first graphic novels this year. They still aren't my favorite but I didn't mind them. I'll be watching for reviews to see what you think.

Anonymous,  12/20/08, 2:05 PM  

I can't wait to read your reviews! My husband is a comic book expert and has always tried to get me into graphic novels! Good luck on this challenge, it should be fun!!

Have you considered The Watchmen? It has a movie coming out in the spring. Anyway, it's kinda considered the Graphic Novel of all Graphic Novels. It's also featured on top 1000 book lists (like 1000 books you must read in your life).

Anyway, I've been meaning to read it but never have. It's supposed to be very cool.

Anonymous,  12/20/08, 2:05 PM  

I am not doing this one :)

Beth F 12/20/08, 3:25 PM  

Dar: I'm looking forward to trying something new.

Smash: thanks for the suggestion. I may indeed add it. I have to see how I do with what I have.

Veens: I've held off on some good challenges too. Just can't join everything!

Anonymous,  12/20/08, 4:13 PM  

I really thought I was going to have trouble finding books. I went to the library today. Nope, there will be NO trouble...lol! In fact, I think I might enjoy this challenge greatly!

Michele 12/20/08, 7:21 PM  

I've never read one either, Beth. I'd love to, just to see what all the hoopla's about, but as previously mentioned they are soooo expensive!

And I haven't found the graphic novel section at Half Price Books yet.

Alea 12/20/08, 7:24 PM  

I've found some great Graphic Novels at my Half Price Books! Our section is so small, in one of the stores they are tucked underneath something, on the floor- very hard to find!

Beth F 12/22/08, 6:16 PM  

J Kaye: I know ... there is an amazing range of graphic novels.\

Michele and Alea: I'm just not thinking about the expense. By the time I read them, my nephews and their parents read them, and my niece and her dad read them, the cost per read becomes really reasonable!

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