As some of you may know, I participated in an impromptu, personal read-a-thon two weeks ago where I was trying to read one graphic novel a day for an entire week. Things happened, books were read, but alas, it didn’t go exactly as planned.
Monday June 22nd
Off to a good start! This was the inspiration behind the entire read-a-thon actually. I read almost this entire thing at work, and finished it up at home with no problems.
I rated it pretty high (as I do all of Victoria Jamieson’s other books). It was heartbreaking, eye opening and sad, but always with an undertone of optimism. I loved learning about what happens to Omar afterwards in the Author’s Note in the back. It’s a must read for sure, but touches some really heavy topics, so be prepared to discuss them with children if you are in fact sharing it with them.
Tuesday June 23rd
Alright, not bad, but I can already see the system beginning to break down. I read just about all of this one on Tuesday, but had to finish up Wednesday.
This one broke my heart completely unexpectedly. I mean, I don’t know WHAT I was expecting exactly? It says right on the cover, “a dead mom graphic memoir” so I knew what it was about going into it, and yet…
I rated this really high. It was heartbreaking but oddly really appropriately funny? I liked that the author wasn’t trying to force jokes for the sake of being I don’t know, interesting? She had some really well placed, and tasteful jokes that only added to the story being told, rather than make a joke out of the whole situation. It was really well done, and extremely honest about the grieving process. Most people are of the mind that you get to be sad for a little while, and then you get over it. But the author here talks about how grief lasts a lifetime, and that it is something you carry around with you.
Wednesday June 24th
Alright, we are in another situation where I started a book on it’s day, but couldn’t quite finish it in time. After finishing DatPP, I moved quickly on to The Lost Carnival, which is a Dick Grayson story (Robin from Batman).
I was pleasantly surprised/happy with the fact that Batman had 0 mentions in this story (aside from a backhanded, very little nod by a fortune teller in passing). What threw me off was the presence of real magic in what is supposed to be the same world as Batman though. It didn’t feel authentic. I think if it were just a story about a typical carnival acrobat, it would have been more enjoyable but I just couldn’t sit with the supernatural elements knowing its the same world Batman lives in. That was it’s only flaw really. I liked the use of color pallet, and how the artist changed the colors of the panels depending which carnival they were at.
Thursday June 25th
Now this is where it starts to get hairy. I finished Lost Carnival on Thursday and picked up Girl who Married a Skull. I didn’t get much further than that though.
At some point I was just carrying a stack of unread graphic novels back and forth from home in hopes that I would read one of them. Eventually, I left the stack at my apartment and made the pact that I would finish the stack over the weekend.
Saturday July 4th
Ok, yes. It was an epic fail. I can give you that much. But once I finished reading Look Both Ways (Jason Reynolds- which I ALSO had on my desk for WEEKS without finishing) I made it a priority to FINALLY finish my stack of graphic novels. And I made good on that plan (sort of).
I read this one in one sitting, and woof. It hit hard. I actually screen shot a couple of panels because they felt like they could be cut and pasted into the United States today. Those who don’t study and remember history are doomed to repeat it, or something like that…
I really love historical graphic novels because it makes little pockets of history easily accessible and consumable to more people. I don’t think I ever knew about South Korea’s Fifth Republic, but now I do!
Sunday July 5th
This was a true “one sitting” read. It was dark and kind of creepy, like classic fairy tales tend to be. Though I have never heard of this one, it has the makings of being a personal favorite. The illustrations were gorgeous, and makes me want to pick up this duo’s version of The Little Mermaid. I really liked it, though I would read it yourself before giving it to a child (especially if they are younger and scare easily).
At the end of the day, I just didn’t want to pick up Nat Enough. Once you’ve read this “Telgeimeier-esque” style, you’ve basically read them all and I just wasn’t in the mood for “basic” especially after reading some really great, unique stories.
As for Girl who Married a Skull; I read a little bit of it. A couple pages really. It was pretty dark for a children’s tale but I suppose around the same as Bluebeard. It was black and white illustrations which didn’t bother me about Banned Book Club, but for some reason really didn’t bode well for this one. It’s something I want to re-visit eventually. Maybe I was just burnt out by graphic novels by the time I go to this one, but either way, it wasn’t the right time for me.
And there you have it. My one week Read-a-thon turned two weeks, plus 2 DNFs but lots of unique and borderline creepy stories that I definitely loved. It was a nice little boost to my reading goals too which is always helpful.
What do you think about these titles? Do you want to add any to your TBR? Have you read any of them yourself? Let’s chat about it :]