Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Graphic Pick: Explorer: The Mystery Boxes
Edited by Kazu Kibuishi (creator of the Amulet series)
Color illustrations (graphic novel)
Available March 1, 2012
Beautiful art and design and fantastic and imaginative tales will make any reader a graphic novel fan. Seven stories by very different artists all have one thing tying them together: a box. What could be in that box? It is human nature to wonder and worry about what is unknown, and it's human nature to open the box--remember the myth of Pandora's box?
"Spring Cleaning" is a light hearted story of a boy who happens upon a box and gets much more than he bargained for. "The Keeper's Treasure" is one of the most beautifully rendered artistic graphic stories I've ever seen. Kazu Kibuishi's story "The Escape Option" is beautifully designed and well-thought out; it is a thought-provoking lesson in humanity and ecology.
"The Soldier's Daughter" is an effective story about the trials and brutality of war and the ones who are left behind when a soldier dies in battle.
Other stories are "Under the Floorboards," "The Butter Thief," and "Whatzit." The collection is so diverse and the art so wonderfully different, that a teacher could spend entire lessons on effective art and design and how each story varies and why the artwork is different for a light-hearted story than it is for a darker tale like "The Soldier's Daughter."
Highly, highly recommended for all graphic novel collections and grades 6-up. Younger students may not understand the lesson of The Keeper's Treasure" or "The Escape Option" although they still may enjoy the art. No language, no sex.
FTC Required Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. I did not receive monetary compensation for this review.