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Book Review: The Giver, Graphic Novel by Lois Lowry and P. Craig Russell (Illustrations)

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The Giver, The graphic Novel will be available for purchase on February 5, 2019.

Disclaimer: This book was sent to me by the publisher, via Edelweiss+, for an honest review.

Genre: Teen/YA/Fiction/Graphic Novel/Comic

Plot: Placed on countless reading lists, translated into more than forty languages, and made into a feature film, The Giver is the first book in The Giver Quartet that also includes Gathering Blue, Messenger, and Son.

In this new graphic novel edition, readers experience the haunting story of twelve-year-old Jonas and his seemingly ideal, if colorless, world of conformity and contentment, through the brilliant art of P. Craig Russell that truly brings The Giver to life.

Witness Jonas’s assignment as the Receiver of Memory, watch as he begins to understand the dark secrets behind his fragile community, and follow the explosion of color into his world like never before.

Opinion:

I can picture it so clearly as if it were yesterday.

I was sitting in class, a wee youngster at the time.

A black book with an old man on the cover was dropped on my rickety desk; assigned reading for the semester. Audible groans and grumblings of “this looks boring” and “dude, come on. Something from this century, PLEASE” were heard throughout the room.

The story of a young boy was given to us with a cover so wise beyond our years, with words so eloquently written, that it almost felt too much for our wandering minds to grasp. A book we appreciated and grew to love, but one that still left a dryness across our eyes.

If ONLY we had been given this beautiful version.

You all know the story of young Jonas and his path to becoming the Receiver of Memory. Living in a place where color does not exist, and the memory of it is not taught. But when he is given his Life Assignment, he is given a job unlike his friends. He is to be the Receiver of Memory, the one who holds all the memories of the world, including those with color. So ensues Jonas’s journey to learning about the world, one filled with happiness and pain, sadness and elation. This version of The Giver pulls in readers of all ages and gives them beautifully illustrated images of Jonas’ story.

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This graphic novel is AMAZING.

I honestly didn’t know how much I needed a graphic novel version of The Giver, until now. These illustrations are BEAUTIFUL and perfectly portray this story. Not only is it a great version for all us who had read this in school or when we were kids, but it is a FANTASTIC way to get the younger audiences and newer generations interested! I feel SO lucky that we were given a movie, and now this! The story is the same, but naturally, not every word from the original was transcribed to this rendition. This form of The Giver is much more direct with its delivery of the story, thanks to the illustrations being able to shorten the originals descriptions of scenery.

Instead of the reader having to imagine Jonas learning about colors and the world, they get to SEE it happening as they read. It’s a movie and a book in one! I think all ages can enjoy this adaptation of the classic novel by Lois Lowry, but I feel that it might end up targeting a younger audience overall. Due to the writing being shortened to accommodate the illustrations, it seems that some of the more dark and somber moments from this book are reduced. The reader can see the emotion from the illustrations, but it definitely doesn’t have that gut-wrenching effect that the original has.

Some things from the original were shortened, like Jonas’s big escape with the baby and some of the moments with the current Receiver of Memory. I also found it interesting that the illustrations only portrayed moments of full color for Jonas when he was receiving a memory, or when he had left. I would have expected him to have full color before then, but really, I suppose it doesn’t matter!

In comparison to the original form of The Giver, I found this graphic novel to be breathtaking and VERY enjoyable. As a long-time lover of this book, I was hit with a rush of nostalgia and happiness while reading. This version is truly a masterpiece and will be a great interpretation for younger audiences. I cannot WAIT to get this in a print version!

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5-stars

 

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Books · New Releases · Reviews

THE STOLEN CHILD by Peter Brunton

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Disclaimer: I was sent a copy of this book by the author, Peter Brunton, for an honest review

Genre: Young Adult/Fiction/Fantasy/Utopian/Steampunk/Adventure

Plot:

There are roads that are not on any map.

There are worlds beyond our own, where cities hang between the clouds and Guildships sail on steam and lightning.

There is a girl living on the streets of London, hunted by ruthless mercenaries and a boy made of shadows and smoke.

There is a place beyond the furthest edge of the Dreaming, where the Lady of The Falling Leaves is calling her home.

And there is a secret, buried in the heart of Rachael’s city, that will transform our world forever.

The Stolen Child is a breathtaking young adult adventure that takes the reader from industrial chaos of modern London to the vast and impossible world of the Borderlands, a world of flying ships, floating cities, magical automata, and ancient wonders. Drawn together from across distant worlds by events that were set in motion before either of them was born, two young women discover a strange connection, and a friendship that will change everything.

Opinion:

……Woah.

If I may be so bold to say…move over The Mortal Instruments, because I think The Stolen Child might have just blown you out of the YA/Fantasy realm and thrown you into the “too much romance, not enough badass” section of the bookshelf. This book has literally robbed me of my acceptance of living in this ordinary world we call reality, and thinking that it was enough for me to escape into made up stories once and awhile. Have you guys ever read a book and thought “well shit, that’s the end for me”, because now you know you are never going to be able to find another book that even SLIGHTLY compares to the majestic wonder that you have just finished? The Stolen Child, is that book and that series.

“There are roads that are not on any map.  Pathways between worlds that anyone could walk if they only knew the way.  A turning in the middle of a field.  A crack between two stones that didn’t seem to be there a moment before.  A course plotted by stars that can only be seen when the moon is right.”

http://exilesthestolenchild.com/about-the-book/

Rachael has been dealing with strange vivid dreams and hallucinations all her life. Not only did this cause turmoil for her parents who thought her to be insane, it led her to be homeless and on her own in the street of London. One day Rachael starts to notice that she is being watched, and soon she is being chased by men who seem to only want to bring her harm. Luckily she is rescued by a mysterious boy named Justin, who claims to protect her and keep her safe. But Rachael doesn’t know what she needs to be kept safe from and why she is being followed, until Justin tells her that he was sent by Rachael’s birth mother to bring her home to a world that she can only believe to be made up.

Arsha has lived in the Borderlands all her life. For her, traveling to multiple worlds with her father in a flying ship called The Triskelion is normal. As the daughter of an explorer and archaeologist, Arsha has become accustomed to adventure and new places. But one day Arsha’s father tells his crew that they must leave immediately for a mission that is of the up-most importance, but remains highly secretive about the reasoning. Unable to contain her curiosity, Arsha steals her father’s sending stone (an advanced version of communication, or phone) so that she might be able to find a clue to where they are headed. In the sending stone, Arsha watches a correspondence between her father and a woman from the Chamber of Foresight who explains a vision she has seen about a girl in London. In her vision, she sees a girl named Rachael and Arsha standing together with their hands intertwined and a “seed” is opened in London which could cause horrendous destruction. Soon, Arsha and Rachael’s life start to combine as the two girls try to figure out who they can and cannot trust, and what the connection they share really is.

I know I know. Those are two LONG paragraphs for a description on this book, but trust me, I haven’t even covered more than a few pages there. This book is something so incredibly SPECIAL, I cannot even contain my excitement and already growing obsession! This book literally has EVERYTHING I LOVE IN A BOOK! The author has a fantastic and expressive writing style that makes the reader think they are watching a movie in their head. After just the first chapter, I was already thinking to myself that this book was written so descriptively that it could be a screenplay for a movie…and MY OH MY would this be one kick-ass movie. Peter Brunton has done a perfect job of creating a world that every reader can lose themselves in, and he has done an even more amazing job of describing and executing it in a flawless manner. Not only has he created TWO strong lead female characters, but he gives their characters natural flaws that make them seem more human and realistic. The characters of Rachael and Arsha are literally yin and yang, darkness and light, sugar and spice. The connection that these two share is fascinating, and their story proves to be highly entertaining and intense.

As I am sure you can guess, this is a VERY difficult book to describe without giving the entire story away. I would love to give a little bit more insight to what this is about, but I think this review could give you enough information to jump-start your interest. This story is full of adventure and twists in modern day themes with a fantastical steampunk spin. This is in the YA genre, but don’t let that lead you into thinking that this book is overpowered with romance…because it isn’t! I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone that likes fantasy and adventure books, or anyone that wants to appreciate great writing and storytelling.

5 Stars

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