In which Miss Molly now gets excited for squeaky floor boards.

The Lost Boy
Greg Ruth

lost boy
Summary:

Nate has just arrived in a new town, at a new house, and is none too pleased.

Sure, he gets to pick out his own room, but who cares. That is until Nate walks into his chosen bedroom and steps on a creaky floor board. After some careful prying, he pulls the board loose, and discover a note addressed to him, along with a tape recorder, and a series of tapes. These discoveries throw Nate deep into a dark mystery. With the help of a local girl, Tabitha, and an odd assortment of creatures, Nate must uncover the mystery of the lost boy, keep the dark forces at bay, and protect the magical borders between his world and “The Kingdom”.

This book is full of creepy creatures, scary villains–both internal and external–surreal elements, bug armies, magic, friendship and tests of character. Told in parallel story arcs, this fast paced graphic novel holds a little something for everyone.

What I liked:

The art work. It was gorgeous. Absolutely wonderful. The range and depth of the illustrations and the story that is told simply though the art is exceptional. The black, white, and shades of gray were a fantastic backdrop for this creepy tale. The images reflected the bleak darkness of the tale in a way that only graphic novels can. Truly exceptional. The art in this novel exemplifies one of the reasons why I adore graphic novels: It makes you think. It’s so real that you find yourself looking at every stray dog to see if there’s an insect in a top hat on its back.

It was nice to see an empathetic boy, who is strong enough to admit that he is sad or uncomfortable, while not getting lost in self pity. Nate cared about other people, both real and magical. His act of empathy toward the end was remarkable. As for Tabitha, she was smart and funny in her own right. What was refreshing was that there was no romantic involvement between the two. There didn’t need to be. They were a good balance for one another.

What I didn’t like:
To me, the story was rushed and seemed to take for granted what the reader should already know about the world.  However, as this is what I presume to be the first book in the series, I am not sure how accurate this assumption on the author’s part can be. This graphic novel would be perfect if back matter was explained a little more, if there was more world building, if there was just a tad more character development…basically, it needed to be longer.

I do admit, I was terribly excited to read this book, so maybe I missed something because I devoured it so fast. It absolutely bears a second reading.

All-in-all, I would recommend this book for anyone in 5th grade and above.

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