Monday, May 27, 2019

Review of "Someplace Strange," by Ann Nocenti and John Bolton

Review of

Someplace Strange, by Ann Nocenti and John Bolton ISBN 087135439X

Four out of five stars

 This graphic novel is one of the strangest that I have ever read. It takes the common plot device of imaginative teen boys with their fantasies and fears in many dark directions.

 The story opens with two boys in what looks like a classic mad scientist lair working on a glass-bubbled contraption that is stated to be a planet-skimming ship. The device is large enough for one of them to sit in. The jargon is typical of boys of that age, when talking about a test flight one of them says, “I’ve calculated to the zilli-fraction! The balance is perfect.” It turns out they are in a shed and the small rocket that they launch inside blows up with a lot of smoke.

 The next scene in the plot shows the two of them getting ready for bed with their parents in their bedroom. They express their fear of bad dreams and monsters, which happens. However, these bad dreams and fantasies are bizarre, even for young teen boys. They are transported to a strange world with a female artist a bit older than they are that is populated by an assortment of weird and unusual creatures and landscape features.

 The images are complex, one has to look at them thoroughly if you are to see and interpret all of the features. All the action is unpredictable and there are no warm fuzzies or even a hint of the potential for a happy ending. It is a dark story of fear, facing it and trying to cope. The author and artist also demonstrate a great deal of imagination.

No comments:

Post a Comment