Graphic Novel Reviews | the first five

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Does anyone remember when I did that list all the way back in January…. you know the TBR full of graphic novels. Guess what?? I read some. 🎉🎉

I never knew this day would come. I actually read some books from a planned TBR… absolute madness. I thought this was just a myth.

Moving on from my own astonishment, let’s talk about what I thought of these novels. Including if I would recommend any to you desiring readers. At least I am presuming you are currently desiring books to read. I mean, let’s be real, who isn’t?

Now on with the first five mini-reviews…

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Heartstopper by Alice Oseman

ayyy… look who it is? I feel confident in saying this is one of the most popular YA graphic novels. With all that weighty expectation, it had a lot to live up to. But, thankfully, it basically knocked it out of the park. Yes, it was a bit cliché and very cutesy which isn’t my usual thing but, I still enjoyed it. I felt like it had a lot to offer readers.

The emotionally healthy discussions were really stand out for me. Many of the comments were ‘yes, thank you’ moments. The comic really emphasised bettering how you feel and looking after each other in healthy ways. I loved that soOOo much.

Plus, the art, expressions (the eyes!!), and the humour all added to it. A great graphic novel to read.

Would I recommend it? If you don’t know my answer by now, I haven’t written my thoughts correctly. YESSSS.

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low: a delirium of hope volume one by Rick Remender and Greg Tocchini

The story of what happens after the sun explodes (please tell me we have all wondered what would happen !!). An aquatic adventure with a strong feel of sci-fi and tragedy… like a lot of tragedy. That is what I would tell you to expect from this story.

This story did have its merits. Following an optimistic character against such a devastating premise was actually really inspiring. It was a great creative choice. I also enjoyed that the plot was essentially an adventure. It was compelling to read and see. Some of the panels were visually amazing, particularly the scenes in the water.

However, I wouldn’t say I enjoyed the graphic novel. Despite the optimism, I didn’t particularly care for the characters. The plot never delved into anything unique even though I felt it has the potential to, and some scenes just made me feel a little uncomfortable.

Would I recommend it? nope.

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something is killing the children volume one by James Tynion IV, Werther Dell’Edera & Miquel Muerto

A potential by-product of a stranger things era. Monsters come haunting, kids go missing, and someone comes to save the day.

This was a solid graphic novel, and it was just the beginning. Once I had finished volume one, I was ready for more which is a good sign. The plot was compelling and I liked the characters. I do wish I got a little more from the story at times to give it that extra punch. Hopefully, the other volumes will deliver on that for me.

As this is a horror-based comic, I felt like the atmosphere was done well. There was mystery, suspense and I loved the way the art style matched it. It was dark like you would expect but paired with bright colours when suitable. I loved the contrast. I thought it was a great and distinct creative decision that helps this novel to stand out.

Being horror, it was slightly out of my comfort zone, but it was good. At the minute, just a solid read, not exceptional, but I’m intrigued to see where it goes.

Would I recommend it? I would if it initially appeals to you.

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midnight radio by Iolanda Zanfardino

Sadly one of the more disappointing graphic novels I read. I was so excited for this one, and when flicking through the art, I loved it a lot. The bold colour palettes. How each perspective was assigned a different colour. The brush/sketch style. It was all so BEAUTIFUL and unique. I still love the art, but the story itself was lacking structure hence the disappointment.

The graphic novel follows four perspectives on separate journeys. Fitting four stories into this novel left too little time to explore each one. I couldn’t get invested, and they even felt a little squashed in together. It was also disappointing that the whole radio thing, you know the namesake, didn’t play much of a part in the story. Overall, it felt a little unsatisfactory to read, and I was really bummed about it. I admired what the novel was trying to do, and I hope it worked better with other readers.

Would I recommend it? I’m sorry, but it is going to have to be a no.

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heathen volume one by Natasha Alterici & Rachel Deering

I loved the premise and the execution absolutely held up to it. This comic definitely deserves more love, please. Allow me to explain… it starts with a woman rescuing a cursed goddess to prove she is brave and defy those in power. Plus… our female saviour is Sapphic and perfect. Are you convinced you need to love it yet???

It is full of adventure, heroines, gods, Norse mythology and magic. I loved the pacing, themes, how much speech there was and the character interactions. I am very eager to see where this comic goes…. obviously.

I liked the art, whilst not one of my favourites, it had lots of good features. It had a dark palette, with limited colour, but still good at shading and adding dimension. I loved the expression and realism in this sketchy style as well. Plus, I loved, LOVED, loved how our main heroine looked. She wasn’t your typically beautiful heroine model but looked real and her actual age. I reeaaally liked that.

Would I recommend it? yesssss, I loved this one.

divider. In centre is a red and pink mushroom/toadstool, on the left and right are pink swirls.
notes on reading graphic novels so far…
  1. The bigger they are, the more I enjoy them. You can learn more about the characters and plot, so it is a much more fulfilling experience as a reader.
  2. I really enjoy it when the art has a distinct style, so it really stands out.
  3. Graphic novels are expensive !!
divider. In centre is a red and pink mushroom/toadstool, on the left and right are pink swirls.

here’s to the next 5 graphic novels… 🥂

Have you read any of these graphic novels? What did you think to them?

Have you got any recommendations for graphic novels?

21 thoughts on “Graphic Novel Reviews | the first five

  1. Loved your notes on reading graphic novels so far! I agree on all points, because there isn’t as much plain text to convey information, longer formats work better for me as well. I do appreciate a distinct art style, but I’m very picky in what I like and don’t like. I’m very focused on aesthetics sometimes. And lastly, HECK YEAH THEY ARE EXPENSIVE!! I still haven’t completed some series, just because of money reasons (e.g. The Wicked + the Divine)
    However, if you want to read free web comics, I can really recommend Lore Olympus and Heart of Gold.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yay, thank you and I’m glad you could agree. Yeah with the longer graphic novels you can get into the story. With some of the shorter ones, just when you are getting started, it ends, haha! Ohh interesting that you are picky with art style, aesthetics can be absolutely stunning and 100% draw you to a story though. I definitely like distinct ones to stand out too.
      Yessss, sooo much money!! I get that the different people involved and the printing of so much detail makes it add up but it is a lot especially if you are doing it on a regular basis. The wicked + the divine is a big series, I hope you get to finish it one day though. I definitely do want to check out some free web comics, thank you for the recommendations. I will add them to my list. Thank you for stopping by. 💕

      Liked by 1 person

  2. ahh yess, i’ve only read heartstopper on this list, but i loved it so so much, it was literally the cutest thing, but it also talked about really tough topics, and i loved that! honestly, heartstopper gives me so much serotonin 🥺 love this post, and i can’t wait to check out the other ones you loved from this list! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ahh.. I’m so glad you loved heartstopper. It truly is a good graphic novel!! Like you say so adorable but really does explore deep topics… and so well. AH-MAZING!! Thank you, I hope you enjoy any you decide to check out !! 💕

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much Caro 💕 Heartstopper is really good, it definitely lived up to the hype !! I loved the humour in it too, it was subtle but hit the mark every time !!! Yes, Something is Killing the Children would be a great October read. Hope you end up enjoying it !! 💕

      Liked by 1 person

  3. *groan* when will I finally read Heartstopper? 😕
    Oh yeah, graphic novels are very expensive (not to mention the amount of time it takes to make one), and then you go and finish them in like half and hour-
    (these all sound so good, though! I’ll add them to my tbr ((: )

    Liked by 1 person

    1. haha that was me before I actually read Heartstopper, it was always on my TBR 🤣 hope you love it when you get around to it though. Graphic novels can be expensive, but like you say a lot of work and time go into it. Plus, the printing process must be pretty intense. You do finish them so quickly, you have to savour the moments 🤣 Yay, hope you enjoy them!! Happy reading !! 😊


      1. I actually read the first one or two chapters online, just to see if I’d like the feel.. and that just made my longing to read it worse. I think I’ll be getting it soon though (finally 😒)!
        Mhmm, yeah. 😬

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve only read four graphic novels and that’s the first three volumes of Heartstopper & the mini comics! It was definitely a great one to start with and I loved it so much!! I was really surprised by how much you could connect with the characters and I’m so looking forward to picking up the 4th instalment in the series.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aw.. After checking these out I definitely think Heartstopper is a great place to start. One of the best and all the cuteness too. I’m glad you loved it and could connect to the characters. I thought the art did a really good job of making them all very endearing and lovable for sure. Hope you love the 4th one. I need to read that one too 💖💖

      Liked by 1 person

  5. i really need to get into graphic novels! so far, i’ve only read heartstopper and likewise, i love how healthy the communication in that series is. it makes me so happy to see that, especially because how often we see miscommunication as a trope in YA fiction. alice oseman is doing *the most*!

    low really has an interesting premise. i remember that in high school, we had a group project to come up with a movie poster and we made a movie plot that was also about the aftermath of the explosion of the sun hahah. it’s a shame it didn’t live up to its potential!

    i think it’s interesting how the art style for something is killing the children is almost reminiscing of children’s books. what a good contrast, especially considering the actual *content* of the story.

    i don’t pick up graphic novels too often, but i am reading the fence series and it’s definitely a lot of fun! it’s one of those that i think i’ll appreciate best once it’s completed, but the installments are short and entertaining enough.

    great post, sophie! always so happy to hear from you! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have been meaning to get into graphic novels for a while so I hope I am able to continue checking more out. Same for you if you want to get into them. They are quick, fun reads a lot of the time.

      Heartstopper honestly is really good. I didn’t think it would live up to my expectations tbh but it did. It is rare to see healthy communications. The way that I really noticed it in this book really showed me that we don’t see it enough in books. I hope the TV show does it justice. Alice Oseman is great. I wonder if they will do another graphic novel series once heartstopper is over *cough cough* ALED!!

      ahh.. that movie poster/movie sounds amazing. I really am quite fascinated by the concept of ‘the-sun-is-going-to-explode’. It is shame about low though, maybe the sequels are better but I don’t think I will be finding out.

      That’s true actually Something is Killing The Children does have that children’s book style but the content is definitely adult. I do think it works quite well ironically.

      I have checked the first issue of fence out and like you say it was short so I can see how it is best all together in some ways. I’m glad you enjoy it though and I will definitely have to check out more of it now.

      Thank you so much Lais and thank you for stopping by 💛💛


  6. I’ve been meaning to read Heartstopper for a while now and kept putting it off but that little sliver of a peek you gave convinced me to go out and buy all the books 😂 ah, those midnight impulse buys but I know I’m definitely not gonna regret this one, lol! Will defo have to check out the other one you recommended!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha I am so glad I could convince you to buy the books 😂 I do love impulse buys they can be so exciting!! I really hope you love the heartstopper comics– they are really well done and fun! Plus, you can read it before the TV show release 😂 Happy reading!! ❤️


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