This book is part of the NetGalley ARCs that I have backlogged, and am trying to clear out.
Truth be told, I don't quite know where to start with my feelings on this book. So, I suppose I'll just type and see where it takes me. Let me say, for a story titled The Book of Storms, there wasn't much action or excitement to be had. In fact, this entire book had a very lackluster vibe to it. This was a definite case of a brilliant idea, succumbing to poor execution. Danny's new found abilities had the opportunity to be absolutely amazing. There just wasn't enough here to support it.
This book moves too slowly for its own good. There truthfully wasn't any point that felt like a climax, although I could see where it was likely supposed to be. In fact, Danny's whole journey just didn't feel genuine. To me, the point of a life altering journey is to grow and change. To realize your inner potential. Danny's character felt stagnant, and that put a damper on things. Even when he was being "brave", it didn't feel like the truth. Not having a strongly written main character makes for a difficult read.
Now, I probably could have forgiven all of this and given this book a 3-star rating if it weren't for Sammael's character. I love a well-written villain. I have no issue completely loathing a character, as long as I can understand him. Sammael was vague. He was paper thin. His character wasn't developed, but simply written as being this mean spirited entity that had a chip on his shoulder against human kind. If I had to guess, I think the key point here was that he hated humans for ruining the Earth. Maybe. It's hard to tell. Add in the fact that he blatantly abused his animal companion, and I was so done with his character. I don't care how terrible you are, you don't abuse an animal. Especially in a book billed for an MG audience.
Alas, this just wasn't what I expected it to be. I did finish, to see whether the ending would bring this story around. Instead, I was given an ending that just made me sigh in frustration. This is a series, so my only hope is that Danny will grow in the stories to come.
Well now, this was a treat. I've been on a graphic novel reading binge lately and, as much as I love a vibrant panel, the first thing that caught my eye here was the stark black and white inking. This is the story of Nate. Of his move to a new place, of finding a mysterious recorder, and of discovering that there are things out there well beyond what we can imagine. I would have thought that I'd want this story told to me in color. Honestly though? Now that I've read it I can't imagine it any other way.
The art in these panels is stunning. It's crisp, the faces are realistic, and it suits the mood of this story perfectly. While this is a little darker than most YA graphic novels out there, it places one foot firmly in the world of Fantasy. The pages are populated with all manner of both interesting and slightly unnerving characters. The world that Nate finds has quite a different type of soldier. Squirrels, rag dolls, and bugs, they are all pawns in this ongoing battle. It makes this story magical, and slightly eerie.
Highly recommended! I thoroughly enjoyed this.