Several years ago, The Stonekeeper (Amulet, #1) came out. This was at the start of graphic novels being accepted in mainstream. I was still wary of them, thinking I am not an “art driven person” what couldthey give me to me? What could Kazu Kibuishi give me that text alone could not? Honestly, had I read it “back then” I would not have enjoyed it half as much as I actually did. With that said, I do wish I had the whole series, or a number of titles as the open ending was slightly disappointing.
This is a good middle reader graphic novel. It is seriously illustration heavy, but that is perfect for the story. You need to see more of the action than hear/read about it. The art is detailed and colored to not only compliment the text but tell the story on its own. It is a realistic science-fiction/fantasy story about siblings, family and power.
Siblings Emily and Navin moved with their widowed mother to their great-grandfathers house. Rumors of it being haunted turn out to be true. And it is up to Em and Navin to save their mother, help their great-grandfathers robotic creations (he was a puzzle maker but seem to make the menagerie of sweet, grumpy and pink bunny-robots) and stop the stranger finding them. All while learning how to use a mystical amulet that has chosen Emily as its new master.
The characters are realistic, if not a bit of a stereotype. But that is easily forgiven as that is what is needed to move the story along. There are a few emotionally intense scenes (spoiler: you see the accident that kills the father; the monsters that take the mother; there is fantasy magic and action) therefore the more sensitive reader might not be able to handle this. But strong 10 to 14 would perhaps be the best audience.