stonekeeper.jpgAmulet (Book #1 – The Stonekeeper)
By Kazu Kibuishi
Graphix (Scholastic)
ISBN 9780439846813
Grades 5-7
In Stores

I’m going to go ahead and say something that will not surprise you at all, so please don’t do a mocking spit-take with your morning coffee: graphic novels are unique. They have the ability to draw in reluctant readers like nothing else in print. Must be the cool pictures. Some GN’s hit, some miss, and some reside in a place I like to call “Inbetweensville”. While it didn’t exactly move me, there’s no doubt that “Stone Keeper” will find an eager audience ready to follow this new series.

The story begins with an emotional hay maker. A dramatic (see also: scary as all git out) car accident leaves Emily, her brother Navin, and their mother reeling. Fast forward two years and the three of them are moving to an old family house in the country, eager for a fresh start. Then things start to get weird. Emily discovers a mysterious necklace. Strange noises appear. When their mother investigates and disappears, Emily and Navin are forced to enter into a dangerous alternate universe full of man eating arachnopods (half spider, half octopus) to get her back. Their search brings them into contact with their great-grandfather Silas and his loyal band of robots, who offer to help the children find their mom.

It must be said that “The Stonekeeper” has its moments of excitement. A sequence when the kids and their robotic pink bunny guide, Miskit, travel through the Gauntlet is genuinely thrilling; battles with the aforementioned arachnopods will undoubtedly grab young reader’s attention.

“Amulet” will receive love from the graphic novel fans, but I’m not sure if it’s going to inspire new converts to the genre. A solid effort, but not a revelation.

Also reviewed by: A Year of Reading, Bookami, Read About Comics.

Find this book at your local library with WorldCat