Saturday, April 5, 2008

30 Days of Night by Steve Niles and Ben Templesmith

iconiconI snuck this one in just last night, taking a short break from my current read, Change of Heart by Jodi Picoult.

30 Days of Night was my first-ever graphic novel. I usually don't go for that kind of thing, but the movie was really good so I was curious about the book. I also want to read the sequels to find out what happens after the movie ends, so I figured I should probably read the first one first.

Most of my observations about the book are actually observations about graphic novels:

* I had to keep reminding myself to slow down and look at the pictures, rather than just reading the dialogue. I'm not used to having artwork to look at, let alone a handful or more of illustrations on every page. Often I caught myself skimming along just reading the dialogue, and had to make myself go back and look at the pictures for more clues about what was going on.

* There is a lot going on in the illustrations. There are many visual cues buried in the illustrations, so you can't depend solely on the dialogue. I'm there there is plenty that I missed in the parts that I skimmed.

I actually found the graphic novel format a little overwhelming — having both dialogue to read and illustrations to look at made it difficult to keep up with everything. You can miss a lot more of what's going on this way, because the interpretation of pictures is more subjective. However, I also get the feeling that you could reread this book over and over and get something new from it every time — which is perhaps why fans of graphic novels like them so much.

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