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Review: Americus by MK Reed and Jonathan Hill

in a sentence or so: Neil's best friend moves away and his favorite book is in the process of getting banned from his local library just before he starts his freshman year of high school. Neil will have to stand up for his friends, for what he believes, and ultimately for himself.

Neil and his best friend Danny are quite taken with an epic fantasy series. when Danny's mom finds out that there are witches and magic, she's not too happy about it. in fact, she's downright angry. she begins a movement to get the books banned from the library and sends Danny to military school in the meantime. Neil is left to fend for himself and fight against the crazy moms trying to ban the best books ever and navigate the choppy waters of high school as a glaringly obvious nerd.

this graphic novel alternates between Neil's tale and that of the fantasy series within the book, "The Chronicles of Apathea Ravenchilde". as you can guess, the book within the book represents the struggle for identity and doing what's right, just as the plot with Neil does. the inner book doesn't dominate the read, but rather adds another layer and insight to the plot. while teen characters were fleshed out and complex, the crazy mom character was two dimensional and Totally Wrong and didn't have balance or depth, so that was a bummer.

while some good issues are raised and some questions are explored, i think more balance and redemption with characters could have taken this read to the next level. overall, this was a quick read and one that i'd definitely recommend to book clubs or to chat about with others!

fave quote: "...and finally, no jokes about your tools. You're not clever, wise guys, and I'm sick of hearing them." (Neil's shop teacher on his first day of school, pg 127)

fix er up: depth and detail, please!

title: Americus
author: MK Reed and Jonathan Hill
publishing info: August 2011, First Second (imprint of Macmillan)
genre: Graphic Novel, Contemporary, Coming of Age, Middle Grade

[ftc notice: i received a copy of this book for review from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. i did not receive compensation of any kind for this review. thanks, Macmillan!]

Lisa is a gamer, crafter, fangirl, mother, wife and unabashed nerd who is pretty ridiculous and it's best you know that up front. When she's not binge watching Netflix or crafting into the wee hours of the night, you can find her spending a lot of her time on Pinterest and Twitter.


  1. i've always wanted to be able to get into the graphic novel-thing. but sadly, i just haven't been able to yet. admittedly, though, i do keep trying.

    i see that you're reading world war z. mike the hubby just read that not too long ago. he liked it and had lots of thoughts about it. i'm sure he'll be excited to see yours if you decide to talk about them. :)


  2. maybe Scott Pilgrim would be up your alley? it's a pretty fun intro to the graphic novel genre. that or Robot Dreams would be ones i recommend for you!


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