Sunday, December 6, 2015

Jane, the Fox and Me by Fanny Britt Review

Title: Jane, the Fox and Me
Author: Fanny Britt (illustrator) Christelle Morelli (translator)
Pages:  104
Published: September 1st 2013 by Groundwood Books
Source: Library
Links: goodreads ,

Hélène has been inexplicably ostracized by the girls who were once her friends. Her school life is full of whispers and lies — Hélène weighs 216; she smells like BO. Her loving mother is too tired to be any help. Fortunately, Hélène has one consolation, Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre. Hélène identifies strongly with Jane’s tribulations, and when she is lost in the pages of this wonderful book, she is able to ignore her tormentors. But when Hélène is humiliated on a class trip in front of her entire grade, she needs more than a fictional character to allow her to see herself as a person deserving of laughter and friendship.
Leaving the outcasts’ tent one night, Hélène encounters a fox, a beautiful creature with whom she shares a moment of connection. But when Suzanne Lipsky frightens the fox away, insisting that it must be rabid, Hélène’s despair becomes even more pronounced: now she believes that only a diseased and dangerous creature would ever voluntarily approach her. But then a new girl joins the outcasts’ circle, Géraldine, who does not even appear to notice that she is in danger of becoming an outcast herself. And before long Hélène realizes that the less time she spends worrying about what the other girls say is wrong with her, the more able she is to believe that there is nothing wrong at all. This emotionally honest and visually stunning graphic novel reveals the casual brutality of which children are capable, but also assures readers that redemption can be found through connecting with another, whether the other is a friend, a fictional character or even, amazingly, a fox.
I remember hearing about this graphic novel as soon as it came out. I have two fellow bloggers (Bookish Whimsy, and  Picture Me Reading) who just love Jane Eyre and that is where I first saw mention of this graphic novel.  I thought about not reading it since I haven't read Jane Eyre but thought I would give it a go.  My library never had it though so then I just forgot about it.  Recently my library did order it because a new edition came out.

I think what makes Jane, the Fox and Me a great graphic novel is the artwork.  In Helene's world everything is dark and grey. Helene is a girl who is bullied and and tries to hide.  She goes to school and doesn't want to be noticed.  I think a lot of us have been there at some point in our lives.  She then finds out that her school is going on a camping field trip and she will be stuck with all these kids. I can imagine how awful that would be.  Helene finds refuge in a book.. Jane Eyre!  So the book will all of a sudden change art technique to colors and different handwriting when talking about Jane Eyre.   I thought this was interesting.  Sometimes we find friends in odd places and for her at this time in her life it was in a book.

Eventually... Helene meets this little fox.  He comes in the night when she is at this campout with all those kids.  The fox comes up to her like he will be her friend until one of the kids comes out and scares the fox off. Eventually after this Helene does meet a friend.. and then a few more.  I suppose they are all outcasts of sorts but they find friendship with each other.  Eventually... this can happen to all of us but I think only if you are in the right place at the right time.  I felt bad for her mother in the book.  Her mom tries to understand and help Helene.  I think she can tell that Helene has a hard time at school but Helene tries to hide it from her mom.  Her mom is her friend though and Helene knows this.

This book isn't amazing.. I just think it is really good because most of us can relate to the things that happen to Helene. Plus the illustrations really bring out the emotions that Helene is feeling.  It is definitely a book worth checking out from the library and just reading in one sitting.

4 out of 5

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Comic Adventures Issue #33

I read a lot of comics and rarely review them here on the blog. That's because I really don't have a lot to say for an entire post.  So I thought I would review several comics on one post.  I will still review graphic novels on their own now and then, but this is where I will talk about super-hero type comics (DC/Marvel) or sequels to some that I have already reviewed.

This issue I talk about Ms. Marvel vol. 2 Generation Why,  Flash Vol 6. Out of Time, Saga Vol. 5, and He-Man and the Masters of the Universe Vol. 5.

I am really enjoying this series by Marvel.  The humor is great, and I like how Ms. Marvel (Kamala) is unsure of herself as a superhero but having fun at the same time. I like how the Inhumans are discovering her and even send a dog her way (Lockjaw).  He is cute and hilarious.  I hope she keeps him around for a big part of the series. Oh and did I mention that Wolverine is in this volume???  He and Kamala have kind of similar personalities. Let's be honest here... the artwork is kind of lacking.  For this being such a popular comic I would think that the art would be a little better.  I agree with others who have said Ms. Marvel needs a good super villain. So far there hasn't been one.  The villain so far has been this guy who was harvesting kids and using their energies.  Then it turned out the kids wanted that to happen because it would save the world or something by using their energies.  ODD.  I do like this comic a lot.  I find it witty.  I look forward to the series continuing.

4 out of 5

I am still into the Flash series.  Possibly because I love the show and want to learn more about his background and villains.  This was a time travel volume.  Flash (himself) comes back from the future to try to fix time.  So he comes back to fix some sort of rip in the Speed Force.  Interesting enough.. but time travel is sort of bleh.  There was a little love triangle story going on here.  I am not sure what is going to happen with that?  I didn't even realize it but in this comic alone are 6 Flashes.  All crossing paths.  I don't know .. I didn't even recognize all of them. Oh and there is a lot of plot in this novel that takes place after the whole Crime Syndicate story line.  Which I can't seem to get my hands on.  So basically all the DC comics that came out in 2015 are taking place after this event so it would seem like we all need to read that one before moving onto any other stories.  Sigh.

3 out of 5

I am now all the way caught up to the published volumes in the Saga collection and that is a bummer. Honestly... I don't know what is taking so long to write these, there really isn't a lot of dialog so come on!!  Maybe the artwork is what takes the longest? I can't find a release date anywhere for Saga Vol. 6.  Sigh. There is a cat in the comics that knows when people are lying and I actually thought of this cat today when I thought of someone lying!  The characters just stay with you even after you finish the comic. I've said it before and I'll say it again... this comic can get weird.  Giant lizards pee on people... and it's drawn out. There are some morals to this comic.. about war, friends, family, love, and all that jazz. Whenever I start these comics I think to myself "this is so weird, why am I reading this" then I get half way through and think "I can't get enough of this comic!!".  If you haven't started this series do it NOW.

5 out of 5

I feel like I am the only one reading this comic book series.  Only 15 reviews on goodreads for it. 15!!! WHAT!  Where are the He-Man fans???  I like this comic book series.  This particular volume is giving us a background one everyone.  Adora and how she becomes She-Ra. We get to see how she becomes acquainted with Swift Wind.  We get to see the mother of Skeletor too.  The comic tells how the two swords are made (She-Ra's and He-Man's).  Adam must become King of Eternia now that his father is passed so this is leading up to the next comic which isn't vol 6.  It's a new name "He-Man and the Eternity War Vol 1). I just hope the He-Man comics don't end after the Eternity War Vol. 2.  The art in this issue is really great.  I just get so excited when I see She-Ra in anything. I mean... look at the cover on this issue!!!  There is even a bonus story at the very end of the comic with a story about Adam as a young boy.

5 out of 5

This counts for 60 comics towards my 2015 Graphic Novels Challenge!!