Graphic Novel Review 223/365: Home Time

Please keep up with all of my old Graphic Novel Reviews here as I quest for 365 in 365 days! Or search #365GN on Twitter.

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Title: Home Time

Author(s): Campbell Whyte

Publisher:  Top Shelf (2017)

Age Rating: 13+

Home Time is a strange bird.  It’s a cool story.  It has approx. four major art shifts.  It’s lengthy and develops and world builds like a champ.  And absolutely nothing ties up at the end of the volume!

I’m aware that this is a Book One, well now I am.  I wasn’t when I started reading.

If you read this book, which you should because it’s unique and fun, be ready for NOTHING to wrap up.  Just when you get to the point in the book that you think Whyte might be winding a few things down, he makes them that more confusing before ending the book.  It’s frustrating.  No doubt.  But this seems to be a trend these days: epic sized graphic novels that are just the first installment of an epic tale.  I dig that.  Build readership and all, but the problem persists, especially for those of us that read HUNDREDS of comics and graphic novels during the span it will take for the next volume to hit shelves: I might not remember much of this monster of a tale when the next one comes out, and I might not have the drive or the want to re-read Book One.  But I might…ugh…tribulations.

There is a lot in this book to like though.  Besides the creative shifts in art, the world building is fantastic.  The story begins as a group of students, ending 8th grade, trek home together, hyped about a co-ed sleepover to celebrate the end of the year.  One of the girls stumbles upon her lost dog, and when the dog finds itself wandered into a river, the students, in an attempt to save the pup, fall into the river and wake up in a strange land run by strange creatures that communicate with plants.  These strange creatures think these humans to be gods of sorts, and the madness continues.

The story spans months in the new place, and most of the conflict comes from those that want to make this new place home and those that want to go back to their old life.

My favorite part of the story exists in the idea that the inhabitants of the new world do not cut, chop, or manipulate the plants and trees of the world.  The vegetation talks to a certain type of plant, and there are negotiations with this special plant as intermediary, arranging the conditions of plant construction.  Sounds confusing, I know, but the book does a fine job explaining it.  Like I said, cool world building rooted in common themes and motifs found in epic tales.

Happy reading!

Eric

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