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Jellaby: Monster in the City Paperback – Bargain Price, April 21, 2009

4.3 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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Paperback, Bargain Price, April 21, 2009
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"I'm addicted to Jellaby! Kean Soo's storytelling is irresistible. I can't wait to see what happens next."

"Jellaby will win your heart. Kean Soo's drawings are full of life and wonder, his characters curious and real, but the world of Jellaby hints of strange, dark mysteries bubbling just beneath the surface--what more could you ask for in a good children's book?" --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Born in England and raised in Hong Kong, Kean Soo settled in Canada, where he planned to embark on a career in electrical engineering. However, he discovered that he'd rather draw comics instead. Kean began posting his comics on the internet in 2002, and later became an assistant editor and regular contributor to the all-ages FLiGHT anthologies. His online work has been nominated for several awards, including an Eisner Award nomination for Jellaby. Kean likes carrots, but not nearly as much as he likes tuna sandwiches, usually with lots and lots of wasabi mayonnaise. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Hyperion Book CH (April 21, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1423105656
  • ASIN: B00375LNXS
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,497,148 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
ARC provided by NetGalley

Portia is a quiet, but bright young girl who has just moved to a new neighborhood and a new school. It's hard enough to get used to these changes, but she's also adjusting to life without her father, who has mysteriously disappeared. And to make things even stranger her mom is acting distant! What's a girl to do? But then one night, after a strange and troubling dream, Portia discovers a shy, sweet, loving purple monster in the woods behind her house. Portia's life with Jellaby is definitely a lot more interesting now, but where did he come from? And what secrets does he know?

*brief note* OK if you've read Jellaby before this is a reprint of the first book. But Kean Soo has gone back in and redone some of the illustrations and cleaned them up a bit taking into account everything he's learned over the years.*

This is my first foray into the Jellaby world and...I love it! I mean seriously how can you not like a female character that's bright, intelligent, and just wants to have a couple of friends without demeaning her own intelligence? And then you get Jellaby who doesn't talk at, but communicates through the shaking of his head and other non-verbal queues. He's just so much fun to watch and wonder what he's going to do as he figures out the world around him, including eating some flowers. Kean has created engaging characters that feel like you could step out your door and run into them in your neighborhood. Even the bullies that Portia encounters aren't crude half portrayed characters, but they have depth to them. Overall the writing reminds me a bit of Hayao Miyazaki, with the depth to the characters.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The story line is great, illustrations or great, and it is interesting and compelling.

The binding, though, is another thing. It lasted only 3 readers then pages started falling out of the book. This book is NEW and the pages were falling out from the very first set of pages straight through to the middle of the book. The binding is very poor quality, the worst that I have seen in many years. How did this low-quality binding get past Scholastic?
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By E. Kennen on January 10, 2014
Format: Paperback
Jellaby might be the most adorable monster/dragon ever created. His every nod or wide-eyed stare had my daughter and I melting in our seats. But this graphic novel isn't just about an irresistible critter and all his (?) cute, funny antics. It is also about a girl whose daily companion is loneliness -- caused by the inexplicable loss of her father at a young age and the social chasm that separating a weirdo like her from the rest of the kids at school. JELLABY is about family and loyalty, in whatever shapes they come in. And be prepared because, most heartbreakingly of all, it is a cliff-hanger of a story.

This is a sweet, often light-hearted, sometimes melancholy, story of friendship and adventures through the halls of public school and, perhaps, through darker realms. Highly recommend it for any kid fans of graphic novels, reluctant readers, or kids contemplating getting into comics.

I received a digital copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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Format: Paperback
Reason for Reading: Next in the series.

I enjoyed this volume a might better than the first since I at least knew what to expect but was still disappointed. Sure I love the illustrations; they are cute and all once you get used to the teeny kids and I like the expressions the artist can convey just with the character's eyes. But story wise I did not find it satisfying. Too many questions were left in my mind and no questions were answered. What happened to Portia's father? Is Jellaby an imaginary friend? If so, why can others see him? Or do they really see him? The ending leaves this all up in the air and just left me feeling flat and disappointed. Others really enjoy this little series but I have to say it just wasn't my cup of tea.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love this series, and I wish it had gone on longer, though the storyline is pretty nicely wrapped up in the two volumes that it covers. I like the art style a lot and think there's valuable content for elementary school students (or even middle school students) on issues of loneliness, friendship, decision making, loyalty, etc., especially if a parent or teacher was going to discuss it with kid(s) reading it. For kids and up--I enjoyed reading it as an adult, too.
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Format: Paperback
My 11 year old daughter read this book and here's what she has to say about it: It was a adventure book lots of exciting parts to remember. This book you will just get excited more if you keep on reading. It was not too short -- it fit right where I settled. It had 172 pages in the whole book. Just to let you know, this is a comic book -- if you don't like those books this book will not be suited for you.
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Format: Paperback
Before I begin -- yes, I have read the first "Jellaby" book. I found it cute and charming, but with some hints to a dark overarching plot that surprised me given the art style and the predominately pink and lavender color palette of the comic. The story of a couple of children finding a weird creature and having to hide it and/or return it home has been done countless times (E.T. being perhaps the most famous example), but it looked as if the Jellaby series was going to offer a new twist on the tale.

While I agree with other reviewers that the second book in the series, "Monster in the City," is better than the first story-wise, it also has some serious flaws that rather spoil the story for me.

When the first Jellaby book left off, outcast Portia and nerdy Jason were trying to help their monster friend, Jellaby, find the way home by taking him to a festival in Toronto. In this book, they find a mysterious doorway that leads to the lair of Xolotl, another monster who is lonely for companionship and has a masked stage magician lure young children to her underground home. Unfortunately, Xolotl is possessive and short-tempered, and her "friends" generally don't last very long. When Jason ends up in Xolotl's clutches, it's up to Portia and Jellaby to rescue him.

The art style of these books is simplistic and stylized, with a black, white, and lavender color scheme touched with magenta and orange here and there. For me, I can't quite decide if it fits the story or distracts the viewer, since it seems to be a style more fitting for a children's book than a graphic novel, especially since this one takes some eerie, dark turns in a story that started off whimsical. I do like Xolotl's design, though Jellaby looks more weird than cute to me.
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