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Girl Genius Omnibus Volume One: Agatha Awakens Hardcover – February 28, 2012
"Children of Blood and Bone"
Tomi Adeyemi conjures a stunning world of dark magic and danger in her West African-inspired fantasy debut. Pre-order today
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“A sly and witty graphic novel.” ―School Library Journal, Best Adult Books for High School Students 2003
“If Jules Verne has written comics, he wouldn't have written Girl Genius. He would have been jealous of it, though.” ―Comics Buyer's Guide
“The Foglios appear to have been liberated by the [webcomics] format―and that sense of buoyant imagination and unbridled fun runs through every page.” ―The Onion A.V. Club
“A manic, hilarious, adventure-filled gem of a comic. The series is made of win and I have only one regret: that I didn't know about it sooner. Do yourself a favor and go read it, NOW.” ―The Book Smugglers
“Girl Genius is unique. Buy it.” ―Comics Buyer's Guide
“Bursting at the seam with creativity, humor, and outright weirdness . . . an infectious and incredibly fun read.” ―Sarah Kuhn, IGN
“Girl Genius is brilliant. It really is. It's fun and funky and unlike almost anything else, and it's Phil and Kaja Foglio doing what they do best.” ―Eric Burns, Websnark.com
“It's appealingly drawn and cleverly written and cheerfully pulpy in all the right ways.” ―Shaenon Garrity, The Webcomics Examiner
“Professionally executed artwork and a spanking story that makes it a timeless work of literature.” ―Shiny Shiny: a Girl's Guide to Gadgets
About the Author
PHIL and KAJA FOGLIO are the co-creators of the Hugo Award–winning and Eagle and Eisner Award–nominated webcomic Girl Genius. Phil Foglio illustrated Robert Asprin's MythAdventures series, and Kaja Foglio contributed art for Magic: the Gathering. Kaja and Phil were married in 1993. They have a son and a daughter, and live in Seattle.
Top customer reviews
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I bought the Tor color omnibus version largely because of the cost. There are a *lot* of Girl Genius books now, and my budget was limited. If you are a very serious fan and don't have teen/tween kids stealing your books then you might prefer the individual books.
The Tor edition is just slightly smaller than the Airship Press edition. (Approximately 1" shorter and slightly narrower pages.) The size is still very readable, much larger than the old black & white omnibus edition. The book is a standard hardcover with dust jacket, just like most other hardcover novels you'll find on Amazon. The paper is perhaps not as nice quality as the Airship versions, but you get what you pay for. The quality of the images is great, and the book is nice to read. While it doesn't include any extras, it does have a handy introduction to the main characters and simplified cover pages to mark where each of the original books starts.
I'm really glad that the Foglios have managed to get this color omnibus printed, and I'm hoping that more will soon follow.
This is the uniquely lovely story of Agatha, a young university research assistant in a world in which assisting in research is more likely to involve a request like “Igor! Fetch me a fresh brain for the creature!” than a request like “Igor! Summarize these results and submit them to the peer review board!” In short, it is a world of mad science at its most glorious and colorful. The author/artists always keep one foot firmly in the world of comedy and the other firmly in the world of bombastic adventure. Even when the artillery shells are falling or the revenants are attacking, there’s never a sense that the story is taking itself too seriously (or at all seriously). The characters walk a wonderfully fine line between being believable and sympathetic and being stand-up comedians (or fall guys, as the situation requires). At the heart of the story is Agatha’s personal journey toward discovering the truth about her past, concealed from her for so many years, and reclaiming her birthright (after hopefully figuring out what that actually is).
The art in these books is spectacular; while it doesn’t quite rise to the level of aesthetic clarity that Bone or Calvin & Hobbes sometimes display, it’s always enthusiastic, vibrant, and bursting with details. The Foglios wear their love for intricate machinery and detailed panoramas on their sleeves, and there’s never a shortage of enormous robo-knights, looming airships, crumbling cities, or the like. Not only is the art visually engaging, it’s also just as funny as the writing (and special mention must be made here of Othar Trygvassen, whose dialogue and art together make up some of the funniest moments in the series).
Really, perhaps the best thing that can be said about these comics, both in their art and in their writing, is that there’s not a hint of the cynicism or the angst that seems to be so pervasive in modern entertainment media. The prevailing mood in Girl Genius is glee, unrestrained and unrelenting.
While the authors are quite subdued by contrast with mainstream comic books, it’s rather unfortunate that the female figure is on display as often as it is. There’s no nudity, and very little in the nature of sexual comments, but Agatha seems to gravitate toward pin-up poses with distressing frequency. It’s a bit of a blemish on an otherwise brilliant set of stories.
My only complaint is that the series has been going on for a long time and thus it's pretty complicated by now, and I'm sure that the Foglios have every intention of resolve every last plot line, however it looks like at their current pace that that could be many, many years from now, and I just get impatient because the story is issued weekly (M-W-F), and so one often finds oneself on a cliff hanger over the weekend...very frustrating (in facetious tone of course).