- Publisher: First Second; 1st edition
- Language: English
- ASIN: B004JZWWKI
- Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 0.6 x 8.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 38 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,500,747 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Slow Storm Paperback
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About the Author
The success of any graphic novel or comic depends, to a great extent, on the unification of its words and art. Paradoxically, this is often more easily achieved when an artist can interpret the tone and ideas of a separate writer’s story and employ his or her artistic talent to reflect or match them. Here, writer-artist Novgorodoff has achieved a rare level of unification of story and art all by herself. In a tale of resentment and longing for human connection, her somber pictures veritably bleed with those feelings, nearly making the words redundant. Bookended by two huge, metaphorical storms, this is the tale of young firefighter Ursa, who weathers family and work trouble until a young Mexican, on the run from the police, winds up in her fire engine. The emotional highs and lows unwind lyrically, but slowly, requiring patience and concentration to stick with the story. Older teens going through difficult times will find a powerful expression of their moods within these pages. Grades 11-12. --Jesse Karp --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
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Maybe the problem is with the characters themselves. Neither the firefighter Ursa nor the migrant worker Rafi came alive for me. They both have this sense of ennui and dissatisfaction, of not living the live they want to live and feeling trapped and helpless by circumstances. And to be honest, when it comes to fiction I have no patience for ennui and dissatisfaction. I understand why Rafi is trapped, but Novgorodoff doesn't address why Ursa doesn't simply move away from the life she hates. That would have made a good contrast with Rafi, who is truly without options. Ursa has options. She has the freedom to create a new life for herself. But she doesn't take it. Nor is it ever mentioned in "Slow Storm>"
Danica Novgorodoff's art is gorgeous, on the other hand. She does these lovely little ink and watercolor wash pieces that stand in-between realistic and expressionistic. She has a great way of coloring faces; each face has a broad stripe of color across the bridge of the nose. It's an approach that almost looks lazy except it comes off so well. Her panel arrangement is strictly traditional. She sticks mostly to the square-boardered panels, usually about 5-6 to a page but sometimes breaking into a full 9-panel grid. That rigid structure works well with the looseness of her art.
But ultimately comics need to combine both words and pictures. Strength in one will often bolster a weakness in the other, but that isn't the case with "Slow Storm." Novogorodoff's story wasn't strong enough to pull me in, and her art wasn't strong enough to compensate for the weak story.
This snippet is more or less indicative of everything that's wrong with the entire piece. While the charming art highlights the fear and bravery and loneliness of Rafi's story in it's sparse high points, it does Ursa no favors when the story is written the way it is. As you continue trying to connect to the story and start getting sucked into the watercolor landscapes, Novgorodoff ruins it with an intrusive voice over that tells you exactly what you should be feeling. It's the kind of narrative hand holding that only makes how poorly constructed her world is that much more confusing. I mentioned before that the story is far too short. Normally that wouldn't be a problem. But when Novgorodoff guides her characters along at such a frustratingly contrived pace, you end up losing any kind of investment in where any of it's going.
It's a shame, for a piece that had alot of potential for me, and frankly isn't completely bad. But there's not even close to being enough in terms of narrative or character development to make reading it worth anyone's time, let alone the $17.99 price tag. Luckily the novel ends before your first hour reading it, so hopefully you'll have enough time to put it back on the shelf.
Most recent customer reviews
There's a particular kind of graphic novel popping up more and more these days that's kind of like the on-the-page...Read more
It`s slice of life in true sense of the term, one episode in life of U. Crain (Ukraine - maybe Danica`s fatherland - nevermind), female firefighter who in...Read more