Book Mini-Review – The Strain Volume 1 by Guillermo Del Toro, Mike Huddleston, David Lapham, Dan Jackson

Title: The Strain: Volume 1Book Review Image
Authors: Guillermo Del Toro, Mike Huddleston, David Lapham, Dan Jackson
ISBN: 978-1-61655-548-1
No. of Pages: 272
Genre: Graphic Novel; Horror
Origins: Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: 22 July 2014
Bottom Line: Fantastic illustrations that enhance this frightening story

The Strain: Volume 1 by Guillermo Del Toro, Mike Huddleston, David Lapham, Dan JacksonSynopsis:

“When a Boeing 777 lands at JFK International Airport and goes dark on the runway, the Centers for Disease Control, fearing a terrorist attack, calls in Dr. Ephraim Goodweather and his team of expert biological-threat first responders. Only an elderly pawnbroker from Spanish Harlem suspects a darker purpose behind the event—an ancient threat intent on covering mankind in darkness.”

Thoughts:      Having read the entire series when the books were first released, this reading of the graphic novel was nothing more than an opportunity to see the story in pictures, as Guillermo Del Toro imagined it to be as he was writing the novels. Anyone else looking to do the same will not be disappointed. Similarly, fans of horror will find much to love about the graphic rendering of this creepy story.

It must be stated that while Del Toro himself calls this a vampire story, the illustrations prove without a doubt that these nasty creatures are not vampires. The tentacles protruding from their mouths are all the visual proof one needs to realize this. Then there is the method by which the creatures reproduce. Again, this has nothing to do with the vampire mythology but more with the zombie myths. If anything, to call this series a vampire story does the series a disservice because the creatures are much nastier than any of the vampire iterations established throughout the years.

One other thing to strike readers perusing the graphic novel is the characters themselves. There is an otherworldly aspect about all of the illustrations that hints at the darkness to come, both literally as the story progresses and figuratively in the characters’ actions. All of the characters appear larger than life, more cartoonish than realistic, but rather than making them clownish, these details help showcase the stakes each character faces and the huge leaps of faith and development they must make if they stand a chance of survival.

The graphic novel version of The Strain is a faithful rendering of the original story with the added bonus of terrifying images sanctioned by the authors. These illustrations drive home the point that these things are no longer human and a true scourge on society. Having the visual cues to coincide with the written ones makes The Strain one of the scarier novels to read. In other words, it is something true horror fans should not miss.

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Book Review – The Appetites of Girls by Pamela Moses

The Appetites of Girls by Pamela Moses

Title: The Appetites of Girls Author: Pamela Moses ISBN: 9780399158421 No. of Pages: 384 Genre: Fiction Origins: Amy Einhorn Books/Putnam Release Date: 26 June 2014 Bottom Line: Great characters and even better message Synopsis: “Self-doubting Ruth is coddled by her immigrant mother, who uses food to soothe and control. Defiant Francesca believes her heavy frame…

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Book Review – Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

Title: Big Little Lies Author: Liane Moriarty ISBN: 9780399167065 No. of Pages: 480 Genre: Fiction Origins: Amy Einhorn Books Release Date: 29 July 2014 Bottom Line: Excellent story with wonderful characters Synopsis: “Madeline is a force to be reckoned with. She’s funny and biting, passionate, she remembers everything and forgives no one. Her ex-husband and…

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It’s Monday, July 28th! What Are You Reading?

What Are You Reading?

Hosted by Sheila from Book Journey, this is a weekly event to share what we’ve read in the past week and what we hope to read, plus whatever else comes to mind. Finished Last Week: Currently Reading: Currently Listening: Up Next:     What are you reading?

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The Sunday Salon – July 27th Edition

The Sunday Salon

A quiet Sunday morning - this is indeed a rare occurrence these days. So, my goal is to take full advantage of it, and relax. If the dogs can sleep all day and all night, then I think I should try to do that too. Right? The weather this summer has been absolutely gorgeous, humid but…

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Book Review – California by Edan Lepucki

California by Edan Lepucki

Title: California Author: Edan Lepucki ISBN: 9780316250818 No. of Pages: 400 Genre: Science Fiction Origins: Little, Brown and Company Release Date: 8 July 2014 Bottom Line: Interesting but not life-changing Synopsis: “The world Cal and Frida have always known is gone, and they’ve left the crumbling city of Los Angeles far behind them. They now…

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Book Review – Evergreen by Rebecca Rasmussen

Evergreen by Rebecca Rasmussen

Title: Evergreen Author: Rebecca Rasmussen ISBN: 9780385350990 No. of Pages: 352 Genre: Historical Fiction Origins: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group Release Date: 15 July 2014 Bottom Line: Beautiful and evocative Synopsis: “It is 1938 when Eveline, a young bride, follows her husband into the wilderness of Minnesota. Though their cabin is rundown, they have a river…

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Book Review – The Young World by Chris Weitz

The Young World by Chris Weitz

Title: The Young World Author: Chris Weitz ISBN: 9780316226295 No. of Pages: 384 Genre: Young Adult; Science Fiction Origins: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers Release Date: 29 July 2014 Bottom Line: Decent Synopsis: “Welcome to New York, a city ruled by teens. After a mysterious Sickness wipes out the rest of the population, the…

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Book Review – The Good Girl by Mary Kubica

The Good Girl by Mary Kubica

Title: The Good Girl Author: Mary Kubica ISBN: 9780778316558 No. of Pages: 352 Genre: Suspense Origins: Harlequin MIRA Release Date: 29 July 2014 Bottom Line: Excellent thriller Synopsis: “Born to a prominent Chicago judge and his stifled socialite wife, Mia Dennett moves against the grain as a young inner-city art teacher. One night, Mia enters…

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It’s Monday, July 21st! What Are You Reading?

What Are You Reading?

Hosted by Sheila from Book Journey, this is a weekly event to share what we’ve read in the past week and what we hope to read, plus whatever else comes to mind. Finished Last Week: Did Not Finish: Within the first ten pages of starting this novel, I knew it was not for me. The…

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