Thursday, February 25, 2010

Meanwhile by Jason Shiga

"Meanwhile" by Jason Shiga is one doozy of a graphic novel. The main character is a boy whose journey starts out with ordering ice cream. Readers make decisions that lead to different pages with different scenarios, the first of which is as simple as chocolate versus vanilla. The boy then goes on to meet a mad scientist with many inventions. The story diverges yet again when the reader decides which device the boy will tinker with. More diversity comes when new characters emerge--some of which are directly correlated with a doomsday of sorts. The story goes on in many directions afterward.

This book is remarkably creative. The cartoon slides do not progress in a linear fashion; rather, they are discombobulated and connected with lines. Also, the tabs on the sides that protrude from each page make this interactive book fun to flip through as the story progresses. The style of art is quirky and fun for young children. After going through just a few of the boasted 3,856 story scenarios, readers will not be surprised to read on the last page of the book that the author graduated college with a degree in pure mathematics.

Reviewer Age:18
Reviewer City, State and Country: Troy, NY USA