I read Ghostopolis by Doug Tenapel because I have been reading and enjoying his web comic, Ratfist. I really just grabbed it and didn’t read about it before reading the book. Though Abe warned me that it was published by Scholastic so it really is a children’s book, which is good to know but doesn’t taint the book at all.
Art: 4 stars
I enjoy the art in Rat Fist. I actually enjoyed the art in Ghostopolis even more. The art style is vibrant and active. I think the main difference is the colorist. As much as I enjoy the colors in Rat Fist – it is very appropriate to the story – I enjoyed the colors in Ghostopolis even more. The colors are vibrant but not garish.
Story: 4 stars
Again. I really enjoyed it. It is definitely a children’s story with some jokes slapped in like a made-for-tv kids movie. Sometimes they took me out of the story, but fortunately there are few of them. And I laughed at pretty much all of them. (What a dork, haha.)
The characters are funny. The main dude is not very likeable, but that seems to be the point. Benedict Arnold made me laugh every time he came up. All I had to do was see his hilariously portrayed face. I really enjoyed a lot of the characters and wanted to see much more of many of the secondary characters.
Unfortunately, the ending was abrupt and weird. Perhaps even preachy. It felt like there should be so much more story. It reminded me of the Wizard of Oz, but if after saving the scarecrow it had dawned on Dorothy to click here heels and head home. It is like he had a page limit he couldn’t go over and the first ¾ of the story took longer than he anticipated. It was a bit of a let down after getting to know and enjoy the characters so well in the first part.
Overall: 4 stars
Definitely recommend. Based on Abe’s suggestion, for not much younger than a 10 or 11 year old. I wouldn’t say it has much more complex ideas than the first Harry Potter. The story discusses death and time travel, sort of. It’s a little sad, but not horribly so.
I was really happy with this and would like to find more books by Mr. Tenapel. He is quickly becoming one of my favorite creators. It sounds like the Rat Fist web comic is wrapping up, so I really hope he starts up a new one when he is done. He has an interesting art style and ponders interesting ideas in his stories. It was an interesting story and I am glad I read it.
You can read Abe's review here. Some fan art from yours truly.
Ghostopolis fan art by ~lunavalse on deviantART