Author: Katie Cook
Length: 64 pages
Publisher: Action Lab Entertainment (3 March 2015)
A First Time for Everything:
“In every forest, hidden deep within the tree… there are monsters, big, scary, mean, hulking monsters. Well… some of them aren’t very scary…”
Gronk: A Monster Story is the first graphic novel/comic I am reviewing on this site. I love this form of storytelling but haven’t been able to obtain a review copy until now.
Now Gronk: A Monster Story is about a monster, Gronk, who is a monster in form but not at heart. While his mates look terrifying and scary, he appears cuddly and adorable. His best attempts at being a monster always inspires laughter and scorn from the others.
Living with other monsters becomes an unbearable for Gronk, so one day he leaves. After roaming around, he meets Dale Wilco, a music composer who, at first, is afraid of the little monster; but they soon become friends.
Dale adopts Gronk and introduces him to her dog, Harli, and Kitty the cat. Together, the house occupants forge an amicable relationship, experiencing different adventures together and learning from one another.
The first thing that catches the eye in Gronk, A Monster Story is the art. It looks simple but lovely. The colour combination is magnificent and the character expressions draws you into the story without use of much words. It is so basic that even a five-year-old can grasp the flow.
Now the story itself seems to me, bizarre. It starts by giving an insight into Gronk’s background and disposition, as well as his chance meeting with Dale. However, the moment Gronk moves into Dale’s house, the story takes a halt. What follows from there on are manoeuvres that stretch in different directions, leaving huge gaps in the tale, confusing me as to what the point of the book is – a single narrative about Gronk's adventures with his new friends or a collection of sketch stories.
Lastly, this graphic novel is categorised under the “Children’s Fiction” by the publisher, hence, I was surprised to note a couple of swear or rude words in it. I am not sure whether the publisher made a mistake or it is a deliberate ploy by the author. But considering its present category, I find that disturbing.
Lovely blend of colours
Inappropriate language for category
Many thanks to Diamond Book Distributors for review copy.