Wednesday, 6 July 2011

The Last Dragon

Thanks to netgalley and the respective publishers we get to read up coming books a.k.a. advanced reader copies before they hit the the market and offer our views of them. Coming under here is another one of them, graphic novel The Last Dragon by Jane Yolen and Illustrated by Rebecca Guay.

Here is the summary of the book:

Master storyteller Jane Yolen ("Owl Moon" and "Sword of the Rightful King") and celebrated fantasy artist Rebecca Guay ("Swamp Thing" and "Magic: The Gathering") weave a textured and lyrical tale of adventure, homelands, and heroism the hard way. Two hundred years ago, humans drove the dragons from the islands of May. Now, the last of the dragons rises to wreak havoc anew - with only a healer's daughter and a kite-flying would-be hero standing in its way.

So the story here is pretty simple to follow and the concept pretty old, Dragon. These fire breading reptiles used to rule the lands two thousands years but humans have driven and defeated them in the May islands. But one is still left. The book portrays the life of this one dragon; how it grow un-noticed, how it wreaked havoc in the surrounding village and how eventually it met its end. The plot swirls around the honored fantasy tradition of family caught in the battle to save their village from a rampaging dragon.

The above paragraph makes it sound like a fairy-tale. Well yes it is styled as a fairy-tale. A Chinese or Japanese (don't know the difference b/w their art forms) fairy to be exact since dragons feature heavily in their culture. True to its word every illustration has an oriental touch to it. Certainly every picture has been elegantly drawn, stringing us long to the ancient times. Although e-copies don't exactly make you appreciate the work as much as they do in print but oh well.

So far so good but these factors fall short of the cons present. The story felt rushed, it is be pointed out that a graphic novel works only when they go hand-in-hand with the plot. While the plot was pretty simple a lot more could have been done to it to give it a new touch and the end felt a little bit to rushed to me. Also the title makes it sound like the dragon plays a huge part in it - like it talks or feels - while yes the events center around the reptile shaping the story towards the conclusion but he doesn't do anything else that is implied with a title with ‘dragon’ in it. The story is also pretty slow on the uptake. Also there are no character developments shown.

The illustrations was incredibly beautiful though the story line did not quite resonate with me as much as I had hoped. Pretty much the only reason as to why i'm giving it a 3/5 rating.

Genre :      Fiction, Graphic Novel, Fairy-tale

Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

My Copy : Courtesy of netgalley and the publisher

Rate:              3/5 (Liked it)


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