ARC Review: The Lost Boy

The Lost Boy - Greg Ruth

When I requested The Lost Boy, I didn't know that it was actually a graphic novel, so imagine my surprise when I opened the file on my NOOK and a bunch of pictures showed up. All of the graphic novels I'd read up until then had all been Japanese (translated to English of course) so The Lost Boy was actually my first American graphic novel. I was already kind of getting back into reading this type of stuff so The Lost Boy caught me at probably the best time.

Upon moving into his new house, Nate discovers a tape recorder narrated by a boy who had previously lived in the house and gone missing. As Nate listens, the narrator's story becomes weirder and weirder. But as Nate continues to listen, he begins to see some awfully strange things....

What I liked: I thought the artwork was great. Some of the bigger pictures in The Lost Boy made me wish I had a physical copy of the graphic novel. You could really see the detail carefully sketched into every picture. Honestly, I think the artwork was my favorite part. There were times when I would just stare at a page and wish. If you're interested in reading this, definitely pick it up at the library or buy at the bookstore. You'll have a better reading experience with it in your hands than on your ereader.

What I was a little iffy on: The story was interesting enough but I felt like Ruth didn't spend enough time explaining things. Even now, I'm not really certain what all those little forest creatures were called and how or why a doll is among that world. Yes, a baby doll was walking around, which could have been creepy I suppose but I didn't really get the creep factor. I mostly just wondered why a doll was so knowledgeable. I get that there's magic involved but sometimes I felt like I had just been dropped into the middle of a story and it was expected that I'd be just fine there. It's actually because of this that it was really hard to summarize the story. Hence my basically non-existent summary above.

Maybe it was because I was in a hurry to read it, but I also felt like the story was a little rushed. I've read graphic novels before and I'm no expert, but 192 pages isn't enough to make the story feel like it it's not being thrown at you. If you think about it, when you read graphic novels, you're going to flip through those pages much faster so the author kind of needs to show us more or linger in certain parts of the story.

As for the plot, I wish there had been more to it before Nate and his friends finally confronted the "bad guy" who happened to be the very person I expected. Yup. About half way through or so I was like, oh, that person is the guy who's after the key. Then ta-da! It was a little disappointing. The whole ending and journey towards the antagonist was really bare-bones. It was literally the protagonist (and his friends) running towards the antagonist and only dodging their pursuers once. There really wasn't much to it and I think there could have been a lot more there that would have made things really interesting.

I liked The Lost Boy but it was a bit of a let-down.