Thursday, May 9, 2013

Rewiew: Anya's Ghost

Anya's Ghost by Vera Brosgol
When Anya decides to skip school, she never imagined she would find herself at the bottom of a well. She really didn't imagine that she would meet a ghost named Emily at the bottom of said well, either. To Anya's surprise, she finds that a bone from Emily's skeleton made it's way into her bag when she was rescued. Emily can only travel a small distance from her bones, but since Anya has one, Emily can follow her around. At first, Anya is annoyed and plans to ditch Emily and her bone ASAP. However, when Emily helps Anya pass a bio test, the idea of having Emily around suddenly becomes more appealing.

Anya and Emily become close. So close that Anya doesn't seem to want to hang out with her living friends anymore. Emily seems like a great ghost friend at first: she encourages Anya to be nice to Dima, another Russian immigrant in her school who is bullied, helps Anya in school, and is also dedicated to helping Anya snag the man of her dreams. Then the not so nice side of Emily comes out.

When Anya finds out that the man of her dreams is a complete jerk, Emily is still obsessed with the idea of Anya going out with him. What's worse is that Emily claimed that she was murdered, but with a little research (at her local library!) Anya finds out that Emily was actually the murderer. That, for some strange reason, puts Anya off, and she again resolves to ditch Emily's bone in the well. Emily on the other hand does not want that to happen. To stop Anya from leaving her to her lonesome in a well for another 90 years, Emily starts to threaten Anya by doing terrible things to her family.

And they all die.

Kidding!!! Well, Emily is already dead, but that's a minor detail. Anya's Ghost was my first graphic novel. And at this point you are wondering how I can aim to be a young adult librarian and have only read one graphic novel. After reading this one, I will definitely be reading more. I had fun reading this book. It was dark, but still humorous. I really enjoyed the illustrations and was amazed at how 3 or 4 panels with no text could set the tone so effectively. Anya was just as an annoying high school girl should be, and Emily's sweetly manipulative character reminded me a bit of Regina George from "Mean Girls." I'm a little sad that Vera Brosgol has not written any other graphic novels, but I will definitely check out more graphic novels in the near future and exploring different authors.
Suggestions are greatly appreciated!

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