Mouse Guard: Autumn 1152
tells the story of three mice, Liem, Kenzie, and Saxon, members of the Mouse Guard. While on a mission to find a
missing grain merchant, they come across evidence of betrayal. The three travel back to the capital to warn Gwendolyn, the matriarch of the guard. On the way the three will encounter legendary warriors, and face dangerous traitors before they hope to save the city of Lockhaven.
As someone that reads more fiction than comics, when reading a graphic novel I mainly look for a good story. The art is very secondary, and I often don't pay as much attention to it as I should. This was not the case with Mouse Guard. I couldn't help but notice how different it was from everything else I've seen in comics. These differences start with the unique shape of the book, and extend to the artwork inside. Petersen's illustrations of the mice are more similar to what I've seen in picture books than in comic books. The fact that a lot of the story is told in pictures without much dialogue, puts even more emphasis on the artwork. Another thing that impressed me about the art was the fact that it improved from issue to issue, meaning it was even more beautiful and detailed by the end than it was in the beginning.
The story draws heavily from high fantasy, making me recall the Redwall Series, which I was obsessed with in middle school. This gave the comic a bit of a nostalgic spin (and made me itch to pick up Mariel of Redwall
again). One thing I really liked about the three main characters is the fact that they had three distinct personalities, despite the fact that so little time was spent on dialogue. The only thing that disappointed me a bit was the pacing of the book. I felt that more time should have been spent focusing on characters (especially the secondary ones) and world building. Things are fine the way they are, but I couldn't help but wish I had gotten a little more time to get to know the characters before the action kicked in. This was the most obvious with the “traitor” character. Because so little time was spent on developing the character, when the reveal occurred, I felt it didn't impact me as much as it should.Mouse Guard
is a unique graphic novel filled with an exciting fantasy plot and beautiful artwork. I'm glad I picked up this volume, and plan on picking up the second one (Mouse Guard: Winter 1152
) when it's released in paperback.
Rating: four stars
Length: 200 pages
Source: Barns and Noble
Challenge: This book is not part of any challenges
Similar Books: The Redwall Series by Brian Jacques, Poppy
by AVI, Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH
by Robert C O'Brien, Fire Bringer
by David Clement-Davies and Watership Down
by Douglas Adams,.
Other books I've read by this author: this is my first.
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