Monday, May 2, 2011

Made For Each Other (a Young Adult Graphic Novel) by Paul Storrie (Book #2 in the My Boyfriend Is A Monster Series)

From Paul Storrie's Website:
"The My Boyfriend is a Monster line is a series of stand alone (interconnected only by the premise) graphic novels that are accessible to pretty much anyone, though they're aimed at tween girls most of all. As mentioned above, they're Action/Horror/Romance/Comedies. What's that mean? Well, think of Twilight by way of Shaun of the Dead. Yes, there's a bit of poking fun at the tropes of tween paranormal romance, but in an affectionate way.
Made for Each Other is Book 2 in the line (although, as mentioned above, the books stand alone storywise). It's a 124 pages of gorgeous black & white artwork on glossy paper. "

The Description:
Tom Stone stepped into Seward High and into Maria McBride's life like a bolt of lightning. He's the perfect guy for Maria—nice, smart, and well-built. There's just one problem: his family. Tom's father is the town's new funeral director, and business is booming. The bodies are piling up thick and fast in Persephone Falls, Alaska, so Dr. Stone keeps Tom up late at night working in the funeral home. And it's clear that Dr. Stone and his creepy assistant, Graves, don't want Maria around. Maria knows Tom was made for her. She's determined to find out what Dr. Stone has against her. When Tom refuses to stand up to his father, Maria begins to stitch together the clues...and finds out that the Stones are into recycling in ways she never could have imagined.

Review (Spoiler Alert!  I found it impossible to review this without giving away quite a bit of the plot): 
The story starts just after a car crash killed three popular cheerleaders, all named Erica (a sly nod to the movie "Heathers", and a great comment on the cookie-cutter nature of high school popularity).  This should appeal to the underdog mentality of most teens and tweens.  Basically, Made For Each Other is a fun and modern update on Mary Shelley's legendary Frankenstein.  In this graphic novel, Dr. Frankenstein's creation has escaped to Alaska, and resurfaces as a funeral home director.  His newly created son, Tom, has started school as a sophomore and soon meets up with the pretty Maria.  Maria, in her own way, is as much an outcast as Tom.  Her parents were killed in a car crash, she lives with her blind aunt, and is a member of the much maligned string quartet at her school.  So of course Tom and Maria embark on the path of young love, and she soon discovers Tom's secrets.  Both blossom as their relationship grows, but soon people start dying.  Clues to Tom's family and origins, combined with a dark sense of humor, and an increasing body count, create a fun read that highlights smart teenagers dealing with the horrors of high school.  All the elements of a great teen romance!

The writing was smart, the action moved along at a brisk pace, the main characters were strong and capable, adult interaction was minimal, and the illustrations were fantastic.  Two thumbs up!

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