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The Girl Who Owned a City: The Graphic Novel

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A DEADLY VIRUS KILLED EVERY ADULT ON EARTH, LEAVING ONLY US KIDS BEHIND. My parents are gone, so I'm responsible for my little brother Todd. I have to make sure we stay alive. Many kids are sick or starving, and fierce gangs are stealing and destroying everything they find. Lots of people have given up, but here on Grand Avenue, some of us are surviving, because of me.


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A DEADLY VIRUS KILLED EVERY ADULT ON EARTH, LEAVING ONLY US KIDS BEHIND. My parents are gone, so I'm responsible for my little brother Todd. I have to make sure we stay alive. Many kids are sick or starving, and fierce gangs are stealing and destroying everything they find. Lots of people have given up, but here on Grand Avenue, some of us are surviving, because of me.

30 review for The Girl Who Owned a City: The Graphic Novel

  1. 5 out of 5

    Sara

    I was actually really impressed by this. A good friend of mine LOVES the original novel, but I had never had a chance to read it. When the graphic novel version came across the new book shelf at the library, I swiped it and checked it out immediately. It's a pretty standard dystopian story (one that seems to be repeated a lot as of late, but let us remember, this one came first) -- everyone over the age of 12 is dead, and the kids have to take over. What I really liked about this is that it read I was actually really impressed by this. A good friend of mine LOVES the original novel, but I had never had a chance to read it. When the graphic novel version came across the new book shelf at the library, I swiped it and checked it out immediately. It's a pretty standard dystopian story (one that seems to be repeated a lot as of late, but let us remember, this one came first) -- everyone over the age of 12 is dead, and the kids have to take over. What I really liked about this is that it read a lot like a graphic novel version of the TV show "The Colony". Which is to say that it's not an action/adventure story, but rather an exploration of how society could possibly re-organize itself after a catastrophic event. I also thought it was cool that the main character and the leader was a girl! And she was a totally bad ass girl with real feelings and doubts and leadership skills! Also also, the art is FANTASTIC. I LOVE this art. Why don't more graphic novels have this kind of art? The people are stylized and interesting and expressive, and it's aaall in color. Every picture is beautiful and striking, and it's one of the few graphic novels I've read where I've spent just as much time looking at the art as reading the words (if you look closely enough, there's a little girl picking her nose in one of the frames, tee hee). I'll have to go back and read the original to see how it compares, but I thought this was a remarkably well done graphic novel. If I ever get a chance to book talk to middle schoolers, I'll definitely use this one.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Claire

    Am I paranoid, or is this an extended allegory about the virtues of neoliberal bootstrapping? Either way, it's crazy didactic, the protagonist is annoyingly self-righteous, and the art, world-building, and dialogue-as-exposition are all pretty generic. Also, how can you have a dystopian graphic novel that shows practically none of the larger landscape in the art? If this world is so horrifying, I want to see it!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    So I am looking through the youth graphic novels at the local library (because this is where they keep adorable fairy tale books with morals and stunning visuals and Don't Judge Me, Okay)when suddenly I find myself looking at a girl with a rifle over a burning house and I have three separate thoughts. 1. This is totally B.A. with a BOLD B 2. This must have been shelved improperly and, upon seeing that there was in fact a "Y" shelving tag for Youth GN 3. What in the Hell, Library? I don't think you should have this n So I am looking through the youth graphic novels at the local library (because this is where they keep adorable fairy tale books with morals and stunning visuals and Don't Judge Me, Okay)when suddenly I find myself looking at a girl with a rifle over a burning house and I have three separate thoughts. 1. This is totally B.A. with a BOLD B 2. This must have been shelved improperly and, upon seeing that there was in fact a "Y" shelving tag for Youth GN 3. What in the Hell, Library? I don't think you should have this next to your illustrated Cinderella and Various Talking Animal tales! But it was so. And, to be honest, the book's cover does not much merit it being the badass tale I thought it would be. I understand it is based on a book, and I might endeavor to read it, but the story simply went off too quickly, without time for explanations or considerations, to be of much use as a graphic novel. Main plot: an epidemic kills off everyone that is older than 12 years old for some reason, and obviously due to this society falls apart. The dead people are apparently turned into dust as a couple quick lines between characters suggest. This eliminates any views of dead bodies...so, not very much gore or scary elements to be had. The main problem comes in that children are not very adept to find themselves food (GOOD, nutritious food) and are therefore shortly starving to death. Into this picture comes our heroine, Lisa, who has the Idea and the Great Mind to make a society to keep everyone safe from harm and their bellies full. Great. Except it's kind of not, you know, because she needs to work everyone to the bone to build her city, as she keeps referring to it, because she is so Brilliant and everyone else is so Lazy and goddammit guys can't you do anything right without her? Because the Great and Powerful Lisa does not share her food and supplies with people who haven't "earned" it. She "thought" about how to get these things, and they didn't so why should this ever-so-smart (read:self-obsessed) 10-year old share her overwhelming amount of goods? Nope, these kids gotta pay. Even the ones who are older than her bow down. So, whatever. They build her society to stay safe from wandering thuggy gangs (might I mention that the story takes place in the suburbs of Chicago...and if that's supposed to be some commentary on gangs...smdh). Anyway, the city gets ruined thanks to aforementioned gangs and Lisa and her ultraloyal minions decide to make a new community inside an abandoned high school. Shit goes down. People get pissy. Lisa needs everything her way, and she makes battlements that involve attack dogs (view spoiler)[who get fucking killed and none of these kids care what the fuck (hide spoiler)] , the welding of metal to windows to protect them from projectiles(view spoiler)[because these gangs of not-even-teenagers have Molotov cocktails, just because of course they do (hide spoiler)] and even vats of oil (view spoiler)[to dump, boiling hot, on faces of people trying to get into their building. Kids these days! Turns 11 year old Tom (or whatever his name was, I don't care) into a goddamn Harvey Dent impersonator) (hide spoiler)] . So you just forget those old, antiquated schoolyard antics! So yeah, basically, what the Fresh Hell. As far as artistically, the style is suitable for a gritty apocalyptic story. Unfortunately, the story isn't as gritty or apocalyptic as it should actually be. I don't see anything dead, I don't see anyone hurt except the main bad guy (who need I remind readers is still a CHILD, since everyone under the age of 12 is dead and dust-ified). But the plot is so biased that these kids (even the littlest ones) need to WORK for what is owed them. I understand trying to promote the values of earning something for yourself versus stealing...but this graphic novel (and quite possibly the book its based on) keeps hammering on about how it's the people with Great Minds who run things and everyone else needs to get in line to prove themselves worthy instead of living off of others, that the whole thing reads like some Ayn Rand mindfuck for children.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Brigid ✩

    Got an ARC from NetGalley. Expected publication is in April 2012. So, after I finished reading this, I saw on the last page that it had been based on a novel from 1975. I have not read the novel or ever heard of it, so I don't know what the similarities and differences between the original and graphic novels are. Whether the flaws in the graphic novel are in any way the fault of O.T. Nelson––the original author––I don't know. Anyway, to briefly summarize the plot: The Girl Who Owned a City/>The Got an ARC from NetGalley. Expected publication is in April 2012. So, after I finished reading this, I saw on the last page that it had been based on a novel from 1975. I have not read the novel or ever heard of it, so I don't know what the similarities and differences between the original and graphic novels are. Whether the flaws in the graphic novel are in any way the fault of O.T. Nelson––the original author––I don't know. Anyway, to briefly summarize the plot: The Girl Who Owned a City is the story of a grim, futuristic world in which a mysterious virus kills all the adults and turns them into piles of dust. Our protagonist is a girl named Lisa Nelson who is determined to find and protect as many surviving children as she can. But she is rivaled by another gang, led by a boy named Tom Logan who wants to steal her power and form some kind of dictatorship over all the other kids. I obtained a digital version of this book via NetGalley, which is like my new best friend in website form. After I downloaded it I decided to look through it––so of course, I ended up reading the entire thing in one sitting. This is an exciting and fast-paced read, and it's fairly short. So, it's something I would recommend if you were looking for something quick and fun. And what with the current dystopian craze, I could see this being a successful graphic novel. Lisa is a likable main character, although I'm not sure how realistically she's portrayed. I don't think her age is ever defined, but supposedly she's younger than 12. (Otherwise, she would be a pile of dust.) I spent the whole book assuming she was around 14 or 15, because she seemed to be acting a little more like a teenager. Then, of course, I realized that wasn't possible. Granted, she seems to have gone through a lot so I wouldn't be surprised if she'd matured early. But regardless of her age, Lisa is easy to relate to. The reader can feel her stress and frustration as she tries to keep everything together and keep everyone safe. However, I thought the other characters could have been fleshed out more. At least the relationship between Lisa and her little brother Todd was pretty nicely done, and Lisa's friend Craig was also somewhat interesting. But in the short span of the book, I didn't feel like I quite knew most of the characters. Most of them just seemed to be there to be Lisa's little helpers and not to have personalities of their own. As for the plot ... It's not the most original thing in the world. Basically, this book is Lord of the Flies, Gone, and Maximum Ride combined. Once you've read Lord of the Flies, you've pretty much read all the books with the "Oh no! All the adults are gone!" plot, so you can probably already guess what this book is like. As for the similarities to Gone (by Michael Grant), it has the same premise where all the adults conveniently just "disappear" and there is only a vague explanation as to why. (More on that in a minute.) I guess I'm kind of stretching it with the comparison to Maximum Ride, but the whole time I was reading this, I kept thinking that Lisa is pretty much the same character as Max. She has the same tough-girl attitude where she doesn't want anyone to help her, and she wants to handle everything by herself, etc. And it didn't help that Craig kind of has a Fang-ish attitude with his whole "Let's just forget everyone else and live by ourselves!" attitude. Anyway, as I was saying, I have the same issue with this book as I had with Gone by Michael Grant: the reason for the adults disappearing makes little sense to me. I believe that in Gone, the author blamed it on a nuclear chemical spill or something strange like that. In The Girl Who Owned a City, this is the only explanation the author makes: "for some strange reason, the sickness is not fatal to children." You know, for once I would like to see one of these "post-apocalyptic-worlds-where-there-are-only-children-left" books where there is actually a believable explanation as to why all the adults are gone. Not only that, but it would make more sense if the adults didn't just "vanish." It would make more sense if it was like the Black Plague all over again, with rotting corpses all over the place. Disgusting? Well, yes. But far more realistic. I can't bring myself to believe that there would ever be a disease that would literally just turn people into dust. The originality and lack-of-explanation issues aside, I think my biggest problem with this book was the lack of emotional reactions in the characters. At the beginning, Lisa informs us that it's only been a few weeks since the plague killed all the adults. Yet, none of the kids seem extremely upset. They all focus solely on surviving and don't seem to remember anything that happened before they were left by themselves. You don't have little kids crying for their parents all over the place. I can't recall any point where Lisa and Todd had a conversation about their mom and dad. It was like the author was so focused on making the story "kickass" that he completely ignored the realistic, emotional impact of the story. I understand if the kids are in shock or in denial or something, but at least a little more effort could have been made. I mean, in such a horrible situation, I really wanted to know how the characters felt. How on earth would it feel to see your own parents turn into dust? Because I'm pretty sure it would be devastating. I swear I'm almost done ranting now. There's only one more thing I have to criticize, and that's the ending. Well, of course if you're going to read the book, don't read the spoiler. Just know that, it's a total cop-out, in my humble opinion. (view spoiler)[So, there's a point where Tom Logan shoots Lisa in the arm and then just leaves her there. Her friends come and rescue her and take her somewhere else to get better. Then one of Lisa's friends goes back to Tom and is like, "So, I took Lisa somewhere else and she died." And just like that, he's like, "Oh, okay." So of course Lisa and her friends sneak into the school where all of Tom's gang lives and whatnot. And of course Lisa gets caught, and Tom has her tied to a chair (for ... who knows what reason). Instead of killing her, he just lectures her about how pathetic she is. And in return she's like, "Well, you're the pathetic one! You have no friends! I feel sorry for you!" And ... he walks away. He just takes his gang and they all leave. THE END. Ummm. (hide spoiler)] So, in conclusion, I think this book had some potential in its premise, but there were a lot of issues with its execution. However, I still found it enjoyable. It was an easy, fun read and something that could keep you entertained for an hour or two. Even though the characters aren't totally fleshed-out, at least they're likable. And if all else fails, the illustrations are pretty cool.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Dov Zeller

    Eek. I don't remember how I came across this book. It's an adaptation of a novel first published in 1975. The wiki page about it has some interesting details. Apparently it's Wilson's only book. And the book takes place in a fictionalized version of his home town. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Gir... It's possible I got this one out of the library because I was looking forward to reading a comic book with a fierce female protagonist. What I got instead was a protagonist who believes in an absurd and faulty "merit based" sy Eek. I don't remember how I came across this book. It's an adaptation of a novel first published in 1975. The wiki page about it has some interesting details. Apparently it's Wilson's only book. And the book takes place in a fictionalized version of his home town. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Gir... It's possible I got this one out of the library because I was looking forward to reading a comic book with a fierce female protagonist. What I got instead was a protagonist who believes in an absurd and faulty "merit based" system in which the "smartest" and most "resourceful" deserve to have power over everyone else. Or, as GR reviewer Fran so wonderfully puts it: "If Ayn Rand rewrote Buffy the Vampire Slayer as a post-apocalyptic plague story, it would read something like this." https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/9... There's a touch of Lord of the Flies to it, too, I suppose. I found the book to be pretty cringe-worthy most of the way through. I know that a character can be problematic and it can have nothing to do with the author's ideology, but this book seemed to espouse the protagonist's ideology in a way that was pretty worrisome to me. And, more than that, the characters weren't complex enough to draw me into their world, and it wasn't, in my experience, a richly told tale.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Fran

    If Ayn Rand rewrote Buffy the Vampire Slayer as a post-apocalyptic plague story, it would read something like this. I feel as thought I would have loved this if I had read it as a pre-teen, but as an adult, Lisa comes off more arrogant (and annoying) than worldly. Lisa is in dire need of some Scoobies to remind her of the importance of working together, trusting others, and to get over her own specialness.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Aubrey Byron

    Wow. What a trash heap. This is a graphic adaptation of a novel I read in middle school. What I remembered fondly was a post-apocalyptic, bad ass 11 year old girl taking charge and kicking ass. What I found upon reread was a carefully shoehorned, children’s Field guide for Libertarian philosophy and narcissism. A sudden outbreak of a new, deadly plague takes out all the adults on the planet. The oldest living people left are 12 years old. With only children, food is scarce and street Wow. What a trash heap. This is a graphic adaptation of a novel I read in middle school. What I remembered fondly was a post-apocalyptic, bad ass 11 year old girl taking charge and kicking ass. What I found upon reread was a carefully shoehorned, children’s Field guide for Libertarian philosophy and narcissism. A sudden outbreak of a new, deadly plague takes out all the adults on the planet. The oldest living people left are 12 years old. With only children, food is scarce and street gangs form. Our VERY clever heroine happens to be smarter than the other kids and knows where to find food. She stockpiles all she can get her hands on and when asked why they can’t share by her younger brother, she simply explains she deserves it, because she is so smart. Baby Ayn Rand then does decide to recruit other kids to do her bidding and builds a city in a school. She emphasizes how much happier everyone is when they have a job. After a division of labor and functional society is created, she makes sure to tell anyone who listens that it is her city, no one else’s. Once again when faced with starving kids they could easily help, they resort to militia tactics and medieval torture. “Freedom is more important than sharing,” as Lisa would say. Crazy how I didn’t remember what a subliminal, little manifesto this was. What’s even better is remembering I was taught this in school.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Raina

    So, apparently if women owned cities they would turn into benevolent dictators. Sorry, couldn't resist. I think I'm officially turning into a GN snob. A really great friend and librarian colleague of mine recently read this and loved it. I just kept seeing the flaws. I get that this came first. That it's a dystopian tale about all the adults dying and the kids having to figure out how to survive and it stars a GIRL and the original book came out in 1975. I totall So, apparently if women owned cities they would turn into benevolent dictators. Sorry, couldn't resist. I think I'm officially turning into a GN snob. A really great friend and librarian colleague of mine recently read this and loved it. I just kept seeing the flaws. I get that this came first. That it's a dystopian tale about all the adults dying and the kids having to figure out how to survive and it stars a GIRL and the original book came out in 1975. I totally like the feel of the art. And THE COLORING is freaking awesome. MAJOR props to Jenn Manley Lee. But here are my complaints... 1. Sizeism. Granted, food is hard to come by when society is falling down around your ears. But all of the major characters are thin and attractive. Also pretty darn diverse for Illinois. 2. Publishing quality. My quality had several pages slightly out of focus. Hate that. 3. Nit-picky Panel-level storytelling. There was one specific panel where I stopped and just couldn't believe that experienced graphic novelists had packed that much of an important speech at a pivotal moment into one tiny panel in the corner of a page (pg 16, bottom right). Take some time. Let her get a panel for each sentence. Using several panels spaces out how much time it's taking for the character to say the lines (some tips might be taken from Jason Shiga). Don't make us think about how much of a speech you're putting in one panel in the first place. Also, images are recycled, which always bugs me when I notice it (pg 119). Oh yeah, and the lettering isn't hand-drawn. Which bugs me. 4. Didacticism. Granted this came out in 1975, but I felt like it was screaming for an adult to ask the kid "Do you think that the heroine was right or wrong to do what she did and claim what she claimed?" I wanted some subplots to distract from the agenda. 5. Violence. Granted, I'm extrasensitive to anything that involves dogs, but I didn't like that the dogs were merely one more weapon and were trained to be vicious. Also, zero thought or attention was paid to how violent some of the kids defense methods were - guns galore, boiling oil, explosives... Violence doesn't normally bother me (I LOVE the Gone series by Michael Grant, for example), but in a book that felt so "message-y" I wanted there to be at least a nod to how violent the world became. Maybe it's in the prose. Honestly, I was shocked that the creators had the GN cred they did when I read their bios at the end. It felt like a project that was a publishers idea, in a bad way. A mostly successful one, but one that didn't quite hit it for me.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Tracy (Cornerfolds)

    Read more of my reviews at Cornerfolds.com! I found The Girl Who Owned a City while searching for one more book to complete this year's graphic novel challenge. I was looking for a dystopian story and this one grabbed my attention with its amazing cover! Unfortunately, what was inside wasn't as good as I'd hoped. The Girl Who Owned a City takes place in a world that has recently lost all of its adults. The children are left behind to fend for themselves and Lisa is no different. She and her b Read more of my reviews at Cornerfolds.com! I found The Girl Who Owned a City while searching for one more book to complete this year's graphic novel challenge. I was looking for a dystopian story and this one grabbed my attention with its amazing cover! Unfortunately, what was inside wasn't as good as I'd hoped. The Girl Who Owned a City takes place in a world that has recently lost all of its adults. The children are left behind to fend for themselves and Lisa is no different. She and her brothers are fighting to defend their home and supplies, but gangs are popping up all over and Lisa knows she has to do something to keep them safe. Characters are really the most important part of a book for me. Although I like my books to be plot driven, the characters have to be sympathetic and relatable. Lisa is neither of those. For whatever reason she decides to take the formation of "her" city into her own hands, failing to accept input from her friends and ignoring them when they voice valid concerns. Even once she takes control of "her" city and proclaims its citizens are her responsibility, she continually throws herself into harm's way at the expense of her people. The villain of the story is also ridiculously simplistic and wishy washy. This book is kind of a mess. I guess it's based on a 1975 young adult novel and maybe that's better, but I just could not get into the story. It's choppy and quick and nothing is explained. Lisa goes from trying to defend a street to running a city/fortress inside of a school. Things happen too quickly, which I guess may be due to the graphic novel format. Then again, I've read many graphic novels that were much better written than this. I also hated that the epidemic itself, the one that wiped out everyone over a certain age (12, I think?) is never delved into. Why did the adults die? How did they die? Is this a worldwide epidemic or is it confined to Lisa's town/state/coast? What is even going on in this world?? As a lover of dystopian fiction, my favorite books are always the ones who build complex worlds that are at least somewhat believable as a potential future. I didn't go into The Girl Who Owned a City with any expectations, but of course I did hope to enjoy it. Sadly, it was too rushed with characters and a world that were very much lacking in development. The art was pretty for sure, but that may be the only thing I liked about it. Actual rating: 1.5 stars

  10. 4 out of 5

    Karissa

    I got an eGalley of this graphic novel though NetGalley(dot)com. I have never read the original work by O.T. Nelson so I can't compare to that. This was a very entertaining read though; the art was well done and I really enjoyed it. Something horrible happened and everyone over the age of twelve died and turned into dust. Now the kids are left to survive on their own. Lisa decides to claim a building as her own and build a city for kids to come and shelter at. She organizes the city and gets it I got an eGalley of this graphic novel though NetGalley(dot)com. I have never read the original work by O.T. Nelson so I can't compare to that. This was a very entertaining read though; the art was well done and I really enjoyed it. Something horrible happened and everyone over the age of twelve died and turned into dust. Now the kids are left to survive on their own. Lisa decides to claim a building as her own and build a city for kids to come and shelter at. She organizes the city and gets it running to provide food, protection, and shelter for all of the kids that dwell there. When a opposing faction from the city comes and tries to take over Lisa's city, Lisa and her kids find themselves in a lot of trouble. The art throughout this story is very well done. The art is easy to follow, done in beautiful full color and matches the tone of the story well. I thought the story itself was a bit un-realistic and unbelievable. Especially the way Lisa resolves the competition between her city and the opposing army; I thought this was anti-climatic and unrealistic. The idea of a world where only kids survive is an interesting one though and being that it is kids trying to deal with all of this some of the immature decisions the characters make ends up making more sense than you would think. Lisa is a complicated character; she does some good and some bad. She is trying hard to help the kids survive but the fact that she wants her city to be a sort of dictatorship really makes you stop and think. The side characters are all fairly interesting as well; I was surprised at the depth of the story and at how many different societal and survival issues it tackles. Overall this was a very entertaining reading. The illustration and art throughout the story is detailed, colorlful, and beautiful...I really enjoyed it. The story itself has more depth than you would expect and tackles some interesting societal and survival issues. I had some trouble swallowing parts of the plot though; certain parts were just too unbelievable and too unrealistic. The part of the book where Lisa and the enemy army finally resolve their conflict delivered an interesting message but felt completely contrived to me. This book is appropriate for young adult and older. I recommend it for readers who enjoy post-apocalyptic fiction with a touch of a dystopian feel to it.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Dannielle

    Dannielle Nebinski (the Girl Who Owned a City) Genre: Graphic Novel Lisa Nelson is a 10 year old girl, who along with her little brother Todd, are trying to survive in a Chicago suburb after a deadly virus Killed everyone in the world over the age of 12. They survive by looting abandoned houses and shops. With chaos and sickness ensuing, Lisa must protect Todd and make sure that both stay alive. While kids have given up and are dying, those who live in Lisa's neighborhood are sur Dannielle Nebinski (the Girl Who Owned a City) Genre: Graphic Novel Lisa Nelson is a 10 year old girl, who along with her little brother Todd, are trying to survive in a Chicago suburb after a deadly virus Killed everyone in the world over the age of 12. They survive by looting abandoned houses and shops. With chaos and sickness ensuing, Lisa must protect Todd and make sure that both stay alive. While kids have given up and are dying, those who live in Lisa's neighborhood are surviving, because of Lisa. But, while Lisa is busy protecting and saving the children in her neighborhood, Tom Logan and his gang are determined to change the role that Lisa plays as their leader. So now it is up to her to find a safe place to live and rebuild society, before she loses the fight with Tom and his gang. Overall I enjoyed the book and found it to be very appropriate for the younger spectrum of the young adult genre. While some of the characters lacked depth, the storyline itself made it easier to get through. There were also missing details, such as the origin of the virus, that I would have liked to have known more about, but these missing details weren't enough to deter me from reading on.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Lesa Divine

    I actually enjoyed this. The pictures fabulous work of art. The story nicely done. With kids just trying to survive on their own. But of course others go want what you work so hard to get in order for them to survive but Lisa the leader wouldn't give up on the kids. They depended on her a lot. Nice

  13. 5 out of 5

    Araceli Morales

    The art style was very cool and I liked the whole concept of this graphic novel but it went by way too fast I would have liked a lot more depth in plot and a longer graphic novel but overall fun read for the first of my booktubeathon reads!

  14. 4 out of 5

    Derek

    Today I finished the book it had a plot twist and the end

  15. 4 out of 5

    Angela

    I liked how badass she was, but there was really no plot. :/

  16. 4 out of 5

    Josephine (biblioseph)

    I've just read a review (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...) that mentions liberatian views being fed throughout the original book, I just didn't enjoy it much to begin with. I did like it over all, and the art is stand out in the graphic novel adaptation (no real surprise, it's Joelle Jones) but I wouldn't recommend this to anyone. If you like Joelle, go read Catwoman!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Hannah

    Loved the art but didn't love the story. Feels so immature, especially with an extremely unlikable main character.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Sofia Ekvall

    nothing special

  19. 4 out of 5

    Suresh

    This novel has unbelievably great artwork, the details are quite stunning with the use of shadows eye-catching. Good foundation for a storyline. I wasn't sure where the author was taking me, down a violent or non violent road. In the end, the storyline was a bit disappointing but the artwork from the graphic novel version of this original novel made up for this.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Ms. Yingling

    After a virus kills all of the adults in the world, Lisa and her younger brother Todd are trying to survive. Lisa has found supplies and travels around in a car to find more, but other children have turned to marauding hordes and are terrorizing the weaker children. Lisa gathers everyone in her neighborhood, and soon they have a thriving community-- until a gang burns it to the ground. The group then takes over a local high school and fortify it. When things start to go well, Lisa gathers more c After a virus kills all of the adults in the world, Lisa and her younger brother Todd are trying to survive. Lisa has found supplies and travels around in a car to find more, but other children have turned to marauding hordes and are terrorizing the weaker children. Lisa gathers everyone in her neighborhood, and soon they have a thriving community-- until a gang burns it to the ground. The group then takes over a local high school and fortify it. When things start to go well, Lisa gathers more children, gives them all jobs, and generally keeps a tight hold on things. One small error is all it takes, though, and after she is shot by a rival gang, the entire city is in jeopardy. She recovers, but is then kidnapped by the gang, and manages to escape by sheer force of personality in standing up to its leader. Strengths: One of the original dystopian books for middle school students, and not a bad one. The graphic novel version will be gobbled up avidly; the illustrations are very nicely dark and New Millenium, even though there are some nice shout outs to the original publication date in the architecture and cars. Weaknesses: Like any graphic novel, there is a ton of information missing. What I really think: I need to reread the novel; clearly, I read this in middle school, because I had an elaborate fantasy where I was in charge of a community at my own school. I got to live in the principal's office. Interestingly, there was still electricity in my fantasy, and the school was right across from a shopping mall, so supplies were not an issue. And there were no evil marauding hordes. I hadn't realized how much my own daydreams had been influenced by this book!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Doc

    Based on the book of the same name by Author O. T. Nelson this book has scenes of violence, limited gore, and a glimpse of the apocalypse as a deadly virus specifically targets all the adults in the world leaving the children to fend for themselves. The character artwork seems to fluctuate a bit to me but I didn't mind altogether being able to enjoy the story and the character never change so much as to make them unrecognizable. The story follows the life of 10 year old Lisa Nelson wh Based on the book of the same name by Author O. T. Nelson this book has scenes of violence, limited gore, and a glimpse of the apocalypse as a deadly virus specifically targets all the adults in the world leaving the children to fend for themselves. The character artwork seems to fluctuate a bit to me but I didn't mind altogether being able to enjoy the story and the character never change so much as to make them unrecognizable. The story follows the life of 10 year old Lisa Nelson who originally is trying to keep her little brother Todd safe but ends up helping others as she learns the hardships and joys of building a community in a world where lawlessness is the rule of the land and you can only survive through smarts or brutality. If you don't mind a story where children fight and attempt to survive you might like to try this interesting story that was originally told in 1975. It definitely has potential for more books in the series if the author ever considers doing another book or if the fan community wants to continue the story through fan fiction. :) My favorite part of the book would have to be when all the modifications to the newly dubbed Grandville was completed and everyone let their guards down to relax and celebrate just to come back to a burning husk. It sets the dark mood of the book perfectly as Lisa stands in the foreground of the burning building and must find a new place for her wards to survive. Welcome to the end of times. There is going to be a fight and you are invited.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Nam

    eThis book is about a girl named Lisa Nelson who was twelve years old. She had a little brother named Todd but they lost their family. They lived in a neighborhood that has a deadly virus that killed every adult on earth, leaving only children behind. Lisa also has many friends but she also has a strong enemy named the Chidester Gang, they were mean and cruel they liked to steal other people supplies and hurt other children. So Lisa, Todd, and her friends join together and help feed together and eThis book is about a girl named Lisa Nelson who was twelve years old. She had a little brother named Todd but they lost their family. They lived in a neighborhood that has a deadly virus that killed every adult on earth, leaving only children behind. Lisa also has many friends but she also has a strong enemy named the Chidester Gang, they were mean and cruel they liked to steal other people supplies and hurt other children. So Lisa, Todd, and her friends join together and help feed together and fight the Chidester Gang. But the Gang burned all the houses so she wanted to take back. But still her planned didn't work, the Gang had her second house and now hurt the people that Lisa, Todd, and her friends help. So she decided to go to the Gang and get her city back with her OWN WORDS. And she did it, she saved everyone. The question I still have are: How did the Deadly virus spread? Where did it come from? I really liked this book because this book shows that you don't need parents to take care of you, kids can do it buy ours selfs, help other people, how to survive and help feed other people. The most important thing from this book is to be helpful,to find your own way to solve the problem and how to survive.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Dan

    Wonderfully drawn post-apocalyptic tale. I had no idea it was adapted from a J/YA novel from the 70s. My quibble with it is philosophic: the main character says the newly formed city established in the abandoned school is "her city." That she "owns" it. It's dictatorial thinking and makes the character seem less noble, though that's not the intention: "L'etat, c'est moi!" My understanding is that no society can be formed without shared consent. You can start off with like-minded folks Wonderfully drawn post-apocalyptic tale. I had no idea it was adapted from a J/YA novel from the 70s. My quibble with it is philosophic: the main character says the newly formed city established in the abandoned school is "her city." That she "owns" it. It's dictatorial thinking and makes the character seem less noble, though that's not the intention: "L'etat, c'est moi!" My understanding is that no society can be formed without shared consent. You can start off with like-minded folks with the sense of initiative and drive to pull it all together and rope in the equivocators. Just because the main character (I'm writing this late and the book isn't near me, but if you read it...) has the wits to pull the survivors together, does not rule out the need for the talents and mind-set of the others to help get the other children to organize. What I do like about how the story is structured is that a society can only come together when the heavy-lifting is being done; barbarism is born of a lack of imagination and self-discipline--but for all that, it may not be a guarantee against greater odds, and a better armed and outfitted opponent. Civilization is a frail dream that can break easily.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

    Like between a 2 and a half and 3. It wasn't bad, it's okay. The premise is good, an epidemic breaks out and all the adults get sick and die and their children are left to fend for themselves, survive, and create a new society for them. This graphic novel is the adaptation of the novel by the same name. The illustrations are good, I really liked the artwork. The story was good but at times too slow or very all of sudden this happening. Overall I enjoyed it, what worked was the idea and the fact Like between a 2 and a half and 3. It wasn't bad, it's okay. The premise is good, an epidemic breaks out and all the adults get sick and die and their children are left to fend for themselves, survive, and create a new society for them. This graphic novel is the adaptation of the novel by the same name. The illustrations are good, I really liked the artwork. The story was good but at times too slow or very all of sudden this happening. Overall I enjoyed it, what worked was the idea and the fact that the "hero" is a young girl. I am curious if the book does a better job with the premise or if the idea is good but not the execution or if it exactly the same. If anyone knows of books with the same kind of idea but maybe a bit better, let me know. I'd like to read more books that are similar in thought in which the main character is a young girl who sort of saves the day for lack of a better phrase.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Kevin

    I found this on the shelf of a local comic shop and, despite having never heard of it or the source novel published something like 40 years ago, the premise grabbed me. A virus wipes out everyone over the age of 12 leaving kids to fend for themselves. It's a little bit The Lord of the Flies meets a zombie-less The Walking Dead (think the arcs with the Governor and Negan). Lisa Nelson and her younger brother Todd are two such parentally abandoned kids who decide to use their smarts to survive in I found this on the shelf of a local comic shop and, despite having never heard of it or the source novel published something like 40 years ago, the premise grabbed me. A virus wipes out everyone over the age of 12 leaving kids to fend for themselves. It's a little bit The Lord of the Flies meets a zombie-less The Walking Dead (think the arcs with the Governor and Negan). Lisa Nelson and her younger brother Todd are two such parentally abandoned kids who decide to use their smarts to survive in Glen Ellyn, IL, against gangs of other kids who steal and intimidate to survive. It's a very interesting and timeless story brought to life by the art of Joëlle Jones and Jenn Manley Lee. Check it out.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Beth

    I'm on the lookout for middle school appropriate graphic novels that can appeal to any gender/sex. Though the pacing seemed too quick at times, the designs are amazing. I can always appreciate a female lead too, although the minority characters were often left undeveloped and in the background. This had a serious Walking Dead vibe to it, but without the zombies and gore. I was surprised to find that it's based on a booked originally published in 1977, so it definitely was created before the Hung I'm on the lookout for middle school appropriate graphic novels that can appeal to any gender/sex. Though the pacing seemed too quick at times, the designs are amazing. I can always appreciate a female lead too, although the minority characters were often left undeveloped and in the background. This had a serious Walking Dead vibe to it, but without the zombies and gore. I was surprised to find that it's based on a booked originally published in 1977, so it definitely was created before the Hunger Games/Walking Dead craze begun. Overall it was a quick read, easy to digest, but still had some scenarios and moments that I think could foster some good thought-provoking conversations with the late elementary/early middle school age bracket.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This book was described to me as thinly veiled Ann Rynd propaganda and that is exactly what it seems to be. I liked Lisa as a potential character but her fanatical selfishness, especially in light of a scene near the end where she lectures another character on their moral flaws until they give up, were just impossible to take seriously. She is essentially an authoritarian dictator who hates other authoritarian dictators. The only reason I gave this book two stars was because the art was quite go This book was described to me as thinly veiled Ann Rynd propaganda and that is exactly what it seems to be. I liked Lisa as a potential character but her fanatical selfishness, especially in light of a scene near the end where she lectures another character on their moral flaws until they give up, were just impossible to take seriously. She is essentially an authoritarian dictator who hates other authoritarian dictators. The only reason I gave this book two stars was because the art was quite good. Really. Especially for an adaptation, its 4 stars of art and 1 star worth of story.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Allie

    This is... weird. This came across my desk as a damaged item, so I read it before discarding it. There's a lot of unpleasant conservative ideology. And also some weird racialized language, and I'm not sure if that is from the original novel or a combination of text and the visual aspect of this adaptation. Not for me. If a kid comes in looking for a post-apocalyptic and/or girl-centric comic I will definitely point them elsewhere.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Elaine

    I would never recommend this for teens EVER. Too didactic and somewhere along the lines of Lord of the Flies meets the Hunger Games but somehow darker and incredibly morbid. The title is misleading and may lead a female reader to believe this is a story about a female heroine. Yay! A girl who owns a city? Sounds wonderful! Wrong! Lisa is narcissistic and self centered...a detestable "heroine" if that is what you would like to call her.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Heidi

    One of my favorite graphic novels Ive read this year, This is the story of a girl who after the apocalypse that wipes out all adults decides to get every one together and start a militia to protect them selves and they start a town together that she runs. She is awesome and I love her charter. This is a fantastic graphic novel

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