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Abadazad, Book One: The Road to Inconceivable (Abadazad #01)by J. M. DeMatteis and Mike Ploog
Synopses & Reviews
Kate and her brother Matt are growing up in the big city, and life isn't always easy. They find refuge in the world of Abadazad — a series of books written over 100 years ago by classic author Franklin O. Barrie.
Kate and Matt spend hours reading the Abadazad books, and know every character. One day, Kate takes Matt to the fun fair. He steps onto a carousel, goes around once, twice — and then disappears.
Though Kate and her mother search for Matt for years, they never find him. Finally, Kate tells her mother they must give up looking — but on that very day, Kate meets an old lady, Martha, who also loves the Abadazad books, and seems to know more about them than anyone. Martha tells her that Abadazad is a real place, but Kate doesn't believe her — until a mysterious blue globe arrives at Kate's door, and Kate sees her brother trapped inside it.
Now Kate knows what she has to do: she must go into the real Abadazad and find her lost brother, no matter what dangers it might hold.
"An appealing blend of Spirited Away and The Wizard of Oz, this comics adaptation expertly blends art and text in the launch of the Abadazad series. The story unfolds through Kate's 'enchanted journal.' The belligerent 14-year-old is angry at her father for running out ('Dad ditched us when Matt was two and I was five'), her mother for withdrawing emotionally, and at herself for failing, five years before, to prevent her younger brother Matty's abduction. When she learns that Matty is being held prisoner in Abadazad, the magical realm that the siblings used to love reading about, she realizes she can still rescue him. Thanks to a cogent design and Ploog's deft brushwork, the paper-over-board volume distinguishes the yellowed pages of Kate's emotionally messy but honest diary from the magical tales of Abadazad. DeMatteis seamlessly weaves far-out threads into Kate's real life, such as the heroine's neighbor, Mrs. Vaughn, who turns out to be Little Martha from Abadazad ('You see, time, as we know it, doesn't exist in Abadazad,' the woman explains). When events get too marvelous for words, Ploog's artwork explodes into the pages. The artist's fans may be disappointed that the comic strips seem constricted by the layout, but his full-page images demonstrate how easily he toggles between Kate's drab domicile and the splendor of Abadazad. And Kate's edginess keeps the story from feeling too saccharine. Readers may well share in the heroine's reluctant surrender to hopeful wonder. Ages 9-up." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Expanded from a well-received comic into a hybrid text-and-graphic-novel format....A promising start for readers between Jennifer and Matt Holms's Babymouse and Jeff Smith's Bone." Kirkus Reviews
"A thoughtful read with surprising psychological nuance, this is not typical fantasy fare." Booklist
When the first three issues of J. M. DeMatteis and Mike Ploog's Abadazad hit the comic-book stores two years ago, they found an immediate — and passionate — audience. No one could resist the heart-tugging story of Kate and her brother Matt, lost in the world of Abadazad. No one could fail to be mesmerized by the stunning artwork — from Queen Ija with her third eye to Wix and his bright flame to Headstrong in his wheeled chair.
Now Abadazad is a book series — and, true to its origins, it's an original: it takes place in three distinct worlds; it cuts between nineteenth-century storytelling and a contemporary girl's diary; it features comic-book panels, "antique" illustrations, and spot art — and all the while, it seamlessly keeps kids turning page after page.
An ultra-contemporary format with its roots in great storytelling; a group of fervid fans; an author/illustrator team with an impeccable pedigree — welcome to the world of Abadazad.
The cult favorite comic is finally available in two illustrated chapter book editions. In The Road to Inconceivable, Kate discovers that her missing little brother is trapped in the world of Abadazad. Will she have the courage to look for him?
Kate's little brother Matt is missing, and Kate thinks she will never see him again.
About the Author
Eisner Award winner J.M. DeMatteis has written for newspapers, magazines, television, film and, of course, comic books where his work has won both popular and critical acclaim. His projects have ranged from the super-heroics of Spider-Man, Superman, and the Silver Surfer to the comedy of Hero Squared and the Justice League; but DeMatteis's greatest acclaim has come for groundbreaking personal visions like Moonshadow, Seekers Into the Mystery and the autobiographical Brooklyn Dreams, which Booklist in a starred review called "As graphically distingueshed and creatively novelistic a graphic novel as has ever been...a classic of the form." He lives with his family in upstate New York.
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