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Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Cinebook The 9th Art Alone 3 - The Clan of the Shark & Alone 4 - The Red Cairns


Authors: Fabien Vehlmann; illustrated by Bruno Gazzotti
Age: 10 years and up
Size: 21.7 x 28.7 cm
Number of pages: 48 colour pages
Publication: May 2015

ISBN: 9781849182508
Price: £6.99 inc. VAT

The five Campton children are travelling to neighbouring cities by bus, desperately looking for other living humans. All they find are deserted settlements, burned forests and packs of feral dogs... Until one day they discover an amusement park filled with kids, all found and gathered by Saul, the owner’s son. A strange, authoritarian child who worships the park’s great white shark, and whose arbitrary rules are not at all to the taste of the newcomers…


 

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 Alone 4 - The Red Cairns

 Alone 4 - The Red Cairns
 Authors: Fabien Vehlmann; illustrated by Bruno Gazzotti
Age: 10 years and up
Size: 21.7 x 28.7 cm
Number of pages: 48 colour pages
Publication: July 2015

ISBN: 9781849182560
Price: £6.99 inc. VAT

The five children, now accompanied by several dissidents from the Clan of the Shark, have returned to Campton, where Ivan found some clues about the night of the Vanishing. One evening, as they are discussing the organisation of their new camp, the Master of Knives comes to ask for their help ... and collapses, gravely injured. Searching the city for what attacked him, the children are stunned to discover huge piles of objects covered in red paint…






Not really sure why I got two books in one package but I am NOT complaining!

Now I am not going to talk too much about story.  I think the snippets given are enough otherwise the surprises will not be surprises.  I have to say that when I heard about this series and read the concept and saw the art I thought to myself that it did not seem too impressive.  It might work for a while but be...not so great.

My head must have been firmly up my backside that day.

This is anything other than some "kiddies left alone" story. Some kids driving around in a green double-decker bus -it's nothing like the childrens TV series The Double Deckers.  This is serious and at times downright nasty -as in The Clan of the Shark.  The ending....well.  Wow.

And with The Red Cairns a few times I just said a very rude word out loud. The Master Of Knives returns -an added bonus!

The scripts/stories are excellent and the art style, which is why I stupidly thought this was not going to be that good, works wonderfully and, as always, the colour work of Caroline and Ralph lend even more atmosphere to the books.

I was about 10 or 11 years old when I saw the movie The Lord Of The Flies (1963) and this series reminds me a little of that because kids are put into a situation we only, usually, see adult characters placed in to.

I wrote a while back that Cinebook The 9th Art may well be translating Franco-Belgian books into English but they are still the UKs biggest, only serious, comic company.  I was worried that young people would grow up only reading these comic albums and not ones created by creators from the UK. In fact, I hope that books like this will encourage those readers to create their own comics and if even just a single one is anywhere near as good as Alone then we owe Olivier Cadic a big debt of gratitude.

I highly recommend this series and I hope you find it as great as I do!

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