Gregory and the Gargoyles, by Denis-Pierre Filippi, for Timeslip Tuesday

Today's Timeslip Tuesday offering is a French import-- Gregory and the Gargoyles, by Denis-Pierre Filippi, illustrated by J Etienne and Silvio Camoni, translated by Anna Provitola (Humanoids, August 2017).  It's a must-read for young graphic novel fans of fun fantasy! (which isn't always me....).

Gregory is put out as all get out when his father moves his family to a new city.  He doesn't want to make new friends and start at a new school.  But that night, he finds a medallion on which is a drawing of the church next door, and so he decides to go exploring.....when he reaches the top of the church, the medallion begins to shine brightly, and Gregory is hurled back in time to the 17th century!

There he meets the church gargoyles, come to life, and finds that they defend of the city and its magical creatures against dark magicians, and they need his help. Gregory's life in the 17th century parallels his real one--same annoying sister, same getting into trouble at school, same parents trying to corral him, same horrible Aunt Agatha.  But there's a big difference--Gregory discovers he has magical talents, and that his Aunt Agatha isn't just annoying--she's the leader of the bad guys!

In a swirl of magical adventures and encounters with magical creatures, including meeting up with a girl who's gifted with magic as well, Gregory tries to help the gargoyles....but the end of this particular mission is ambiguous, setting the stage for more to come. I've said before that I'm not a great graphic novel reader; I have trouble slowing down to look at the pictures, and have a hard time not skimming speech bubbles.  And I was even more confused than usual here-it really is a brightly colored, madcap swirl of adventure and I had trouble keeping the story straight.

But I was still entertained, and feel confident that graphic novel/fantasy/magical creature fans (with younger eyes and more tolerance for intense visual stimulation) will love it! It's fun time travel-wise--I really liked Gregory's plunge into his 17th century alternate reality.  That part I understood perfectly, and thought it was very well done.  There are other time travel hops later in the book, but they are more bubbles of adventure and less integral to the plot.

The target audience really will enjoy this one lots, and will be glad that the 2nd and 3rd books are already out there in English and  ready to read!

In case, like me, you were not familiar with Humanoids, here's a recentish article from Publishers Weekly about their kids/YA graphic novel imprint.

1 comment:

  1. I'm not much of a fan of graphic novels, but it's good to know about this. My grandkids and grand-nephews and -nieces like them Thanks for the review.


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