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Bone #52

Posted: Friday, October 3, 2003
By: Ray Tate



Writer/Artist: Jeff Smith
Publisher: Cartoon Books

Doing the timewarp, Bone finally reaches the shelves of your local comic book store. Of the three late birds that stubbornly refused to roost, Bone was the only one teeming with worth to justify the wait.

Jeff Smith creates a fascinating fable within a fairy tale to explain the attitude of dragons and the origins of the Locust. The fable also bears the style of a tall tale since through the reading it explains the geography of Thorn's kingdom and the importance of dreaming.

The threat of Rat Creatures and the Locust increases with the tension of multiplying and encroaching Ghost Circles. In facing the threat, the strength of the characterization becomes more fortified. Mr. Smith writes the characters in a way that extends them beyond their overt roles. Phoney for instance is greedy, but there is a limit to his greed.

For the first time since picking up an issue of Bone the reader now can see an out for our characters that Smith does not telegraph but implies. He also with this out implies why Bone is so important to the story.

Not only does the story in Bone rivet one's attention; the artwork keeps the eyes rapt upon the pages. The battle of the dragons engrosses almost as much as the predicament which our heroes face. Mr. Smith does not just exhibit that talent for the larger, big-budget scenes. His off-the-hand panels involving Smiley for instance bear equal impetus.

Bone creates a permeable story that lingers in the mind well after reading. The book could be years late, and the reader still can pick up where she left off.



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