Customer Review

5.0 out of 5 stars A delightful read delightfully presented, 3 July 2010
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This review is from: Orientation (Gunnerkrigg Court, Vol. 1) (Hardcover)
"Gunnerkrigg Court: Orientation: Volume 1" is a beautifully produced collection of the first dozen or so chapters of Tom Sidell's web-comic "Gunnerkrigg Court". Any fan of the web-comic will want to buy this and Volume 2 just to have a hard copy of it.

But what of those who have not heard of Gunnerkrigg Court? How do I explain this mysterious, wonderful place to them? People often compare it to the Harry Potter books, but I think it is better contrasted to them.

While there is magic in both worlds, the magic in the Court and Woods beyond is very much low-key and scorned by the inhabitants of the Court in favour of technology. Nevertheless, it is there, affecting everything.

Antimony Carver, our hero, is apparently an orphan, like Harry Potter, but is perhaps a much darker, complex and on the surface at least, a far more self-contained person than Harry. Also, unlike him she has at first no obvious allies, enemies or goal.

Nevertheless, she soon discovers why the students are barred from Gilletie Wood, that the Court is far larger than she imagined and finds several invaluable friends and unlikely allies. All of this proves invaluable as she begins to investigate the nature of the unusual relationship between Court and Wood.

Symbols and meaning are at the heart of this story and Tom Sidell delights in lacing the story with snippets of information, whether they be a symbol on a wall, a careless aside by a character or any number of things. Even the name Antimony is of significance. You never know when or if the most inconsequential thing will later turn out to be of vital importance. Much fun can be had spotting foreshadowing and speculating what certain things may foreshadow.

But even if none of this piques your interest I still heartily recommend this collection to anyone who enjoys the works of Diana Wynne Jones, J.K. Rowling or just a ripping good yarn.
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