Lora's Reviews > The Storm in the Barn

The Storm in the Barn by Matt Phelan
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's review
Oct 04, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: children-s-lit, graphic-novels
Recommended for: Amy
Read in October, 2009

I love graphic novels that divert from the typical superhero comic book format and that is exactly what this book does. It takes a moment from U.S. history and tells the story beautifully with a bit of a magical element.

Jack is an eleven year old boy living in the midwest during the Dust Bowl. He's picked on, has a sick sister, and watching his entire community shrink in despair from all the dust. He soon discovers something in an abandon barn that just may help, but people start to think he has dust dementia and this discredits and depresses Jack even more.

The illustrations are soft, yet hard and jagged when the mood of the story becomes harsh and desperate. The lack of color really helps to paint the tone of the Dust Bowl as well.

I loved how this book is simple enough for elementary kids to grasp, but has enough details and more complex themes that teens can take something from it as well. A great alternative graphic novel.

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