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Last of the Sandwalkers

4.03  ·  Rating details ·  436 ratings  ·  103 reviews
MEET LUCY. She's a fearless explorer, a brilliant scientist, and a tireless leader.

She's also a half inch tall.

THERE IS AN ENTIRE CIVILIZATION under the big palm tree by the edge of the desert—a society of beetle. In this bug's paradise, beetles write books, raise families, and some of them, like Lucy, even do scientific research.

But as Lucy is about to discover, the world
Paperback, 312 pages
Published April 7th 2015 by First Second
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Roz Gibson It should be fine (nothing in it above a mild PG rating). There are some specialized scientific words, but he provides explanations and if your niece…moreIt should be fine (nothing in it above a mild PG rating). There are some specialized scientific words, but he provides explanations and if your niece likes bugs she may already be familiar with the terms. But (this is a big BUT) the book has a very strong pro-science and anti-religion bent-- if that will be an issue then it might be best to pass. The author's earlier insect graphic novel (Clan Aphis, about bees) is much more straightforward and without political and religious overtones.(less)

Community Reviews

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4.03  · 
Rating details
 ·  436 ratings  ·  103 reviews

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First Second Books
Apr 09, 2015 marked it as first-second-publications
We got this amazing trade review for Jay Hosler's LAST OF THE SANDWALKERS that was like, 'this book has so much back matter, it's like Tolkien!' and we were delighted and Jay was delighted, too.

This book has so much back matter because it's full of science -- it's an adventure conducted by a scientist (Lucy, our beetle protagonist) and the author, Jay Hosler, is a scientist himself -- a biologist who studies beetles.

We're delighted to be publishing a graphic novel filled with so many cool scie
Mar 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
Stuff I Read - Last of the Sandwalkers by Jay Hosler Review

I did not really know what to expect when I opened this book. A graphic novel about insects. And science. But what exactly does that mean? It means awesome. I think I was expecting something like those Disney/Pixar movies from a while ago. But boy would that be putting this book in too small a box. This book is about science. It is about understanding science and using science to increase our understanding of the world. It is about not l
Melissa Chung
Jan 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Last of the Sandwalkers was a very interesting graphic novel. It had philosophy rooted into the storyline. I'm giving it 4 stars. It was definitely a fun read, but not groundbreaking.

In the beginning of this graphic novel we meet a handful of bugs. Lucy is our leader and navigator. She is also our historian and writes down all that she sees. The expedition crew set out from their oasis in the desert called Coleopolis. While trekking through the sand dunes they discover a hue-mon. The bugs do not
What hath Jay Hosler wrought with his graphic novel, Last of the Sandwalkers (2015, First Second Books)? How about 300+ pages of phenomenal storytelling, a thoroughly developed plot (with a few fleshed-out subplots for good measure), a superbly sublime protagonist, and a few supporting characters that bolster the story without detracting from the power of the protagonist! This is a solid work of literature, regardless of its graphic or prose setting.

It has become increasingly rare that a graphi
Jan 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Loved this book! I teaches you about bugs, but also ties in a great plot about adventure and family. Recommend to anyone who loves a good twist on a classic adventure. It was an unexpected find for me, but I give it the trophy of being one of my new favorite books!
Jul 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
I was given this title to review by NetGalley and the publishers First Second in exchange for my honest review.

When Lucy and her ragtag team of fellow scientists and family members travel into the desert to find life after making a hasty bet with a disbeliever in life past their borders, they discover more than they bargained for. First, the insidious Dr. Owen turns on them and leaves them for dead in the desert, then they get carried further away from their home of Coleopolis, meeting danger an
Feb 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
Last of the Sandwalkers surprised me as a graphic novel. I’m not overly fond of bugs, but this story really brought them into the light. Lucy is a scientist at heart and sets off on journey to find if there are more beetles in the world around them. Her community is not fond of scientists though and she finds that the overseer of their journey tries to sabotage them from finding their way home, while stealing their discovery of large bones in the sand. They end up on their own and must find thei ...more
A Heroine Like No Other!

(Full disclosure: I received a free copy of this book for review from the publisher.)

I find myself thinking about this hue-mon all of the time. I wonder if it ever thought about us?

Was there room in here for thoughts about beetles?

Did it ever wonder how some glow?

Or spray liquid fire?

Or dance on water?

Or drink fog?

Maybe someday, if a hue-mon reads this journal, it will help them appreciate all of the amazing little aliens living underfoot.

Lucy may "just" be a junior facu
Apr 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: scott
Brought to you by OBS Reviewer Scott

Last of the Sandwalkers is a graphic novel that even non-comic readers can pick up and enjoy. It’s an joyous story of insects and their trials and tribulations in a world hither unknown to them. It speaks to tweenies and to the oldest of us all, with the story well paced and exciting, yet keeping all factors of insect life firmly rooted in science.

It follows the exploits of the duplicious Dr. Owen, Lucy the single minded scientist and her quest to find life ou
Mar 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
At the edge of a desert, lies an oasis paradise. The civilization that inhabits this paradise is a complex, smart one full of scientists, writers, and every other kind of citizen you can imagine...except, they’re all beetles! Lucy, a clever scientist beetle, and her trusty companions, set out to explore beyond the desert and search for other life. But nasty Professor Owen ruins Lucy’s plans and sets her and group on a surprising voyage full of discoveries.

Part graphic novel, part adventure story
Skye Kilaen
Jay Hosler is a college biology professor AND a gifted cartoonist AND a fabulous storyteller. Combine all of that and you get Last of the Sandwalkers, an adventure mixed with political conspiracy populated by bugs. Bugs that live in New Coleopolis, a beetle city with a theocratic government and institutions of higher learning. Beyond New Coleopolis is a wasteland... or at least, so they've been taught. Lucy, a scientist in New Coleopolis, isn't so sure. Overcoming the skepticism of her colleague ...more
Bethany Miller
Sep 02, 2015 marked it as to-read
Student Review by Lydia J
Grade Range: 6th grade and up
Genre: Graphic Novel
Literary Merit: Very Good
Characterization: Excellent

Last of the Sandwalkers by Jay Hosler recounts the epic journey of Lucy, a beetle on a mission to make her big break in the science community. Lucy wants to be a part of something bigger than her small world inside a coconut. Lucy, with a host of friends (and one angry Professor from the University), journey outside of their familiar home to explore the wonders of the wor
Jun 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-novels
It was hard for me to stay focused and read this book but I am not sure why because it was actually really really good! It is a midgrade to teen graphic novel about an odd family of beetles who live in this wierd cult like society in the desert. The family, who are mostly scientists, go out into the desert in search of outside life forms. The main character is a smart and quirky beetle wearing a baseball hat. The family runs into a lot of problems within the natural world and their wierd cult ho ...more
Feb 22, 2018 rated it liked it
I have a few mixed feelings about this book. First off, it's stunningly illustrated, and the storytelling is quite enjoyable. The only thing stopping me from loving this book is the combination of the incredibly dense word bubbles with lovingly done lettering that unfortunately gets difficult to read for long stretches. What otherwise is a wonderful graphic novel for a younger audience is hindered by its densely lettered bubbles, which is unfortunate because the dialogue contained within is incr ...more
Apr 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Let's see, this book is about a group of varied beetles who set out on a scientific expedition to search for signs of life outside their oasis, affirm the importance of inquiry-based science, and survive to tell the tale. Hmmmm - I would have never thought such a concept could be turned into a book much less such a fabulous, funny, smart and fascinating book. Jay Hosler pulls it off and this is a triumph of a match combining real science, terrific comic illustrations and intelligent reading fun. ...more
Owen Curtsinger
Jun 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
How a full-time biology professor managed to write and illustrate a 300 page comic book in his spare time is beyond me, but we've certainly benefited from his professional expertise; Last of the Sandwalkers is a graphic adventure story that is also a fascinating introductions to lesser known beetles, worms, spiders, and other insects. Well-researched footnotes and scientific nomenclature make this a great educational read for any age, and Hosler strikes the perfect balance between the two worlds ...more
Jun 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
Exploration, adventure, danger, betrayal…what more could you want in a comic? You will also learn a great deal about beetles! Much like he did in Clan Apis, about honeybees, author/illustrator Hosler combines a fascinating, engaging story with a lot of scientific facts. I love the incredibly detail in the drawings, and how Lucy and her fellow adventurers try to understand the wider world (they have never encountered mammals, for example). There are some very good points about the power of knowle ...more
Jul 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
This graphic novel about insects is an allegorical animal fantasy similar to Animal Farm. A group of beetle scientists leave their oasis for a quest to find life outside of their colony. They have a variety of dangerous encounters that challenge their beliefs about their history. Filled with lots of entomological details, this is a carefully crafted insect story that poses thoughtful questions about science and religion.
Jun 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
a science adventure! Lucy is a beetle & a scientist, and she leads her team on an expedition away from the only home they know to try to discover stuff about the wide world. this book is cute & hilarious & surprising, and loads of fun. plus you will learn a lot about insect biology, i bet.
Benji Martin
Apr 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This might be my favorite graphic novel. I loved it.
READING THIS BOOK IS LIKE COMPLETING A LOVE CIRCUIT. Hopefully I'll get a chance to write more later.
Nov 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars.

I checked this book out from the library but was not sure what to expect. Thought it might be a bit text heavy. I ended up really loving it and didn't find it tedious at all.

The art was quite enjoyable though I must admit that it was a bit too busy at times and I had to stare a while to make sense of certain pages. I thought the composition of many of the panels and pages were just wonderful though.

The story was okay. Enjoyable but not amazing. I really liked the characters though.
Soobie's scared
Well, this was interesting.

I'm not a big fan of insects and beetles but I liked this graphic novel. I learnt a lot and I didn't notice I was actually learning something new.

I have to say that sometimes it was a bit difficult to recognize the characters. I usually prefer black-and-white comics but in this case a bit of color (or a different kind of shading) would have helped.

The story was a bit confusing at first. It took me some time to get used to it. In addition, some of the plot explanation
Feb 02, 2018 rated it it was ok
I had a hard time with this graphic novel. Not only was it too long, but the twisted, complicated plot was actually kind of boring. A group of insects leave their sheltered home for a scientific mission of exploration, but end up being tricked by one of their leaders and struggling to find their way home. I liked the drawings, and I also enjoyed the way the author worked in facts about the insects on which the characters were based. The book suffered in black and white however, because on most p ...more
Aug 15, 2017 rated it did not like it
I am obviously not the target audience, but since I work with middle school students, and it is a nominee for the Volunteer State Book Award, I had to read it. I am not a big fan of graphic novels, and I found this one hard to follow, especially with the black and white illustrations. I am waiting for my students to explain it to me! And I wonder after reading part of the annotations, why the author doesn't believe that science and creation can go together. I love pop culture references, but eve ...more
James Christie
Apr 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Last of the Sandwalkers was a mostly decent book that combines a mild humor, imaginative storytelling, and advanced science. The Protagonists are likable when they need to be and the Antagonists easy to hate when needed as well. The book is an easy read, besides the adequately complex science that is about as simply explained as it can be. The humor was minorly unfunny, but that is opinion based in the end. The story itself was fun, educational, and developed the characters, overall making it an ...more
Marjorie Elwood
May 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: art, humor, science, travel
Lucy, our scientist heroine of the bug variety, leads a group of adventurers on the “first mission to seek out life beyond our oasis”. Leaving from New Coleopolis in P.C. (Post Coconut – the original Coleopolis having been demolished when 3 coconuts fell on top of it), Lucy and her followers discover new life forms while battling a sinister religion. Full of interesting scientific facts (the author is a professor of biology), oodles of puns, and annotated with funny and fascinating notes, this w ...more
Jul 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Scientists, Entomologists, People with an interest in bugs, People who like adventure comics
I love this book! The art is very cool with anthropomorphic insects (more natural looking rather than humanoid) as the main protagonists and antagonist. The story itself has secrets and great action sequences. The entire book has a general feeling of exploration and curiosity, perfect for an adventure novel. I was a bit dubious at the cover art and the synopsis, but I am so glad I picked this book up.

Also, I knew by page 100 it was written by an entomologist! I believe a great amount of love for
Ryan Fohl
Apr 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Excellent! Such a cool combination of things I love. A fun adventure story that is also a love letter to science. I love the conflict between the believers and the curious. Great art work and good humor. The annotations are interesting too.

What I learned: luciferase is a chemical used by multiple seemingly unrelated species (fireflies, mushrooms, sea creatures) to create light. An example of parallel evolution named after the devil.
Ms. Arca
Sep 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
4.5 only knocking it for lack of clarity sometimes.

But LOVED the concept, bugs, science, adventure, robots, philosophy, all in a graphic novel— yes please and thank you! I just delighted in this book and I randomly picked it up at the library. I also love the glossary/ annotations at the end- informative and funny:).
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Dr. Jay Hosler is an Associate Professor of Biology at Juniata College and an award-winning cartoonist who writes and draws comic books about biology and natural history. His work has been called "ingenious" (The London Times), "goofily inventive" (The New York Times), and "entertaining and slyly educational" (The Comics Journal). His works include Active Synapse classics such as Clan Apis, The Sa ...more
“I find myself thinking about this hue-mon all of the time. I wonder if it ever thought about us?
Was there room in here for thoughts about beetles?
Did it ever wonder how some glow?
Or spray liquid fire?
Or dance on water?
Or drink fog?
Maybe someday, if a hue-mon reads this journal, it will help them appreciate all of the amazing little aliens living underfoot.”
More quotes…