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Kingdom

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  166 ratings  ·  26 reviews
A journey through the inbetween places of the British landscape to the bleak coast, Kingdom follows a family on their holiday to a small caravan park, where teenager Andrew explores the dunes, and half-remembered stories from the past are shared.

Once again, Jon McNaught creates a beautiful graphic novel that makes the ordinary, extraordinary.
Hardcover, 128 pages
Published August 6th 2019 by Nobrow (first published October 1st 2018)
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really liked it Average rating 4.00  · 
Rating details
 ·  166 ratings  ·  26 reviews


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David Schaafsma
Oct 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: art-comics, travel
After just having read Kevin Huizenga's close look at insomnia in the mundane life of an unemployed man in Glenn Ganges in The River at Night, it only seems right to follow that read with the quiet, lovely tale of a holiday a mum and her two young children' take, visiting an older aunt's house at the sea. The kids are throughly bored visiting the old woman, forced to look at old photographs of when Mom was young, getting respite only from video games and sci fi movies on the telly.

The natural s
...more
Annelies
Mar 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels
The boredom of a holiday at the english seaside is beautifully translated in the sequence of the drawings.
Declan
Dec 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The slogans on lorries that offer a slight distraction as you are driven along the motorway by a parent. The false promises of a shopping centre. The certainty that you'll love somewhere because the same parent once loved being there. The knowing that it won't be so. The weather. The boy who's tougher than you (or wants you to believe he is). The unnoticed birds calling and dining on fast food. The visit to a great-aunt. The ornaments in her home. The caravan park where others are, perhaps, havi ...more
Hally
Dec 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
There is something about the caravan holiday experience. You set off full of promise, with involuntary pipe-dreams of making new friends, romantic connections and wild adventures. Ultimately though there seems to be little disappointment in the real experience that finds you heading home after a subtle and introspective time. In his new Graphic novel Kingdom, Jon McNaught gives any people-watcher or pensive soul the opportunity of their dreams to zoom in on an ordinary family on the motorway dur ...more
Nick Carraway LLC
Aug 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
"*KSK*
*FIZZ*
*PATTER*
'Should've tapped the top.'
'What?'
'Stops it fizzing over.'
'Oh yeah... I forgot.'
*CRASH*
*SIP*
*GURGLE*
'Reckon Carlsberg is my third favourite beer.'
*KSSSHHH*
'It goes... uh...
...Budweiser first...
...then Fosters...
...then Carlsberg.'
'Yeah, same probably.'
*SIP*
'You ever had Guinness?'
'Yeah, obviously!'
'...'
'Guinness is my fourth favourite.'"
Keen
Jun 21, 2019 rated it it was ok

This style of artwork did very little for me and yet his talent is clearly apparent. There were plenty of moments where this looked like it could have developed into something creepy and special, but instead what we got is a lot of squawking, cawing birds, computer games, phone reception related dramas and a series of fragmented beach encounters.

I think the danger of trying to cram so many small panels onto the page is that it can become crowded, distracting and annoying. More is les
...more
Olivia
Oct 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I picked this up because I liked the art. It looks very printmaker-like with bold blocky colors that are clearly separated by negative space. Each page or pair of pages usually has the same color scheme, which gives even more of a printerly feel. The colors are a bit muted and on the cool side, which is very my aesthetic.

In terms of the structure of the comic, there's overall very little dialogue and it's very believable: it's a family on a vacation that only the parent wants to go on and one o
...more
Kelly
Aug 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I can imagine (perhaps unfairly) that there are some readers who will finish this exquisite book and think, "But nothing happened," and I guess that's technically true.

But on the other hand, everything happens. As I read this, I found I often had a catch in my throat; even though my own family vacations took place in a wholly different time and country, Kingdom seems, somehow, universally evocative of a certain kind of nostalgia, helped by its allowance for silence -- the "nothing happened" aspect.
Helen Leigh-Phippard
Nov 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
The artwork in this book is absolutely stunning. I love the way McNaught focuses on the minutiae of everyday life, the things that others might not notice or might think uninteresting- because here they become beautiful and fascinating. His way he puts his stories together with minimal dialogue and far more art frames than most comic book/ graphic novelists gives his story a slowly unfolding, meditative kind of feel that has a rhythm unique to McNaught's work. Wonderful stuff.
Clare McCarthy
Sep 17, 2019 rated it liked it
This is a magical book about an experience that is anything but magical: a family vacation. I might be biased in that regard. My family spent a week each summer at either Hampton Beach, NH or camping outside Misquamicut beach in RI. I have almost no fond memories of these trips.

I am quite fond of Jon McNaught's artwork here. His choice of panel layouts is cinematic, juxtaposing the three main characters with snapshots (get it?) of random details in their surroundings. And by using variations of
...more
grieshaber.reads
This graphic novel is tactually and visually stunning. The cover has a raw, cardboard feel with a matte design overlayed with a glossy titled, text box. It was the look and feel of the cover that drew me in. It was the muted colored, grid, tiled artwork with very little text that hooked me. The story itself is very plain and not very eventful but the mundaneness of it is what I related to. Kingdom is just the story of a single mom and her two kids taking a road trip to a seaside resort (of sorts ...more
Harry Brake
Oct 05, 2019 rated it liked it
I love the color, detail, and ability to push you into a place each of us can identify with. With the correct graphic novel, this is possible. There is no doubt the talent of Jon McNaught is present, and you certainly sense a rhythm of the environment, that often coincides with individuals.

The overall expectation was missing, and for me was a realization on behalf of one of the characters identified, however, maybe there does not have to be a lightbulb moment in very story. Maybe that is one of
...more
Christine Smith
Sep 26, 2019 rated it liked it
What a wonderful journey to the seaside. When I first picked it up, I was intregued because it had very little text and I wanted to know what they story was about. That is the brilliance of McNaught's work. With few words, Jon McNaught was able to tell the story of a mother and her two children as they travel from the city to the seaside for a vacation. Visiting a place that the mother went as a child was a bit of a nostalgic trip for her, but her children had a hard to finding that same connect ...more
Daisy
Jan 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Quality Rating: Four Stars
Enjoyment Rating: Four Stars

A lovely little collection of meditations on growing up in the modern day and age. McNaught's illustration style is so careful and thoughtful, interested in tiny details and moments, sounds and feelings and images. I'd love to see him make a film. This book is both melancholic and content. It mourns what the present has done to the way we socialise, but it also sympathises with the breakdown of communication between generati
...more
Julia
Nov 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
There's something about the boredom of family vacations that McNaught captures beautifully here. Although set in the U.K., this is like every Myrtle Beach vacation I had as a kid. Complete with backseat fights with my sister, visits with elderly relatives I barely knew, and the junk food you're only allowed while road tripping. Also the strange friendships you strike up at the beach. Love the humor, the sound effects and the dream like illustrations.
Tom
Jul 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
Although I like McNaught's illustrations--as well as his depiction of a self-absorbed, oblivious teenagers--the book design doesn't do justice to his work: either the format should be larger (too many 1" x 1" panels) or the book should be longer, with the format redesigned. Devoting 3/4 of many pages to 25 1" x 1" images makes the book feel crowded and busy, which counters the feeling it's trying to establish of a family on a weekend holiday to the shore side.
Mrs. Schatz
Oct 09, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: lhs2019
Didn't understand the purpose of the book or why the company thought this was good for the selection of the month. After reading the book details on several websites, I understand why they liked it. I wasn't crazy into but could see what the author was going for. Very little wording which is nice. The reader must read the pictures for the story.
Sara Rieger
Jul 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Had a hard time getting immersed at first. But by the end I was in awe of the beautiful sense of place the author had created. I also appreciated the accuracy of the child's limited perspective in the young girl, and the teens sense of confusion at his place in the world. All mostly done with gorgeous illustrations.
Jessica Haider
Sep 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
A quick graphic novel about a mom and her two kids taking a trip to a caravan park on the British coast. The monotony of the everyday, long car rides, and the boredom of a bleak seaside are perfectly rendered in this book. Not much happens, but really, how much really happens on run-of-the-mill family getaways.
Carol Tilley
Sep 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics, england, family
Lovely.
Trey Piepmeier
Nov 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
This story goes nowhere, but it's a surprisingly familiar glimpse at a road trip mostly from the perspective of children. The art is beautiful, it looks like papercutting.
Lian
Dec 31, 2018 rated it liked it
Beautiful illustrations and clever portrayal of holiday time minutiae, but the narrative isn’t clever or resolved. I just wanted ‘more’.
MilesTeller Shirtless
Sep 16, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-comix
memories so vivid you can touch them
Liz
Nov 12, 2019 rated it did not like it
dull.
Nicky
Aug 04, 2019 rated it liked it
very nice illustrations and a cute story that didn't need much dialogue
Autumn
Dec 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
A book that perfectly captures a moment in time. The artwork is striking and nostalgic, as other reviewers have said, you could frame any page. A beautiful translation of boredom, family dynamics, and the under whelming promise of a British caravan holiday.
Pam
rated it really liked it
Oct 06, 2019
Tom Abbott
rated it it was amazing
Jan 11, 2019
Maureen
rated it really liked it
Oct 15, 2019
Kamila Przychodzka
rated it it was amazing
Nov 12, 2019
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Jon McNaught was born in 1985. He lives in London where he draws comics, and works as an illustrator, printmaker and lecturer.



His Clients include; Penguin Books, Faber, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The New Yorker, Walker Books, Picador, and the BBC.

He is also a regular cover artist for the London Review of Books.



He is the Author of Kingdom, Birch
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