The Wrenchies

The Wrenchies

Book - 2014
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"Sherwood and Orson should never have gone into that cave. That day, a door was opened from our world into a dark and profane realm...and earth's destiny was changed forever. In this demented future, whatever life remains on earth is oppressed by the evil shadowsmen. Only a gang of ruthless and powerful children called the Wrenchies can hope to stand against them. When Hollis, a lonely boy from our world, is magically given access to the future world of the Wrenchies, he finally finds a place he belongs. But it is not an easy world to live in, and Hollis's quest is bigger than he ever dreamed of."--From publisher's web site.
Publisher: New York : First Second, 2014.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9781596434219
Branch Call Number: [GN] FIC/DALRYMPLE
Characteristics: 302 pages : chiefly color illustrations ; 22 cm


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ArapahoeLesley Nov 09, 2016

This was so painful to read. And despite the art being the best thing about it, it became just as painful to look at. There was no plot. The narrative was all over the place. The dialog was stiff and ridiculous and very dull. 'Action' sequences are completely skipped over in the drawings but their multi year long 'walk' took 40 pages of wishing the whole thing was over. If I didn't know that this wasn't representative of graphic novels I would never read another one in my life.

iratom22 Jun 15, 2016

This comic was truly amazing! I must admit that it wasn't an easy read and does require a rather high level of intellectual investment. A couple of my friends said that they couldn't get through the entire book but I must say that once you reach a certain point, the story begins to fall into place and is no longer as confusing.
Overall, I definitely enjoyed it, the art is amazing and the plot is very different from what one would expect. In addition there is a lot of implicit content in the comic and one must be attentive enough to read between the lines, make connections and truly pay attention to fully enjoy the read.

Oct 13, 2015

It tries too hard and I didn't like it.

May 13, 2015

This comic is drawn really dirty and gritty, with dark colours, lots of blood, and a messy style which I found beautiful in a melancholy way. The story is about a post-apocalyptic-like world where there are no adults, only children and teenagers, because adults are killed or taken by evil Shadowsmen.
There is a lot happening in this book and there is a lot of text in each frame, with multiple characters talking at once and having different conversations, which made it a little hard to follow everything that’s happening. But once into it, the drawings and constant action will keep you reading. (Lots of violence, swears and f-bombs –which make sense, given the characters circumstances).

Jan 27, 2015

post apocalyptic;
kids fighting demons;
magic and comic books;
you know, your standard trans-dimensional epic sci-fi horror adventure story...

JCLChrisK Jan 05, 2015

It lingers, I'll give it that. Even if I have nothing else definite to say about this book, I can say that it is a powerful enough artistic creation that my mind keeps returning to it, mulling it over. Puzzling over it.

Because it really is quite the puzzle, and I'm left feeling dissatisfied. What frustrates me is I can't decide if I'm dissatisfied because I didn't read carefully enough figure out the book's point or because the book is ineffective at making its point. I believe I understand the very convoluted, complicated plot and see the themes that are on display, I'm just not quite sure what Dalrymple is trying to say about life and art--and it certainly seems like he's trying to say something, having gone to so much trouble to create such a complex, involved work. What in the story is meant to be taken literally and what metaphorically and allegorically? I'm not sure. What are readers meant to learn about life--and, hopefully, themselves--by reading this?

Setting that aside, how does the book do purely as a story meant to entertain and evoke? It certainly evokes. This is a dark and disturbing story, and those elements are conveyed powerfully and effectively. It also invites engagement most effectively, with detailed art worth studying closely. And though there is a logic to it, the most accurate word to describe the plot is surreal. I felt pacing was a real issue. The first almost-half of the book is three apparently unrelated stories with virtually no explanation or exposition, followed by a text-heavy chapter that is all exposition, explaining everything that has come before and connecting it with the craziest fever-dream of a story imaginable. Then a chapter of existential despair, then a non-linear fever-dream chapter that again explains the connecting story without as much text and with a conclusion thrown in. That's followed by a few short epilogues that don't really illuminate things any further. It's quite a puzzle of a book, with many interesting pieces that never quite make a satisfying whole. It's a book meant to be experienced, I think, more than understood.

One other comment: Though the majority of the action is focused on young teens, I'm not sure the book is properly Young Adult. The deeper, connecting story is of a 35-year-old man reflecting on his life, and it's from him that most of the book's themes--and it's climactic chapter--emerge. If I were to classify this book, I'd put it in Adult.


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