Crawling with Zombies
The Hardy Boys "The New Case Files" Mysteries by Gerry Conway and Paulo Henrique
Review: Brothers Frank and Joe Hardy take on an assignment from A.T.A.C. to investigate a series of accidents that have occurred in "flash mobs" of teenagers in Zombie Crawl, the first in a new series of graphic novels featuring the teen detectives ("The New Case Files") by Gerry Conway and Paulo Henrique.
Their American Teens Against Crime contact gives them some background: "Most flash mobs are spontaneous, unplanned events involving popular bands, movie premieres, or the occasional political gathering … organized around a common theme. One of the most popular themes is what's known as a zombie crawl" where dozens of teens arrive at a specified location made-up to look like the walking dead. Except lately some of the participants have been acting strangely, even getting hurt, and it's up to Frank and Joe to discover why.
Readers unfamiliar with the characters created by Franklin W. Dixon (and there aren't likely to be many) are given a quick introduction to the brothers and their family in the opening pages of Zombie Crawl. The boys are depicted as both socially naive and somewhat introverted yet dynamic and resourceful. It isn't as contradictory as it may seem, and gives them more realistic personalities as characters. They taunt each other and bicker as well, sometimes too frequently, which rapidly gets annoying (though to be fair, sets up the ending). The case is interesting, is quickly developed and resolved, a nice touch since the book can be read as a stand-alone. It does end with something of a cliffhanger, however, enticing readers to buy the next in the series.
The graphics are bright and colorful, often with lots of action, and make a positive contribution to the narrative. The only shortcoming is that Frank and Joe are nearly unrecognizable from chapter to chapter, sometimes page to page, their age and facial appearance changes seemingly arbitrarily, the only common element throughout being the color of their hair. It's always obvious who they are, still, a more consistent approach to drawing them would have been welcome.
Acknowledgment: Lissy Peace and Associates provided a copy of Crawling with Zombies for this review.
Review Copyright © 2011 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Location(s) referenced in Crawling with Zombies: None
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Crawling with Zombies by Gerry Conway and Paulo Henrique — The Hardy Boys "The New Case Files" Mysteries
Publication Date: October 2010
List Price: $10.99
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Page Author: Lance Wright
Site Publisher: Mysterious Reviews
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