Monday, October 12, 2009

graphic novel review: the surrogates by robert venditti

When the television spots for The Surrogates started airing a few weeks before it came out, I remembered from my fall movie preview that the film was based on a graphic novel. After seeing the previews, I wanted to read the book.

The Surrogates is set in 2052 in what is now called Central Georgia Metropolis (formerly Atlanta). Most people now live quiet lives in their homes and send out their surrogate to work and play, while their brains are hooked into the surrogate from home. People get to experience things without the possibility of death or injury. Other interesting twists tidbits: you choose what your surrogate looks like and some people elect a surrogate of another gender as a way to bypass sexual discrimination. It's futuristic science fiction told incredibly convincingly; it's easy to think it could be our not-so-distant future.

The concept is intriguing, and I really enjoyed the story. I was not, however, a fan of the drawing style. It didn't hinder my understanding or enjoyment of the story, but it certainly didn't enhance it. At the end of each chapter, there was an interesting supplemental item such as a newspaper article or promotional material encouraging you to buy a surrogate. As someone who doesn't read a lot of graphic novels, and thus has a hard time training my eyes to not dance all over the page, I appreciated these more traditional visual elements both as background and variety.

Rating: 4 stars (out of 5) - really good
Source: my local public library
Pages: 158
Publication: September 13, 2006

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