Tuesday, March 10, 2020

The Promised Neverland by Kaiu Shirai - ADVISABLE

The Promised Neverland (Volume 1) by Kaiu Shirai, 185 pages. GRAPHIC NOVEL. VIZ Media, 2018. $8.

Language: PG (4 swears, 0 “f”); Mature Content: PG; Violence: PG13



Even though none of the children at Grace Field House are related, these orphans have made each other family while waiting to be placed in foster homes. As the oldest at age 11, Emma, Norman, and Ray help take care of the younger kids. These three discover the real sinister purpose for the orphanage one night and start planning escape -- not just for them but, impossibly, for all 37 children.

Everything is light and beautiful until Emma and her friends’ discovery, and, from there, I was captivated. I love the contrast between not just in the introduction to the story and the harsh reality uncovered but in how everything continues to look idyllic after the dark secret is known; this juxtaposition makes all the scary things seem even more frightening and unpleasant. Finding a way to get my hands on the next volume is a must. The violence rating is for disturbing themes (not shown in illustrations but discussed) and death (the result is shown in illustrations but not the means).

Reviewer: Carolina Herdegen

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