Wednesday, September 21, 2016

REVIEW: Bera the On-Headed Troll by Eric Orchard

***(3) out of 5 stars

Bera is a humble troll, who minds her own business and grows pumpkins for the king in cheerful isolation on her little island.  Then one day she happens upon a human baby who needs rescuing.  Since everyone else in the land of the trolls wants the baby dead, there's nothing else for Bera to do except return the adorable little thing to the humans.  Like it or not, she's gone and found herself a quest, especially after all the heroes she tries to enlist to assist prove less than helpful.  Needless to say, Bera's life is never the same again.

I wasn't crazy about this graphic novel, even though I had heard many positive things about it and really wanted to like it.

The drawings are reminiscent of "Nightmare Before Christmas," and just not to my taste.  I found them messy and often hard to decipher.  Also, the weird color palette of only oranges, browns and whites gave a weird, surreal and rather depressing atmosphere to the entire work.

Many things, both big and small, are never explained.  For instance, there is talk among the main characters about the baby being stinky and what to do about it, and in the next scene they are mentioning that diapers were packed for an impending trip, with no explanation of how they came to figure this out.

The whole story just seems convoluted and unnecessarily confusing, and the whole endeavor just proves to be quite pointless in the end.  Still, Bera is quite a loveable character (especially for a troll), and you can't help but root for her to succeed in opposition to the formidable forces allied against her.

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