Curses! Foiled Again by Jane Yolen (Art by Mike Cavallaro)
Review by Lauren
copy sent for review, but all opinions are my own
Official Summary: Aliera Carstairs is back. This time she's got her cousin—and best friend—Caroline in tow, and the stakes are higher than ever. The realm of Seelie, the fairy kingdom of which Aliera is the hereditary defender, is under attack, and only Aliera and Caroline can set things right. Caroline, fragile and wheelchair-bound, may seem like more of a liability than an asset, but Aliera knows there's more to her quiet cousin than meets the eye. Curses! Foiled Again, a follow up to graphic novel Foiled! is Jane Yolen at her best, reunited with her partner in crime, the fabulously talented illustrator Mike Cavallaro.
Review: It's been awhile since I've read the first in this graphic novel series, Foiled, but Jane and Mike take a note from television and give readers a look back at what happened. It says Previously...and then you get a few pages that update you on what happened in the first book, so you are ready to go for the second! I'd still recommend reading this series in order, as they are fairly quick, but I suppose you could go right into this one if you wished.
Some things that I liked about this one-
The artwork is really well done and I liked that it's mostly black and white in the beginning...adding more and more color as the book progresses. The color added is mostly in conjunction with the fairy world, so if you see a creature, then they will be color, while Aliera is still black and white. Fairy world plays a larger part near the end, so most of those pages are all color. It's a nice idea; makes the book a bit unique.
Trolls are one of the fantasy creatures that you see a lot of in this one, and I thought that was nice. I don't read a lot of fantasy/paranormal books...but when I do, they tend to have the most basic of creatures like vampires and the like. Trolls are a nice change of pace!
I really liked seeing Caroline more, Aliera's cousin. She's in a wheelchair but that doesn't stop her from helping Aliera when she needs it. She's also much more positive and understanding than Aliera at times, so it's a welcome addition.
Some things I wasn't too fond of-
Now, I have to admit that Aliera frustrated me sometimes. Avery, a troll who must help Aliera, is often ignored by her. I can understand how she wouldn't always know who to trust and isn't sure about Avery...but he doesn't really seem the type to let her down, and he does keep trying to help her out. It got a bit annoying how badly she treated him at times. Avery isn't the smartest guy in the world, but he does prove his worth (which is another positive to the book!)
Overall, though, I did enjoy this one. I'm trying to read more graphic novels and it was nice to continue the series. It's a fast read (only took me a couple days) and I think a lot of people would find something to enjoy within its pages, both guys and girls.