by Ru Xu
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Review copy provided by the publisher.
Release date: January 31, 2017
Content: The story line is a bit complex, but nothing that a 10+ year old could handle. It’ll be in the Middle Grade Graphic Novels section of the bookstore.
Blue is an orphan girl who disguises herself as a boy to deliver newspapers. There’s a war going on, and she loves working as a newsie for the Bugle, but she worries that once people find out she’s a girl she’ll be out of a job. Then, she discovers an absent minded inventor and a boy that’s a lot more than he seems, and all of a sudden people discovering she’s a girl is the least of her worries.
It took me a while to get into this (possibly because it was an advance copy and in black in white; I’ve discovered I like graphic novels better in color), but once I did, I was hooked. Blue’s a great character, and the world that Xu has created is this futuristic-retro thing. There’s a war between fictional countries, and there are robots and flying ships and super fast trains, and… newsies. It’s weird and wild and fun.
And I liked the friendship between Blue and Crow, the boy she meets, and how Blue’s willing to do just about anything to defend him. Also, the underlying feminism: Blue’s questioning of the way the system is, why she needs to disguise herself, and wanting the system itself to change.
It’s definitely only a start of a series, but it’s a strong start and a series I’ll definitely be paying attention to.