The First Escape & The Secret of the Indigo Moon - by G.P. Taylor (Book 1 & 2 in The Dopple Ganger Chronicles).
Artwork by Daniel Boultwood, Joseph Sapulich, and Tony Lee.
Graphic Novel or Illustranovella
278 and 291 pages
Back cover of The First Escape: At Isambard Dunstan's School for Wayward Children, life is trouble for fourteen-year-old identical twins Sadie and Saskia Dopple and their friend, former thief Erik Morrissey Ganger. But what starts out as a perfectly normal day of food fights, rioting classmates, and (yawn) threats of expulsion goes suddenly and horribly wrong when a mysterious, wealthy woman appears at the school and adopts Saskia...without her sister.
So begins the adventures of Sadie, Saskia and Erik. Touted by the Heaven and Earth show on the BBC as "The new C.S. Lewis" I was a little disappointed after finishing the first book. Not to be deterred I decided to read the second book before doing my review. Here are my findings.
As a Writer...when I saw these books on the shelf I was immediately intrigued. Still being a kid at heart I loved the mixture of writing and pictures that Taylor had done. His writing has many tangible phrases in it which draw the reader into the book. The art work is fantastic and really draws you into the story. This is a wonderful hybrid for kids and adults as well to read.
As a Christian...I was excited to see something so innovative and new on the shelves for Christians. That being said, the story line is a little dark. It paints evil as well, evil. Although not gory or over explicit it does put the main characters in scary situations. I was a little disappointed after reading the first book as it seemed to have very little Christian themes in it. Not to be deterred I decided to give the second book a chance. I am glad that I did! In the first book there is very little to like about the mischievous protagonists, Sadie and Saskia. They go beyond the boundary of being merely naughty children. But the second book has exciting character development. Not to mention it contains much more of the Christian theme. So, if you are a brave reader looking for something new you may want to take a look. My only warning is not to stop at the first book. There are many more redeeming qualities in the second book.
As a Mother... I barely got through the first book before it was taken by my oldest child! I would recommend these books for older children due to frightening scenes. These books would appeal to those children who struggle to read as the excitement and artwork help them to make it through the books. Probably why the London Times calls it "Hotter than Potter."
I give this book .
You can check out the Dopple Ganger Chronicles website here.
G.P. Taylor's website is here.
I hope to read the final book shortly,
and I will review it on the blog as well.