This showed up in the mail at exactly the right moment – Graphic Novels, for me, are comfort reads. and this first volume of The Rema Chronicles was no different. I devoured it on the same day I got it, and it made a bad day into a much better one.
Many thanks to Kiran at Scholastic for sending me a review copy. All opinions are my own.
RELEASE DATE: 03/03/2022
STAR RATING: 4/5 ✶
SUMMARY: Tabby Simon is determined to learn what happened to her father, who was found dead after researching a tree that leaks a mysterious mist in her neighbourhood. She is unexpectedly led to Rema, a distant world of magic and beauty that is periodically invaded by a nearby planet desperate for resources. While Tabby searches for the truth surrounding her father’s death, she meets a handsome blue-haired boy named Philip. He has his own dangerous secrets, but he has promised to help Tabby get home. As Tabby learns more about this strange world, she discovers that she is destined for something far greater than she ever could have imagined. (from Scholastic)
OPINIONS: This is the latest in a series of comfort reads – as you can probably tell if you’ve been reading my recent reviews. And graphic novels somehow always end up in that category for me, especially ones that fit in the YA and MG space. The Rema Chronicles: Realm of the Blue Mist kind of slots in between the two categories. It has elements of both, and while Tabby, the main character is fifteen, it can easily be suitable for younger readers who are more used to a middle grade diet. The story is compelling – and there are turns to it that make me really eager to get my hands on the second volume (which I hope is coming soon *hint hint, Scholastic, please*).
I really liked Tabby, her stubbornness and curiosity. The way her relationship with Philip and the greater mythology of the world developed was really well-done, and I am curious to see where the story goes from here. While it took me a little bit to get settled with the world and the story – I felt the introduction was a bit clunky and the pacing in the first few chapters a bit off – once I did, I really enjoyed it. What first felt like a generic plot in a world that felt like most fantasy realms became more plastic once I got to the halfway mark and more characters made their way into the plot and Tabby got to be more than the vehicle that the reader sees this new world through.
I think as this graphic novel series goes on and Tabby’s story in the world continues, her relationships deepen and the reader learns more about the mythology behind it, we’ll have a really lovely series on our hands for that elusive teen audience most of all. It will appeal to readers ten and up, I think, but really be ideal for that demographic that often falls between YA and MG. A definite recommendation from me.