Expect tentacles and sea monsters, George Matsis
29 September 2020
This is a review of The Inkberg Enigma by New Zealand film maker Johnathan King. It is a new mystery graphic novel aimed at (I think) ages 10 – 14. It is a bit scary in places so if younger readers are brave, they will probably enjoy it too.
The story follows the adventures of our heroes Miro and Zia, two ordinary kids living in the fishing town called Aurora. Miro is a serious book lover and collector. He becomes friends with Zia when she saves him from some bullies. The two new friends discover a secret about their town and are then sent on a journey to find out the answer to the question they have been left with: “what the heck did we just see?” I don’t want to spoil anything for you but you can expect tentacles, sea monsters and more in this aquatic adventure! The story continues with the duo discovering more and more about what was seemingly a very normal fishing town. Spoiler alert – Aurora is not at all normal or boring!
I love the way the story plays out; it feels like with every page I read I found out more about the mysteries this sleepy little town hides. Excitingly, the way the story ends leaves room for a sequel, or even a prequel, to the book, including more information about the story and more of Miro and Zia’s quest for knowledge. There are lots of little hidden clues throughout the story which you only notice on a second reading.
I’ve always been a fan of graphic novels because they are so easy to read that you can read for hours without getting bored. This book does this really well; when I started reading, I couldn’t stop. The story and full colour images are just so engaging. The action is captured well in some great full-page drawings. The author cleverly uses black and white drawings when he is flashing back to tell some of the story in the past, as told in a ship’s journal, and colour in the present. This makes it easy to keep track of what is happening. The art style is really cool. It reminds me little bit of The Adventures of Tintin in style. And the story is a bit like Scooby Doo adventures with kids exploring mysteries and figuring out what the adults are up to.
I would recommend this book to people who enjoy mystery and/or graphic novels because this book is the perfect combination of both. I’ve never really delved much into the mystery genre (I mainly stick to fantasy/action) but I was very pleasantly surprised. I would definitely read a sequel.
George Matsis is 12 and lives in Wellington