The visuals are deeply effective: entire sections are wordless, propelling the reader through dramatic scenes and inviting reflection during quiet, contemplative spots...Pencil, ink, and watercolor illustrations break out of loose panel structuring; sharp lines and shadow heighten tension and expanses of open white space sometimes draw the eye to a specific scene. This graphic novel will find a welcome home with fairy-tale fans who have outgrown the Disney version (or, less likely, the Grimm version) but still find the tale compelling.
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (starred review)
Phelan (Bluffton) delivers a spectacular 20th-century update of "Snow White," transplanting the story to Jazz Age and Depression-era New York City, where themes of jealousy, beauty, and power find a comfortable home...Moody gray and sepia panels carry the story forward, punctuated by splashes of lurid red for an animal heart, procured at a butcher s shop, or an apple tainted with a syringe. Snow s affectionate relationship with "the Seven," a group of street children, is among this adaptation s most potent elements. The boys are hesitant to tell Snow their names, but readers will want tissues on hand when they finally do.
Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Spanning the Roaring Twenties and the Great Depression, Phelan s noir-esque adaption of the classic fairy tale is atmospheric, clever, and touching...Especially resonant are the relationships that the heroine builds with her young protectors. The last few colorful pages will tug at heartstrings as Snow, the Seven, and an intrepid Detective Prince get their happy endings. A stunning, genre-bending graphic novel for all middle grade and middle school collections.
School Library Journal (starred review)
Phelan masterfully shifts a tale heavily reliant on magic and fantasy into a realistic and historical setting without compromising plausibility. Creating sweeping and dreamy watercolors that play with emotion and color, Phelan is an exquisite visual storyteller, and he lets expressive, wordless sequences carry a large portion of his interpretation. With a keen historical slant, a bit of action and intrigue, high visual interest, and the fairy-tale leaning, this will awe a wide readership. Brilliant.
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Pencil, ink, and watercolor images (in mostly sepia tones, with occasional spots of color: red for the poisoned apple, for example) move readers eyes across each page, providing an appropriately cinematic noir sensibility. This cinematic effect is further enhanced by the feel of constant movement, the varied panel sizes, and a judicious use of text. Some scenes are wordless; for others, Phelan uses varied fonts to enhance the drama. By the final wordless all- color sequence (spoiler: there is a happy ending), it is clear that this is an original and darkly beautiful take on the classic tale.
In a series of silent-movie-like vignettes, Phelan puts a Jazz Age spin on the classic tale of Snow White...Readers hungry for graphic adaptations of fairy tales will find their appetites slaked here.
Phelan s wonderfully expressive and realistic faces do most of the storytelling, and readers will linger on the dynamic structure of each page, as the artist s characteristic soft edges contrast with interesting page layouts...Fans of Brian Selznik s books will enjoy this one.
With atmospheric, largely monochrome watercolors, Mr. Phelan reworks the old story with chilly elegance but also tenderness of heart:
The Wall Street Journal
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