This is a whimsical and fantastic adventure set in an imaginary land. It has the feel of an early animation crossed with a classic fairy-tale. There is a childlike quality to it but it isn’t necessarily aimed at children.
We follow Fony Bone, his cousins, and the friends he makes along the way as they try and get out of the strange land they have become lost in. All sort of different creatures pop up and join in from dragons to tiny bugs. If you crossed the Wizard of OZ with the Dungeons and Dragons animated series you get an idea of the type of story being told.
The art is great, being purely black and white line drawings reminiscent of Usagi Yojimbo. It has the feel of a golden age animated short. The Bone characters are anthropomorphic with blobby bodies, big noses and quirky eyes but capable of great exaggerated expressions. It is quite a shock when traditional human figures are introduced. A lot of the story is told visually and a great deal of emotion is imparted by these clay-like figures. The lettering is also suitably bombastic too.
The tale is simple enough with no forced complexity or unnecessary convolutions. It has a simple timeline and wont tax you as a reader. What it has by the bucket load is charm. As soon as you meet this cast you care about them. You are drawn to them and the pages fly by as you can’t stop wanting to know more.
The perfect Thumbs Up!
Tomorrow: BONE – Book Two: The Great Cow Race – Jeff Smith