Cover Image: Zatanna: The Jewel of Gravesend

Zatanna: The Jewel of Gravesend

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Member Reviews

I love all these new DC characters being revamped and put in new situations! I love the cover art, and I love Zatanna as a character! Excellent!
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Alys Arden's Zatanna: The Jewel of Gravesend was paranormal YA perfection. It made my pulse run and heart shatter in equal measure. This was a wonderful reimagining of a classic DC character, which added new and interesting dimensions to her origin and mythos.

The elements I associate with and appreciate about Alys Arden's writing were crafted to delicious charm. I find people's relationship to places fascinating, so I really enjoyed the way the author built her characters in relation to the place they were - Zatanna and the people in her life in the carnival world of Coney Island. In this fictional world of a real place that is clearly distinguishable as Alys Arden's, she creates a fascinating plot of generational magical feuds with dark family secrets upending and threatening the main character's life and those of her loved ones.

Jacquelin de Leon's art serves as the perfect compliment to the worldbuilding and characterization. I especially loved the creative way in which the panels were arranged and the sense of movement they simulated. The story involved lots of instances of characters and objects moving in a variety of ways and the art design helped convey it very nicely.

I enjoyed the pacing of the story for the most part. However, the climax felt a little overwhelming to me, either because a lot seemed to be happening all at once and in quick succession. Regardless, the build up to it was very enjoyable and the punch that was served was very effective. The conclusion has me curious about where the story and the characters will go, and I eagerly look forward to the next book in the series!
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First, I LOVE LOVE LOVED the illustrations. Holy shit, they were gorgeous. And I really enjoyed the story! But SO MANY QUESTIONS STILL! Ugh, now I have to wait for a sequel!
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4/5 stars

Thank you to the publisher for the review copy.

I'm a big fan of Alys Arden's writing and the art for the graphic novel. I however don't remember much about Zatanna from when I used to read comics more regularly. This was a good graphic novel and a decent introduction to a not as well known Character
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DC's YA mediocrity is starting to get to me. There was some good ones to begin with and now they all tend to fall in the same inane middle ground. Origins are changed for no purpose really. If I go buy another DC comic with Zatanna in it, it's a completely different character. I get that I'm not the target audience, but what's the point if it's not to get people to read more DC comics?

This is about a rich teenage Zatanna Starr (It's not even the correct last name.) living at an elephant-shaped hotel at Coney Island. Her parents, Ezra and Lola, are illusionists with a show at their hotel, expecting their daughter to follow in their footsteps. Her boyfriend Alexei's parents run the local Russian mob in Brighton Beach (even though nothing ever comes of it which is how this book loves to operate. Just bring up random shit that doesn't matter instead of giving pages to an actual story.) After seeing another magician's show, she starts seeing mirror-script in the air that only she can read. (Zatanna's whole schtick is that she says sentences backwards to conjure spells.) The title Jewel is just some Macguffin that's never explained. It's just that Alexei needs it to succeed and apparently Zatanna has it in her chest because reasons. The ending is super-rushed and nothing is explained. It's all set up for a future comic instead that I probably won't ever read. (Nothing like reading a 200 page comic with no resolution.) Zatanna also has two token gay friends who are a couple but barely get any page-time.

The art is serviceable but doesn't stand out at all. She doesn't know how to draw teenagers though. They all have tiny little necks and huge heads. Everyone also looks the same age whether they are in high school or a parent.
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Such a fun Zatanna origin story! And the illustrations absolutely very lovely (definitely get Klaus, from Umbrella Academy, vibes with Ezra Starr and LOVE the mermaids). I definitely hope this will not stay a single volume tale, because I would love the story to continue.
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This was kind of a miss for me not going to lie, the fact that so many of the books from this YA imprint tend to just be origin stories means they are either a hit or a miss and this one just missed for me. As a casual DC reader I hadn't delved that deeply into Zantanna's backstory before this and it never once hindered my enjoyment of her character, I think we could have just as easily done something a little different with a little more depth and it would have been just as enjoyable.

I did like the art in this book. A lot of the other books from this imprint tend to stick with a simpler monochromatic color scheme, which looks nice but I did really appreciate how saturated everything was in this book. It was necessary I think for the story being told. I really don't think this book would have been able to stand on its own without that coloring, it really added to the magical feeling.
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This is a new book in the DC universe for younger readers, in this case YA. Zatanna comes from a magical family. Her father is a world-renowned illusionist and her mother his sidekick. Her family has always wanted her to go into the family business, but she has absolutely no desire. One of her best friends however would love to take her place. It’s the summer before senior year and it’s meant to be spent at Coney Island, on the beach, and with her friends. But it’ll be dangerous, dark, and a bit magical, when Zatanna learns she’s not who she always thought she was. This was an interesting story and I wonder if it is a new character or a preexisting one? Either way I thoroughly enjoyed it.  The art is fantastic, the color amazing, and overall, a joy to read. I need volume to right now.
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I'm only vaguely aware of the DC character Zatanna, so I don't know how true to her story this is, but I enjoyed it. There's twisty-turny intrigue, magical stuff, young love, and secrets all over the place, and while I did figure out the main secret (which, to be fair, will be obvious to readers familiar to Zatanna's origins), I didn't guess the hows and whys of what happened. Like I said, I don't know if this accurately portrays her origin story, but it definitely made me want to know more about her. The art was gorgeous, lots of blues, purples, and pinks with sparkly, glowy magic effects. The story is good; however, I found the secondary characters a bit two-dimensional, almost prop-like at times, and things got a bit rushed in the last bit, though these things didn't really detract much from my enjoyment of the story. I'd recommend this, and am hoping for another volume!

#ZatannaTheJewelofGravesend #NetGalley
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I ended up waiting for the physical release before reading it as I had issues with the quality on my kindle. 

This graphic novel was GORGEOUS. I loved how Zatanna's style was recognizable yet not hyper sexualized like she can be a lot of times in the main DC comics. The magical and mystery elements crafted this into an interesting, fun, and relaxing autumn read.
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I really enjoyed this - much more than other Zatanna origins that I've read before. The characters were great and the artwork was really fantastic. I really loved all the saturated colors that were used throughout the book as well. Overall, I think that this is one of the best introductions to Zatanna that I've read so far.
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I had a hard time putting this graphic novel down. We see a teenage Zatanna who doesn’t really have any powers yet. One day she begins to get some and it certainly changes her life forever. At first she wants to keep them a secret but eventually they come out. While this is happening some secrets come out of the darkness, ones about her childhood. As this graphic novel comes to a close Zatanna is left with more questions than answers
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'Zatanna: The Jewel of Gravesend' by Alys Arden with art by Jacquelin De Leon is a graphic novel of the superhero as a teenager.

Zatanna lives in Coney Island in a hotel that looks like a giant elephant.  Her parents are magicians, but Zatanna doesn't want anything to do with their act.  When she stumbles across a new magician with a mysterious way of writing backwards, it opens up the world for her and reveals secrets of a past she was unaware of.

I liked this story that supposes an origin for a hero I've always liked.  I felt like the art and lettering weren't up to the same quality, though.  I think it's a good read for teens and anyone, like me, who is a fan of Zatanna.
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Though I felt there were times when this fell flat,  either when the art just suffered and looked rushed or the script was more elementary and filler than anything, I still felt like overall it was a cute story.  I love the Zantanna character and always felt she was a crazy fun character that few knew about.  

Most of of the time,  the color of the art shine through and help to care the story. Zantanna depicted as this cute Gen Z goth witch girl was a perfect fit for her and I loved the world that was created around her from her friends and family to growing up at the Golden Elephant and working in the magic show. All these elements really help to give the building blocks of what make Zantanna "Zantanna".😜

Will it be as much of a hit as "Zantanna and the House of Secrets," I don't know but this book was delayed and kind of had more of a quiet opening. It should still find fans with those preteens looking for a story that has adventure and teenagey angst without too much drama

** Thank you to NetGalley and the publishers for the opportunity to review this advanced copy in exchange for my honest opinion **
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I adored this graphic novel and found the story unique and interesting as you follow Zatanna trying to uncover the big mystery behind her magic. The artwork and colors used were stunning and created a fun and unique storytelling experience.
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I have really been enjoying the DC YA books. This is maybe the best series DC is doing right now. Each one sits in its own universe and I love that. Fans of Zatanna will enjoy this and new readers will learn to love Zatanna. The art is spectacular. The colors are beautiful.  Thought it was rushed at the ending, but still, very, very good.
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Thanks to NetGalley & DC for the early copy in exchange for an honest review.

This is another graphic novel in a new line of comics aimed toward teens interested in DC characters--and it hits its mark. The colors are GORGEOUS, I love all the pinks and purples, the vividness of it all! It definitely actually feels like it's set on a boardwalk! 

The story's pretty interesting, I like the mystery being unraveled behind Zatanna's magic. I feel like the boyfriend is the weakest part of the story, he was pretty boring. Weirdly enough, his mom was more interesting than him...haha. Still, it was a pretty tight story and I hope there's more in this series!
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If you're looking for a quick, magical, quirky read, this one's for you! I loved getting to know Zatanna and follow her on her journey to discover who she is. The artwork is truly phenomenal and immediately drew me in. The colors and the style were beautiful and absolutely my favorite aesthetic. Give me all the pinks and purples! I hope we get more of this story because I'm definitely intrigued by Zatanna and I would love to see her learning to harness her magical abilities.
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First, lemme say, Zatanna, I want to steal your style. I feel like the artist went into the fashion index inside my head before drawing you. Serious vibes.

In Zatanna: The Jewel of Gravesend, a teenaged Zatanna is ready to spend her summer with her friends and boyfriend - the son of a mob family. Life has other plans. First, Zatanna's dad really wants her to start acting in his famous illusionist show. Second, Zatanna starts casting spells. Third, her boyfriend's mom is out to get her. Fourth, wait, is her dad even her real dad?!

This young adult adaptation is straight vibes. Romance, drama, aesthetics, magic, bunny on a leash, fame, flashbacks, & more!

Four stars for some disjointed storytelling. It was very hard to follow some of the events in flashbacks. Even with knowledge of Zatanna, I had to reread the flashback panels multiple times to fully understand the story.
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Zatanna: The Jewel of Gravesend is a DC Comics Young Adult graphic novel that features a teenaged Zatanna learning about who she truly is and where she comes from. This would probably be easier if her life wasn’t surrounded by magic mystery. This is a story that young fans new and old to the character will not want to miss!

Zatanna: The Jewel of Gravesend begins with Zatanna Starr getting ready to perform on stage. Unfortunately, being on stage is something that makes her nervous, which is why she plans on going to film school so she can be behind the camera. Zatanna’s parents Ezra and Lola Starr are a magician and magician’s assistant, so whether Zatanna really likes it or not, magic is in her blood… or is it? Zatanna lives in an area of Brooklyn, New York that features a carnival and various acts. Regardless of how Zatanna feels, she’s definitely surrounded by show business. To make things more complicated, her boyfriend Alexei is part of a family that is a long-time rival to her own.

Zatanna has quite a few questions, but the deeper she goes, she may find that she doesn’t like the answers. Are her parents really who they say they are? What is going on with Alexei’s family and how do they tie into what happened to a couple of people who are related to Zatanna? How did she get her newfound abilities and what do they mean? It’s certainly a lot for one young girl to figure out and the answers will change her life forever!

Zatanna: The Jewel of Gravesend was written by Alys Arden who is known for the Casquette Girls series. Alys writes a story that is relevant to teenagers today, but also is true to the magic and whimsy that is associated with Zatanna as a character. Her writing provides us with insight into a younger version of the Zatanna we are more familiar with, while also being a totally new and original story for the character.

The art is done by Jacquelin de Leon with Sam Lotfi. The art style consists of mostly of smooth solid lines. The colors are dark, but also soft with a concentration on shades of purple. (Purple of course is a color commonly used and associated with Zatanna.) There is a lot of movement within the panels with none of the characters feeling stagnant on the page. Also, the use of panels on top of a full page spread help to break up the uniformity of multiple panels per page. It is not boring to look at.

Zatanna: The Jewel of Gravesend overall is a very entertaining book with an interesting and fun story. Seeing Zatanna’s powers slowly come to her and Zatanna trying to learn about a past she had no idea about made this book an easy and fast read. I would highly recommend the graphic novel not only to teenagers, but to longtime fans and anyone interested in learning a bit about the character as well.

My full review can be found here:
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