The Comic Book War

cover art

The Comic Book War is a Canadian novel set during World War 2. It explores some of the hardships faced in Canada at that time. The stresses of having family members in the war, supply shortages, and the pressure to dedicate all of your energy and funds to the war effort all featured heavily.

I have to say I find the premise of this to be too juvenile for teens. A delusional boy who feels that reading comics keeps his brothers safe on the battlefield because of a piece of meteor he wears around his neck is just not sophisticated enough for contemporary teens. I think maybe 10-12 year-olds would enjoy it if they are from old fashioned families and are interested in both history and comics. That’s a very specific niche.

Maybe it’s because it’s not a time period I know extensively but I found the dialogue really unrealistic. Did people ever really use the corny expressions that are only used sarcastically in the modern world? I think the “golly gee” factor will alienate most teen readers.

The plot was predictable. I guessed the fate of key characters, and a few “big reveal” moments fell flat because I was anticipating them.

That being said, it was an easy read that could potentially fill the void of things to read aloud to an ailing grandparent, or listen to as a family on a car trip. It’s juvenile but might appeal to the elderly who want to share part of their lives with another generation. While I can’t see many teens I know reading this independently it could serve as a family bonding exercise.

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