Thursday, January 15, 2015

level up

level up
gene luen yang & thien pham
first second
published 2011

Dennis Ouyang lives in the shadow of his parents' high expectations.  They want him to go to medical school and become a doctor.  Dennis just wants to play video games - and he might actually be good enough to do it professionally.

But four adorable, bossy, and occasionally terrifying angels arrive just in time to lead Dennis back onto the straight and narrow: the path to gastroenterology.  It's all part of the plan, they tell him.  But is it?

Another coming of age sort of tale.  Dennis is wrestling with the expectations of his parents and his desire (and talent) for playing video games.  And seriously, what kid hasn't had to deal with this?  Along the way Dennis makes friends and falls in like with a girl who tries to set him straight when it comes to his destiny.  It isn't until he's faced with the broken promises of his father that Dennis starts to think for himself, but is it really the right kind of thinking?

The artwork is simple, but fitting.  The angels kind of reminded me of Powerpuff Girls.  Though I liked everything about this, I didn't love it the way I loved The Shadow Hero, but that's okay.  Can't love everything, right?

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