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Gunnerkrigg Court, Volume 1: Orientation

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Antimony Carver is a precocious and preternaturally self-possessed young girl starting her first year of school at gloomy Gunnerkrigg Court, a very British boarding school that has robots running around along side body-snatching demons, forest gods, and the odd mythical creature. The opening volume in the series follows Antimony through her orientation year: the people she Antimony Carver is a precocious and preternaturally self-possessed young girl starting her first year of school at gloomy Gunnerkrigg Court, a very British boarding school that has robots running around along side body-snatching demons, forest gods, and the odd mythical creature. The opening volume in the series follows Antimony through her orientation year: the people she meets, the strange things that happen, and the things she causes to happen as she and her new friend, Kat, unravel the mysteries of the Court and deal with the everyday adventures of growing up. Tom Siddell's popular and award-winning web comic (www.gunnerkrigg.com) is here collected in print for the first time.


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Antimony Carver is a precocious and preternaturally self-possessed young girl starting her first year of school at gloomy Gunnerkrigg Court, a very British boarding school that has robots running around along side body-snatching demons, forest gods, and the odd mythical creature. The opening volume in the series follows Antimony through her orientation year: the people she Antimony Carver is a precocious and preternaturally self-possessed young girl starting her first year of school at gloomy Gunnerkrigg Court, a very British boarding school that has robots running around along side body-snatching demons, forest gods, and the odd mythical creature. The opening volume in the series follows Antimony through her orientation year: the people she meets, the strange things that happen, and the things she causes to happen as she and her new friend, Kat, unravel the mysteries of the Court and deal with the everyday adventures of growing up. Tom Siddell's popular and award-winning web comic (www.gunnerkrigg.com) is here collected in print for the first time.

30 review for Gunnerkrigg Court, Volume 1: Orientation

  1. 4 out of 5

    Cristina Monica

    What a mysterious school. Well, this is no Harry Potter for sure, but Gunnerkrigg Court is very much magical also and full of secrets. I won’t lie, I definitely want to enroll in this school. I may be too old, but maybe in another life, who knows. There are robots, ghosts, talking animals, dragons, dragonslayers, demons… I mean, one can only wonder how these all come together… Well that’s what’s so peculiar about this graphic novel. It seems as though it’s a mix of quite random elements that make What a mysterious school. Well, this is no Harry Potter for sure, but Gunnerkrigg Court is very much magical also and full of secrets. I won’t lie, I definitely want to enroll in this school. I may be too old, but maybe in another life, who knows. There are robots, ghosts, talking animals, dragons, dragonslayers, demons… I mean, one can only wonder how these all come together… Well that’s what’s so peculiar about this graphic novel. It seems as though it’s a mix of quite random elements that make this world-building. But somehow… it works. Somehow it’s strange, but in a way that makes you eager to read more. Antimony’s mother died, and her mother’s last wish was for her to finish her studies at Gunnerkrigg Court. So she is here. And while other students seem to accept the strangeness of this place with a shrug, Antimony is a curious young lady who wants to understand her surroundings. Also, unhuman souls seem to gravitate around her. This is a story like no other. Seriously, I’m trying hard to connect it to another graphic novel series I have read, or maybe even a book series, but the only one I can loosely relate it to is Harry Potter, and even so, these two are COMPLETELY different works. (Available online for free as a webcomic: http://www.gunnerkrigg.com/) Blog | Youtube | Twitter | Instagram | Google+ | Bloglovin’

  2. 4 out of 5

    David Schaafsma

    I know some of my Goodreads friends and I will have to disagree here, but I—late to this party—am not enthralled by this comics series, originally a web-comic. The story takes place at a British boarding school, Gunnerkrigg Court, a science school where Antimony Carver, whose Mom has just died, is a new student. I love Harry Potter, another British boarding school series, but I am generally not a fantasy fan. This one does have magic and mystery, and robots, and a bff Kat who is kinda cool, but I know some of my Goodreads friends and I will have to disagree here, but I—late to this party—am not enthralled by this comics series, originally a web-comic. The story takes place at a British boarding school, Gunnerkrigg Court, a science school where Antimony Carver, whose Mom has just died, is a new student. I love Harry Potter, another British boarding school series, but I am generally not a fantasy fan. This one does have magic and mystery, and robots, and a bff Kat who is kinda cool, but maybe it is because this volume is “orientation” that I am kind of impatient; instead of getting right into a story it is mostly set-up and exposition. And there’s a kind artistic development that goes on from the earlier comics to the later ones, though I am generally not a fan of this cartoonish computer-generated glossy art. Okay, the characters are kinda cute, I guess. I like how she has a second shadow and her room at school includes an entire meadow. I like it when it seems to indicate it might get a bit darker in tone. Does it, later? Is it worth my time to continue? Here, you can read it here free online, in case you are intrigued: http://www.gunnerkrigg.com/archive_pa...

  3. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca McNutt

    With themes similar to the Harry Potter book series, Gunnerkrigg Court is a spectacular graphic novel with everything from friendship to fantastic mythical creatures. The author's art style is amazing, too. :)

  4. 4 out of 5

    Kathryn

    I don't usually read graphic novels, but I really liked the sound of this one and it received such a glowing review from one of my GoodReads friends that I couldn't resist, especially since parts of it fit in nicely around Halloween (the book has nothing to do with Halloween but a few of the characters and scenarios are a little spooky/mysterious). Unfortunately, I didn't have as much time to read this as I planned to and had to wait several weeks between reading the first half and the second ha I don't usually read graphic novels, but I really liked the sound of this one and it received such a glowing review from one of my GoodReads friends that I couldn't resist, especially since parts of it fit in nicely around Halloween (the book has nothing to do with Halloween but a few of the characters and scenarios are a little spooky/mysterious). Unfortunately, I didn't have as much time to read this as I planned to and had to wait several weeks between reading the first half and the second half. Thus, I think a few things weren't totally clear but I will chalk this up to my hiatus rather than any fault of the author. There is a great deal of humor and wit and some very charming scenes along with some more mysterious-- a bit of the occult, a bit of steampunk-y robot stuff, new twists on traditional "magical creatures" like faeries, all tied together in a boarding school setting. The characters, especially the two main friends, Kat and Annie, really stand out and the art is a treat. All in all, very enjoyable.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Chad

    Antimony Carver is sent to on odd school supposedly for science. But fairies, dragons and demons and other magical elements soon raise their heads. This reminds me a lot of Harry Potter if JJ Abrams had gotten a hold of it. There is mystery box after mystery box introduced but we don't get any answers in this volume. The writing is a little all over the map too. But this was originally a web comic so hopefully this will become more focused. The relationship between Antimony and her best friend K Antimony Carver is sent to on odd school supposedly for science. But fairies, dragons and demons and other magical elements soon raise their heads. This reminds me a lot of Harry Potter if JJ Abrams had gotten a hold of it. There is mystery box after mystery box introduced but we don't get any answers in this volume. The writing is a little all over the map too. But this was originally a web comic so hopefully this will become more focused. The relationship between Antimony and her best friend Kat is pretty great. I did like it well enough to move onto book two.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Heidi

    This review was written as a series review for Gunnerkrigg Court: Holy crap guys. You know when one of your reading buddies pushes something on you and you’re all: “Yeah, yeah, I’ll get to it when I get to it”? Because maybe, just maybe, sometimes you should get to it faster. Flannery of The Readventurer has been mentioning the web comic turned graphic novel series, Gunnerkrigg Court to me since the turn of the year, and while I think 6 months to actually pick something up and read it isn’t bad f This review was written as a series review for Gunnerkrigg Court: Holy crap guys. You know when one of your reading buddies pushes something on you and you’re all: “Yeah, yeah, I’ll get to it when I get to it”? Because maybe, just maybe, sometimes you should get to it faster. Flannery of The Readventurer has been mentioning the web comic turned graphic novel series, Gunnerkrigg Court to me since the turn of the year, and while I think 6 months to actually pick something up and read it isn’t bad for my track record, I’m still kicking myself for not doing so sooner. But also praising myself a bit, because let’s face it, now I barely have to wait to pick up Volume 4 in a hardcopy as it releases tomorrow! Gunnerkrigg Court contains so many stunning elements that I’m still a bit slack-jawed over the whole thing. The basic premise is this: Our girl, Antimony, is dumped Pushing Daisies style into a mysteriously massive boarding school known as Gunnerkrigg Court (or just “the Court” as they say on the streets) after her mother passes away. The school has a strong focus on the sciences–a need to explain things–but also a tacit acknowledgement that science may be unable to explain everything. There’s a certain air of magic about the place, which Antimony uncovers by coming face to face with the supernatural and the mythological as she and her friend Kat stumble about the enigmatic world of the Court. Okay, so, I’m not gonna lie–I was really disappointed at first. Our lead, Antimony, is a total Mary Sue, and I didn’t get that in to the first volume. However, it did seem to be setting up for an interesting story arc toward the end, and since they take all of an hour or so to read, I decided to pick up volume two, and fell completely in love. I realized that everything I was a bit ho-hum about in volume one had a reason. Each awkward meeting or item was born of necessity, working to lay the groundwork for what would become a very complex and interwoven tale throughout the following chapters of Antimony’s story. I even became so engrossed in finding out the real history of Gunnerkrigg Court and the forest that lays beyond its boundaries that I completely forgot that I hadn’t liked Antimony all that much to begin with. There are so many other wonderful characters taking up page room, that you kind of quit caring that she’s gorgeous, intelligent, and Practically Perfect in Every Way. Here’s a bit of the awesomeness: Antimony hangs out with Renard (who you may know as the fox), who just happens to be trapped in her stuffed wolf’s body and has some anger management issues. Her best friend, Kat, is a veritable genius when it comes to robots. Antimony’s pals with a ghost, all the psychopomps, and has potential as a medium. She’s also welcome to hang out with Coyote in the forest. Everyone loved her mom, particularly her crush-worthy games teacher. Plus, there’s all sorts of magic, mystery, and student mischief to be had. Thomas Siddell has a wonderful humor which he’s able to slip into every gap in the story–constantly lightening the mood after a serious scene or making me laugh between chapters. For instance, did you ever need some advice on how to ward off amorous robots? Oh–and I love the art. Siddell’s style changes from the first volume to later installments, and I honestly much preferred the change. I love a very cartoony art style, and have found many panels to be incredibly captivating, fun, and beautiful. His drawing has a humor about it, but also a deep understanding and respect for how these characters would work with the world around them, and how their images should reflect the cultures they represent: He also does this gorgeous bit with Antimony’s hair whenever she’s in a dream state that I find breathtaking: So really. If you enjoy web comics or graphic novels at all, Gunnerkrigg Court is worth checking out. I was able to get the first three volumes from my library, though you can read the entire series online for free here. I have a feeling that once you do, you’ll be wanting to support Thomas Siddell by buying merchandise or picking up the graphic novels in hardcopy. While I was initially disappointed, I moved quickly to astounded by how utterly complex and well-plotted this story has been since the beginning. Every time you think a bit of the story is just for fun, or won’t have an affect in the future–think again, because it does. I’m a little bit in love with Antimony’s world (particularly Renard); the Court is full of mystery, fun, and adventure that will delight readers to no end. At least I hope there’s no end… Original review posted at Bunbury in the Stacks.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Abigail

    This graphic novel/comic book, which marks the first print appearance of the award-winning Gunnerkrigg Court webcomic, is an absolute delight! I was drawn immediately into the adventures of its young heroine, Antimony Carver, as she begins to explore the world of Gunnerkrigg Court, the strange and magical boarding school to which she has been sent. From the very first chapter, in which Antimony discovers that the second shadow she has gained, since arriving at school, is a being who needs help r This graphic novel/comic book, which marks the first print appearance of the award-winning Gunnerkrigg Court webcomic, is an absolute delight! I was drawn immediately into the adventures of its young heroine, Antimony Carver, as she begins to explore the world of Gunnerkrigg Court, the strange and magical boarding school to which she has been sent. From the very first chapter, in which Antimony discovers that the second shadow she has gained, since arriving at school, is a being who needs help returning to his home across the river, in Gillitie Wood, I was in love - with the characters, the setting, the artwork, and the magically matter-of-fact happenings. There is a surreal quality to the storytelling that works very well, making the reader/viewer comfortable with not knowing everything (or much of anything, really) about the mysterious court. Of course, as the story unfolds, we learn more: about the many marvelous aspects of the "school" (is it really just a school?) itself, from the fabulous old library, with its hidden door into a Minotaur-inhabited labyrinth, to its massive robotic department; about the history of the students and teachers (many of whom were once students themselves); and about the residents (one of them a god) of Gillitie Wood. We also, together with Antimony, meet and befriend Kat Donlon, confront Reynardine the body-snatching demon, and have close encounters with everything from ghosts to fairies. I raced through this, enjoying both the story and the art - I loved the dark backgrounds, the expressive faces, even the thick, glossy paper - and immediately sought out the second installment, Gunnerkrigg Court, Volume 2: Research . If that's not high praise, I don't know what is! I hope to continue enjoying the story of Gunnerkrigg Court for some time (I suspect I will become a regular lurker over on their site), and think I may need to own these! I've never felt that way about a comic book/graphic novel before...

  8. 4 out of 5

    Marta

    This graphic novel turned out to be for a younger audience than I anticipated, but I quickly got over it and enjoyed the charming art, cute characters and imaginative storyline. Antimony has a magical inheritence (this is not the particularly original part), and keeps befriending various creatures, from a shadow through a robot to fairies. Her friendship with Kat is heartfelt and cute. They go through normal kid stuff, too, and grieve for Antimony’s mom, who recently died. Oh, and there is a dem This graphic novel turned out to be for a younger audience than I anticipated, but I quickly got over it and enjoyed the charming art, cute characters and imaginative storyline. Antimony has a magical inheritence (this is not the particularly original part), and keeps befriending various creatures, from a shadow through a robot to fairies. Her friendship with Kat is heartfelt and cute. They go through normal kid stuff, too, and grieve for Antimony’s mom, who recently died. Oh, and there is a demon trapped in a stuffed dog toy. The art is very cute and pretty, but dark, as it is printed on gorgeous, shiny black paper. I am going to read the next one, too.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Mike

    This volume collects the first fourteen chapters of the webcomic Gunnerkrigg Court. Antimony Carver has just started school midway through first year at Gunnerkrigg Court, which feel more like an industrial complex run amuck with creatures and oddities of all sorts than a school per se. This volume follows her early school experiences, including finding a best friend, some potential enemies, and a lot of unanswered questions. The comic gets off to a very odd start. The first chapter just kind of t This volume collects the first fourteen chapters of the webcomic Gunnerkrigg Court. Antimony Carver has just started school midway through first year at Gunnerkrigg Court, which feel more like an industrial complex run amuck with creatures and oddities of all sorts than a school per se. This volume follows her early school experiences, including finding a best friend, some potential enemies, and a lot of unanswered questions. The comic gets off to a very odd start. The first chapter just kind of throws a bunch of weird things at the reader in a slightly absurd manner with Antimony appearing to react (or rather not react) in a very unintuitive way. The art also takes some getting used to. It's very good, but has a distinct style and very pronounced angle on faces in partial profile. But the storytelling smoothes out very quickly. By the third chapter I was completely hooked, and it only gets better from there. Antimony is actually a pretty deep character we're only seeing the surface of, and there are reasons why the weirdness of her new school doesn't phase her as much as we might expect. There are a lot of intriguing interwoven mysteries, the humor is pitch perfect, and the characters and plots are nicely multi-layered. On top of the quality of the comic itself, the production values of the printed version are incredible. It's a hardbound "regular book sized" edition with excellent paper stock and vivd printing. Overall Gunnerkrigg Court is phenomenal stuff. Once it gets going it's extremely engaging and lovably quirky and weird. Can't wait to read more. Highly recommended. 1/29/13

  10. 5 out of 5

    Stewart Tame

    Oh yes! This is an amazingly good series. Excellent fantasy, but not the typical dragons and swords stuff that most people think of when they hear the term. Reading this, I get the same thrill of discovery that I got reading Neil Gaiman for the first time. Antimony Carver is a student at Gunnerkrigg Court, a school seemingly devoted to the sciences, but with some hidden secrets. Make that a LOT of hidden secrets. The school is a sprawling, maze-like building seemingly surrounded by a vast forest Oh yes! This is an amazingly good series. Excellent fantasy, but not the typical dragons and swords stuff that most people think of when they hear the term. Reading this, I get the same thrill of discovery that I got reading Neil Gaiman for the first time. Antimony Carver is a student at Gunnerkrigg Court, a school seemingly devoted to the sciences, but with some hidden secrets. Make that a LOT of hidden secrets. The school is a sprawling, maze-like building seemingly surrounded by a vast forest, and it soon becomes apparent that the creatures of the forest seem to be at war with the Court. And there's magic. And robots. And fairies. And ghosts. And Coyote. Yes. THAT Coyote. This is excellent work that everybody should be reading. Neil Gaiman fans will kick themselves for not reading this sooner ... if they're not already reading it that is. So good!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Michelle Witte

    Originally posted at Libri Ago. I've been fascinated for a while now with the fusion of text and graphics that comprise graphic novels. The problem I find is that most comics and graphic novels are geared toward a male audience. While it's great that there are books for the numerous guys who are reluctant readers, I wish there were more graphic novels that appealed to women—especially women who are strong, smart, and dress in actual clothes. So I was ecstatic when I found Gunnerkrigg Court, a cap Originally posted at Libri Ago. I've been fascinated for a while now with the fusion of text and graphics that comprise graphic novels. The problem I find is that most comics and graphic novels are geared toward a male audience. While it's great that there are books for the numerous guys who are reluctant readers, I wish there were more graphic novels that appealed to women—especially women who are strong, smart, and dress in actual clothes. So I was ecstatic when I found Gunnerkrigg Court, a captivating series of graphic novels for teen girls. In the first volume, Orientation, Antimony Carver arrives at the gloomy Gunnerkrigg Court, a British boarding school that looks more like a factory than a school. Sounds normal enough, but that illusion fades within the first few pages as strange things start to happen. Soon enough Antimony discovers that her parents—her mother recently deceased and her father missing—are intricately tied to this school and the mysteries that surround it. Events at Gunnerkrigg may even hold the key to understanding what happened to her parents. Antimony's world is a dark one populated with robots, demons, and forest gods, but it also one in which she and her pre-teen classmates can still have fun. This isn't a humorous book by any means, but there is a quirkiness to the situations and scenes that give it a certain kind of depth I've only found in graphic novels. The best comparison I can make is to Emily the Strange, another graphic novel series* I absolutely adore. As with Emily the Strange, there's something youthful but dark about the illustrations that I find fascinating. While some of the chapters in this volume feel a bit episodic—which makes sense considering the series started out as a web comic—enough of the the overarching plot threads are woven throughout that it all fits together well. This volume ends much like the Harry Potter books: at the end of the school year but with enough mystery to propel readers immediately into the next book. * There is a series of books for teens featuring Emily the Strange that are mainly text-based but with graphic elements. The original graphic novels are much darker, though just as compelling, and fit more into the traditional comic style.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Sesana

    This is a collection of the first 14 chapters of the online comic Gunnerkrigg Court. I love online comics, they're about the only ones I read anymore. I don't remember now what brought the collected book to my attention, and what made me read the book instead of just going online and reading the comic itself, but I'm glad I did. It's a good presentation. As for the comic itself... Well, I'm working on catching up on it from chapter 15 onwards now. I really like the art style, which has always be This is a collection of the first 14 chapters of the online comic Gunnerkrigg Court. I love online comics, they're about the only ones I read anymore. I don't remember now what brought the collected book to my attention, and what made me read the book instead of just going online and reading the comic itself, but I'm glad I did. It's a good presentation. As for the comic itself... Well, I'm working on catching up on it from chapter 15 onwards now. I really like the art style, which has always been important for me in a comic. Ugly and generic art is one of the reasons I've drifted away from comics in the first place. I also like the characters, and the story is shaping up nicely. It was a bit of a hodgepodge of stuff at the start, but it always seemed to work, and it seems like the author has settled in to a story (but still with a lot of nice side stuff).

  13. 4 out of 5

    Raina

    Very smartly written webcomic. Annie and Kat's adventures are very episodic, yet connect and weave and do tell one long story. Basically it's the cartoon-style story of two girls living in a mythical boarding school, rife with dragons, demons, mechanical birds, illusions, and talking shadows. It's a great hodgepodge of things that this author thinks are cool, which roughly correspond to current hot topics. Accessible illustration style, accessible characters, accessible format - they all come to Very smartly written webcomic. Annie and Kat's adventures are very episodic, yet connect and weave and do tell one long story. Basically it's the cartoon-style story of two girls living in a mythical boarding school, rife with dragons, demons, mechanical birds, illusions, and talking shadows. It's a great hodgepodge of things that this author thinks are cool, which roughly correspond to current hot topics. Accessible illustration style, accessible characters, accessible format - they all come together to make this an incredibly accessible tale of some VERY WEIRD THINGS.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Mir

    Monsters! Robots! Ghosts! Mythical creatures of all sorts! Challenging coursework! Awesomeness! Also, free! http://www.gunnerkrigg.com/archive_pa... Monsters! Robots! Ghosts! Mythical creatures of all sorts! Challenging coursework! Awesomeness! Also, free! http://www.gunnerkrigg.com/archive_pa...

  15. 4 out of 5

    Gwen (The Gwendolyn Reading Method)

    I liked this. Not sure if I liked it enough to continue on, it's definitely for younger readers, but will definitely be recommending to any kids I come across!

  16. 5 out of 5

    David

    This is the first collected volume of the popular web comic Gunnerkrigg Court. I had never read the web comic before, and only picked this book up because I happened to see it sitting on a shelf in the library and I had heard of the web comic. Yeah, some of my reads are totally random like that. Gunnerkrigg Court is a Hogwarts-like private school somewhere in Britain, surrounded by a mysterious forest that contains everything from robot parrots to ghosts and faeries to the trickster god Coyote. T This is the first collected volume of the popular web comic Gunnerkrigg Court. I had never read the web comic before, and only picked this book up because I happened to see it sitting on a shelf in the library and I had heard of the web comic. Yeah, some of my reads are totally random like that. Gunnerkrigg Court is a Hogwarts-like private school somewhere in Britain, surrounded by a mysterious forest that contains everything from robot parrots to ghosts and faeries to the trickster god Coyote. The main character is a girl named Antimony Carver, who bears enough similarities to Harry Potter for the resemblance to be more than coincidental. The students at Gunnerkrigg Court are not wizards, though there's enough magic and technology floating around that hardly anyone can be assumed to be a "Muggle." That this started as an amateur web comic shows - the art is not bad, though certainly nothing remarkable, manga-inspired like all the kids are drawing these days. The setting is full of everything and the kitchen sink, and while Siddell seems to be doing a lot of worldbuilding here, it's not clear how much is planned and how much was "Hey, robot parrots! And... and a demon trapped in the body of a stuffed animal! And... tree-spirit-things..." and whatever else crossed his mind. However, he's certainly working on some long-term plotlines. A lot of characters are established, most of whom have some history with Antimony's parents. (Antimony's mother is dead and her father has Mysteriously Vanished.) This volume tells the story of Antimony's first year, at the end of which hardly any of the many mysteries raised have been answered. We have little idea about the whos, whats, or whys of all the weirdness. The reason I liked it enough to consider reading on is the chemistry between the two girl characters: Antimony and her best friend Kat. Kat is a dorky scientific genius and the emotional counterpart to Antimony's cool, almost humorless demeanor. The two of them are both quite charming in their own way, and if there is one thing Sidwell gets right, it's their friendship. That and the fact that I'd like to see if the author really has worked out some grand, overarching metaplot he's going to bring to fruition, since he's clearly mining J.K. Rowling territory. 3.5 stars. The art is only so-so; the setting and story is disorganized but interesting, and the characters are cute.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Kayt O'Bibliophile

    Gorgeous colors! Fun characters! An interesting and very intriguing setting! Humor! Sarcasm! Free to read online as well! You have no excuse not to be reading Gunnerkrigg Court. GK is one of my favorite webcomics (www.gunnerkrigg.com) and the first 14 chapters are compiled in this beautiful hardback. I hadn't read it for a while, but I love how this balances beautifully between having an overarching story and making individual chapters a little episodic. I love art, and it was fun to watch Tom Si Gorgeous colors! Fun characters! An interesting and very intriguing setting! Humor! Sarcasm! Free to read online as well! You have no excuse not to be reading Gunnerkrigg Court. GK is one of my favorite webcomics (www.gunnerkrigg.com) and the first 14 chapters are compiled in this beautiful hardback. I hadn't read it for a while, but I love how this balances beautifully between having an overarching story and making individual chapters a little episodic. I love art, and it was fun to watch Tom Siddell's style change even within the first few chapters. The only thing I was a little disappointed with was the lack of any extras--early character design sketches, maybe, or a one-page comic; something that you can't get online as a little bonus. Still, with a story this good, it really doesn't need anything else.

  18. 5 out of 5

    kels

    Gunnerkrigg Court is a collection of the webcomic of the same name (which I did not know until I was purchasing from my local comic shop, so there you go!), and it's pretty fantastic. I love the art style, and the story is intriguing. Antimony is a bit of a Mary Sue, but hey - nobody badmouthed Harry Potter for being a Larry Stu. And speaking of Harry Potter, man there are more than a few nods in this comic. It almost feels like fanfiction (which is in no way meant as a disparagement - I love fa Gunnerkrigg Court is a collection of the webcomic of the same name (which I did not know until I was purchasing from my local comic shop, so there you go!), and it's pretty fantastic. I love the art style, and the story is intriguing. Antimony is a bit of a Mary Sue, but hey - nobody badmouthed Harry Potter for being a Larry Stu. And speaking of Harry Potter, man there are more than a few nods in this comic. It almost feels like fanfiction (which is in no way meant as a disparagement - I love fanfic.)

  19. 5 out of 5

    Mehsi

    Well, that was a confusing read, and I probably won't be reading the rest of this series. The story, while connected at times, felt more like it went around hotchpotch and willy nilly. At times I was just bored out of my mind because the story just went from one thing to another. I don't mind short stories, I don't mind short chapters, but this was just meh. And then at times it all connected again, or something happened that had to do with earlier stuff and it became a bit more interesting. We Well, that was a confusing read, and I probably won't be reading the rest of this series. The story, while connected at times, felt more like it went around hotchpotch and willy nilly. At times I was just bored out of my mind because the story just went from one thing to another. I don't mind short stories, I don't mind short chapters, but this was just meh. And then at times it all connected again, or something happened that had to do with earlier stuff and it became a bit more interesting. We also get some explanations on how the system works, but I still have a lot of questions on how things work. What is this school? How do you get to it? Are there also elementary schools? Universities? What are all these houses we saw when the girls were flying? And several, several more. The characters, yes characters, while Kat is a side-character, I still see her as more of a main character since she is around so much and plays such an important role in this book. Antimony or Annie (no clue how we go from Antimony to Annie, but OK), she was an ok character and had quite a past with a mom who died, a dad who likes disappearing. As the book continues we slowly find out more about her, but also about her mom. Antimony doesn't shy away from doing things her way, for instance making a robot to help a friend, or going out to a dangerous part to meet a friend. At times I found it foolish, at times I found it great. Great that she went through such lengths for a friend, foolish that she would do all that and risk her life so many times. Kat was a really interesting character, she seems the most human and while she does like electronics, I could mostly understand her the most. At the surface she looks like just any teenage girl, swooning over teachers or men/boys, giggling and blushing, but deep down she is truly an inventor and she makes some epic stuff that I don't see anyone else make. It is amazing and I really liked Kat more and more with each passing page. She truly cares about Antimony and wishes to help her out. Be it by lending her a shoulder when the past gains in on Antimony, or to help her out when she is in danger. Her inventions are really great and I love that she can rebuild stuff to make them even better. Now comes the one thing that comics/graphic books lean heavily on, the art (at least in my opinion it does). And I have to say this is a big reason why I deducted points. The art (sorry to say, and I don't mean to offend anyone, just giving my honest opinion), is ugly. At times Antimony would have wounds that disappear and appear with each page. Or wounds that just disappear instantly. Sometimes the art looks pretty nice (during some close-ups), but most of it is just not good. People that are far away just reduce to barely recognizable blobs with (if they are lucky) two circles as eyes. It is a true shame, I was looking forward to checking out this book when I saw it in my GR recommendations field. The blurb sounded pretty good, the cover looked OK, and I was looking forward to it. Would I recommend this one? No. I wouldn't. Review first posted at http://twirlingbookprincess.com/

  20. 4 out of 5

    Aydan

    This graphic novel is wonderful. It's all about a girl who went to a boarding school. At this boarding school she discovered hundreds of cool, mysterious things. One night she meets a spirit named Reynarodine. I can't tell you anymore because I will spoil it. This book has a balanced mix of mild humor, scary parts, and fantasy. I recommend this book to anyone who like mystery and fantasy. I liked this book over all but I think it need jumps around to much. It seems to have more than one plot lin This graphic novel is wonderful. It's all about a girl who went to a boarding school. At this boarding school she discovered hundreds of cool, mysterious things. One night she meets a spirit named Reynarodine. I can't tell you anymore because I will spoil it. This book has a balanced mix of mild humor, scary parts, and fantasy. I recommend this book to anyone who like mystery and fantasy. I liked this book over all but I think it need jumps around to much. It seems to have more than one plot line. If you want to read this graphic novel, you can go to the webcomic online.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Trip

    This is a print version of the webcomic, but it is still peculiar and awesome! This is a print version of the webcomic, but it is still peculiar and awesome!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jenne

    Gah, this is so god damn adorable. Two girls at a mysterious magic/science school, with both ghosts AND robots.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Jayd

    Takes a while to find its footing, but this story developed an interesting, clever, and compelling world and cast of characters. As many others have said, the art style matures quickly and is much improved by the end of this volume. I'd love to stay and write more, but I have to start volume 2!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Alex

    this was so good!! it's about a girl in this school where weird supernatural things keep happening, and I love chill she is about it, and I actually kind of want to continue this

  25. 5 out of 5

    Dolly

    Witty and macabre, this graphic novel presents a unique perspective on English boarding schools. interesting quotes: "So we introduce to you, the dreaded Minotaur of Crete. Oh, uh...I prefer to be called Basil." (p. 27) "...this shows how a myth can be born of the constant re-telling and misinterpretation of a simple story." (p. 31) "Nobody likes clowns." (p. 67) "." (p. ) "." (p. ) "." (p. )

  26. 4 out of 5

    Kim Savage

    I really wanted to like this book. And I did really like about the first 85%. It was quirky and weird and funny. And then out of the blue a kid says g.d. More than once. Really ruined it for me. It was so totally unnecessary.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Arminzerella

    Antimony Carver is sent to Gunnerkrigg Court (a boarding school) after her mother dies. She’s had a pretty strange upbringing – spending most of her time in the hospital where her mother was bedridden – and she has some hidden talents. Antimony (Annie, to her best friend, Kat Donlan – daughter of the headmasters of the school) has a lot of adventures in her first year. She befriends a shadow person, talks to ghosts, is attacked by a demon that then possesses her stuffed animal and has to do her Antimony Carver is sent to Gunnerkrigg Court (a boarding school) after her mother dies. She’s had a pretty strange upbringing – spending most of her time in the hospital where her mother was bedridden – and she has some hidden talents. Antimony (Annie, to her best friend, Kat Donlan – daughter of the headmasters of the school) has a lot of adventures in her first year. She befriends a shadow person, talks to ghosts, is attacked by a demon that then possesses her stuffed animal and has to do her bidding, meets a minotaur for her homework assignment, and rescues a rogue robot (just to name a few). Although she’s often in danger, Annie always keeps her head and her wits about her. She does worry, however, about the whereabouts of her father (whom we don’t know much about). He has disappeared and (she indicates in some foreshadowing) she will not hear from him for another couple of years. Orientation collects the comics from Annie’s first year of school. It’s a webcomic, so you can follow Annie’s story online if you’re eager to know what happens next! Annie’s a great, unflappable character with glossy red hair and lots of smarts. Kat’s a good companion for her – a little on the emotional side, but loyal and brilliant in her own right. My favorite, however, is the demon, Reynardine – who seems to know more about Annie’s past than she does, is very secretive about what he does know, and is philosophical about being stuck in the body of her wolf doll. He can transform when Annie allows it, and he makes a very handsome wolf. The environment of Gunnerkrigg Court is very dark and mysterious (obviously it’s something more than a school and there’s more going on than what the students are studying), but the characters are bright and colorful. Not too terrifying for middle-graders, but intriguing enough for high school and adults. I liked Gunnerkrigg Court a lot and I can’t wait for the next collection!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Nicola Mansfield

    Reason for Reading: A Cybils Award nominee. Summary: Antimony's mother has recently died and her father has sent her to a remote British boarding school where she soon makes a best friend, Kat. Strange things happen right from beginning as she finds herself with a second shadow who asks for her help, she meets a friendly robot, finds a room that contains an entire outside meadow, meets up with demons, ghosts and the like all during her first year at Gunnerkrigg Court. Comments: A delightful book! Reason for Reading: A Cybils Award nominee. Summary: Antimony's mother has recently died and her father has sent her to a remote British boarding school where she soon makes a best friend, Kat. Strange things happen right from beginning as she finds herself with a second shadow who asks for her help, she meets a friendly robot, finds a room that contains an entire outside meadow, meets up with demons, ghosts and the like all during her first year at Gunnerkrigg Court. Comments: A delightful book! First off, the book itself is beautiful: a small, thick hardcover with glossy full colour pages. The artwork is gorgeous, having an animation feel to it. The story itself has it's obvious Harry Potter similarities but they are only alike superficially, and let's not forget JK did not invent the British boarding school fantasy. The book starts out with each chapter being rather episodic and I was wondering if that was all there was to it, but at a point previous characters start to show up and an overall plot began to develop and slowly unravel, hence my brief summary above. It's better not to know too much going into this book. Antimony is a fabulous main character. I found her somewhat over precocious at the beginning but as she becomes close to her friend she becomes more likeable and Antimony is a character that truly grows and develops from start to finish. The magical/fantasy elements of the story are a lot of fun and as the plot reveals itself become mysterious and hint at dangerous things to come. The book is infused with plenty of humour but there are also moments of brilliant pathos in some of the individual encounters Antimony and Kat experience along the way. One note of caution: there is some textual s*xual innuendo, not a lot but enough that I would be remiss in not mentioning it to those who are concerned about that sort of thing. I do highly recommend this book and am looking forward to Volume 2 which will be released in January, 2010.

  29. 5 out of 5

    V

    First off, this book is wonderful if only for the art development. It's so subtle that it's hardly noticeable in even a quick read - never mind with triweekly updates on the author's website - but a flip from the beginning to the end shows astounding change. Though art begins quirkily, with funky shapes and basic background, it became quite beautiful and capable of showing dramatic scenery. The atmosphere is something Tom Siddell has had down pat from the start, and the art conveys the tone so w First off, this book is wonderful if only for the art development. It's so subtle that it's hardly noticeable in even a quick read - never mind with triweekly updates on the author's website - but a flip from the beginning to the end shows astounding change. Though art begins quirkily, with funky shapes and basic background, it became quite beautiful and capable of showing dramatic scenery. The atmosphere is something Tom Siddell has had down pat from the start, and the art conveys the tone so well. As lovely as the art becomes, though, the story is what makes Gunnerkrigg so special. Equal parts Sci-Fi and Fantasy, Siddell created an alternate universe with rich myths based upon many cultures in our world. The wording is quite dry and sarcastic at points, with even the captions (on the website only) often being hilarious. Other pages are heartfelt, or even exciting. There's a feeling of a deeper mystery on every page, and Siddell is very intelligent with his foreshadowing that never feels heavy-handed or forced. At it's base it is about two young, engaging girls and their journey. I'll stop my endless vomit of praise, you guys get the idea. (: Buy this or look at his site, just read it somehow! A page I found particularly cute/funny: http://www.gunnerkrigg.com/archive_pa...

  30. 4 out of 5

    Lissibith

    Gunnerkrigg Court... just seriously, if you can handle reading books with pictures as an adult and like cute stories and science vs magic and humor and a really adorable friendship and having feels, then this is a book you probably owe it to yourself to check out. the first few chapters are a little rough - not bad, but rough - as the comic seems to be shaking out what it wants to be. The art is a lot wilder and... harsher? That's not quite the right word but it works. We get to meet Annie and he Gunnerkrigg Court... just seriously, if you can handle reading books with pictures as an adult and like cute stories and science vs magic and humor and a really adorable friendship and having feels, then this is a book you probably owe it to yourself to check out. the first few chapters are a little rough - not bad, but rough - as the comic seems to be shaking out what it wants to be. The art is a lot wilder and... harsher? That's not quite the right word but it works. We get to meet Annie and her friend Kat, going to school at this immense and unusual place called Gunnerkrigg Court, where the scientific and the supernatural exist side by side. It's fun, with shades of a serious undertone... until we get to "A Handful of Dirt," which for me at least is where the story really picks up (and you'd never guess it from the summary of the chapter, I guarantee.) All in all, I don't think it's possible to recommend this story enough. You can check it out for free online, and if you're anything like me, you'll soon find you want a copy to hold in your hands and take wherever you go.

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