Family Comic Friday: A Review of Clem Hetherington, Volume 1
I think I finally have found out why so many kids are orphans in children’s literature. It’s because if mom and dad was around, there is no way in the world that the parents would let their kids do any of the insane stuff they do in them! That’s the case in today’s edition of Family Comic Friday. The graphic novel we review is Clem Hetherington and the Ironwood Race. It’s the first in a new series by Something’s Amiss at the Zoo’s Jen Breach and Douglas Holgate.
Clem Hetherington, Volume 1: Clem Hetherington and the Ironwood Race
Written by Jen Breach
Art by Douglas Holgate
Published by Graphix
13-year old Clem and her robot brother Digory have run away from the orphanage. They long for the days of excitement when they used to conduct archaeological excavations with their parents. On the run, those days seem long gone until an old friend and partner of Clem’s folks returns with another chance for some adventure.
Clem and Digory are recruited to drive their father’s custom-made roadster in a competition called the Ironwood Race. Racer’s run in series of heats in hopes of uncovering 4 missing artifacts. The team who find the most treasure while running the fastest wins! Other than that, there are no rules in the Ironwood Race. It’s the ultimate fight to the finish!
Clem Hetherington is a cross between Indiana Jones and Mad Max. There’s secret passageways and enigmatic maps, futuristic technology, fierce mutants and no holds barred racing! Being from Australia, the birthplace of apocalyptic adventure stories, this seems like a perfect project for the team of Breach and Holgate.
Some scenes of action and adventure may be a little too intense for very young readers. Also, there is some violent scenes both implied and not that prevent this book from being an all-ages read. Recommended for readers in grades 3-7, I wonder if grade 3 might still be a bit too young to read this book.
The story itself was quite original. I’ve never seen an event just like the Ironwood Race as I never really thought to put race car driving with archaeology. Yet, this is a logical pairing as TV and movies are filled with treasure hunters racing to beat their rivals in order to discover a hidden temple or forgotten tomb.
I really look forward to further adventures of Clem and her brother, Digory. They were an interesting duo and they really engaged the imagination. I hope they are preparing for another race because if they are, I’ll be watching from the front row!
An extremely inventive read that may be too intense at times for readers in grades 3 and under.
Clem Hetherington, Volume 1: Clem Hetherington and the Ironwood Race is available now in both print and digital formats.
For more Family Comic Friday and other reviews, check out my blog: Madman with a Book.