The Great Cow Race, Bones Vol. 2 by Jeff Smith

Overview: The cornerstone of GRAPHIX, our new graphic novel imprint, BONE is the incredible comic book saga of an unlikely hero who must save an idyllic valley from the forces of evil.

In THE GREAT COW RACE, volume 2 of this 9-book epic, Fone Bone and his cousins plan to return home after visiting the village of Barrelhaven with Thorn and Gran’ma Ben. But Phoney risks everything on one last get-rich-quick scheme for the town’s annual Great Cow Race. As usual, Phoney’s plans go disastrously awry, and Boneville seems further away than ever. Meanwhile, ominous signs indicate that a war is brewing, and Fone finds himself helping his friends defend their valley from a formidable enemy.

My thoughts: Like the first volume, the colors are very bright, but I think the colors in the second volume are a bit brighter and the pages are crisper. This time, the tones didn’t smear the words. I didn’t find the second book as great as the first. The jokes are smushed more towards the end instead of equally spread out. The story doesn’t develop as much as it did in the first. They’re still in the same general area, and the reader doesn’t find out anymore about the mysteries of the rat creatures or Phoney’s horrible deals. However, the reader is reminded of the mysteries towards the end of the book with hidden shadows and objects in trees. It’s as if the author wanted to break away from the meat of the story and explore characters more rather than develop the plot. That idea isn’t a bad one. Developing characters is important, but I don’t think it should be done in the second book of a graphic novel series. I think it should be done towards the end of the second book or the beginning of the third book rather than during the whole second book. Though, in context of what the author is trying to write in the long run, this book may just be in the right place, but I’d have to look at the series as a whole rather than just at a book. It’s still worth reading since it’s a part of a good series, but it’s not my favorite of the Bones series.

Just for fun: My favorite part was once again the rat creatures. For some reason, Smith always seems to incorporate some kind of Looney Tune-like humor when it comes to the rat creatures, especially since they’re clutzy and get stuck in ruts. They make this series hilarious.

I borrowed this book from my younger sister.

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