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Giants Beware!

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Overview

Make way for Claudette the giant slayer in this delightful, fantastical adventure!

Claudette’s fondest wish is to slay a giant. But her village is so safe and quiet! What’s a future giant slayer to do?

With her best friend Marie (an aspiring princess), and her brother Gaston (a pastry-chef-to-be), Claudette embarks on a super-secret quest to find a giant—without parental permission. Can they find and ...

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Overview

Make way for Claudette the giant slayer in this delightful, fantastical adventure!

Claudette’s fondest wish is to slay a giant. But her village is so safe and quiet! What’s a future giant slayer to do?

With her best friend Marie (an aspiring princess), and her brother Gaston (a pastry-chef-to-be), Claudette embarks on a super-secret quest to find a giant—without parental permission. Can they find and defeat the giant before their parents find them and drag them back home?

 

Giants Beware! offers up a wondrous, self-contained world in the tradition of the very best of Pixar. Claudette and her friends will have you laughing out loud from page one.

 

Giants Beware! Author Q&A

What was your inspiration for the book?

Rafael:  I’m not entirely sure.  I recently went through some old sketchbooks of mine and realized that I’d been drawing a character that looked kind of like our main character, Claudette, years before we even began the book.  I guess I’ve had this character of this girl with a lot of spunk in my subconscious for a while.  I’m also really into French comics and that influenced the look quite bit. 

Which character do you identify with and why?

Rafael:  I’m not impulsive like Claudette.  I’m probably most like Gaston.  He thinks before taking the leap.  He worries a lot.  That’s probably more like me.

Jorge:  I wish I could say I was like Marie.  Marie doesn’t care what other people think of her.  In this book, she aspires to be a princess and other kids make fun of her, but she doesn’t pay them any attention.  She’s very confident and smart.   I wish I were more like her.  I also wish I were like Claudette.  She’s brave, reckless, and impulsive.  But I’m not like her either.  Like Rafael, I’m probably most like Gaston.  I’m a little nervous and I love sweets.

How did your partnership begin?

Jorge:  We’ve known each other since we were both in film school at the Ohio State University in Columbus. I was in a writing class at OSU, and of all the bad scripts in class, mine was one of the least bad scripts, and so it was chosen to be produced with Rafael as the director.  We spent a good month or so filming a very bad film together.  That is how we became friends. 

Rafael:  Fast forward years later to Columbus, Ohio circa 2007.  We were at John Novak’s house (our colorist and a mutual friend).  I told Jorge about these characters I had bouncing around in my head and a story about a giant.  I went off and wrote and drew up the ideas I had so far.  I gave them to Jorge, and told him to run with it.  And he ran. 

How did you draw the book?  How did you write the book?

Rafael:  I drew the whole thing in Photoshop, on a Wacon Cintiq (a tablet-monitor). I like drawing digitally because it gives me a lot of flexibly down the line for edits and moving things around. John Novak and Matthew Schenk colored the book.  We used a DropBox to move files around between John Novak and Matthew Schenk (color), Jorge, and me.  Jorge and I would meet every once in awhile either in person in Columbus or via video chatting to go over pages and notes. 

Jorge:  I used Scrivener to collect all my notes, and Final Draft to write the script.  I lettered the book in Illustrator, which gave me the chance to do one last rewrite.  I’m always rewriting, and I always tried not to send any script pages to Rafael until they were fully baked or else he’d start drawing right away.

What’s up with Claudette’s dad?

Do you mean like why is he missing his legs and an arm?  Well, he fought a battle against a terrible dragon and lost.  You always hear about these great warriors who slay dragons.  Well, Augustine is a great warrior who had a very bad day.  And now his favorite sword is sitting in the belly of Azra the dragon.  But that’s a story for another day.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Comedy and fairy tale sensibilities balance perfectly in this exciting debut by writer Aguirre and illustrator Rosado. Delightfully spunky Claudette is set on becoming a monster slayer like her father (who is missing limbs due to his earlier adventures). When she hears the story of a giant on the loose, she is determined to leave her home—accompanied by her cowardly brother, Gaston, and best friend Marie—in order to set things right. Driven by Claudette’s courage, Marie, who wants nothing more than to become a princess, shows proper heroic wits, and Gaston reveals inner strength and determination. When Claudette discovers that not all stories are as they seem, she and her friends must fool the adults who have come to bring them home to protect an innocent monster. The rich world and engaging characters are a surefire hit—and the glorious full-color illustrations, which pack a novel’s worth of expression onto cartoon faces, should bring readers back for multiple reads of this many-layered story. One can only hope that Aguirre and Rosado have more adventures planned. Ages 7–up. (Apr.)
Children's Literature - Deborah Helton
Giants Beware! tells the story of Claudette, her brother Gaston, and her best friend Marie. Claudette wants to be a giant slayer. Gaston wants to be a chef/blacksmith apprentice. Marie is a princess in training. Claudette convinces the other two that their wishes will come true if they accompany her on her quest to slay the giant. Their adventures take them through such places as "the Forest of Death" and "Mad River" as they search for "Giant's Peak." Along the way each of them learns something about themselves and what is really important in life. Giants Beware! is an epic adventure for anyone who loves graphic novels, from the young reader to the reader who is young at heart. The illustrations are beautifully drawn with colorful detail that adds another layer to the story. This is one book that readers are sure to enjoy again and again. Reviewer: Deborah Helton
School Library Journal
Gr 3–6—A blacksmith's daughter is unsatisfied with her peaceful life within the fortress of Mont Petit Pierre. Rambunctious and loudmouthed, Claudette yearns for action, like killing the giant that lives on the mountain outside of town. With her timid brother, Gaston, and her ladylike friend, Marie, she blusters her way through the fortress gate and into the Forest of Death, beyond which lies the Mad River, and then Giant's Peak. Can these three kids, armed with a wooden sword, Marie's intelligence, Gaston's fortitude, Claudette's stinky feet, and a pug named Valiant, survive in the wilderness and defeat the giant? Of course they can, but not in the ways they might have expected. The adults in the story are distinguished by exaggerated characteristics, but their actions are driven by realistic, largely generous motives. The story strikes a fine balance between being action-and friendship-driven. The art is similarly well-balanced: Rosado's ink drawings are strong and lively, with expressive characters and well-drawn landscapes. Digitally applied color is natural, bright, and nonintrusive. Fans of Jimmy Gownley's "Amelia Rules" (S &S) and Jeff Smith's "Bone" series (Scholastic) will snap this title up.—Paula Willey , Baltimore County Public Library, Towson, MD
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781596435827
  • Publisher: First Second
  • Publication date: 4/10/2012
  • Pages: 208
  • Sales rank: 189,194
  • Age range: 7 - 10 Years
  • Lexile: GN330L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 7.52 (w) x 9.84 (h) x 0.46 (d)

Meet the Author

Jorge Aguirre

Jorge Aguirre is a Colombian-American from Columbus, Ohio. He’s written for everything from the most popular children’s shows to documentaries about Romanian exorcisms. He lives on the East Coast.

Born in Puerto Rico and based in Ohio, Rafael Rosado is a veteran of the animation industry. He is currently a storyboard artist for Warner Brothers, Disney, and Cartoon Network.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 29, 2014

    Gaints beware this is the greatest book ever my whole school lov

    Gaints beware
    this is the greatest book ever my whole school loves it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 10, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Endearing, Grand Bed Time Story

    Graphic Novel Review by Kole
    This book was a pretty good book for kids. I was under the impression before reading it that it wasn’t just set for a really young audience. But I can’t judge the book on the fact that it’s for younger people. For that age range it was good, easy to understand and well designed and formatted. The only reason I had trouble was the fact that I’m not one of those kids, when I read I expect a better quality of writing. But like I said that’s the way the book should be. Although all the non-common names might be confusing for younger kids, but I still stayed for the ride and I actually got enjoyment out of it. It’s a good book for kids maybe in elementary school. I’d read more if it had sequels. Book Rating: 4 /5

    Graphic Novel Review by Chris
    ‘Giants Beware!’ is the type of book a parent could read as a bed time story, but on a grand scale. During the quest, the three main characters truly find out what makes them special as individuals and then each grow because of it. The challenges are solved using their brains and their childlike approach to things. It’s fun to see how they overcome challenges where warrior men had failed before.

    The art is simple and endearing. The character’s expressions leap off the page, the colors are vibrant, and the storytelling is spot on. Perfect for kids and once they pass off to Slumberland, you can finish reading it for yourself. Book Rating: 4/5

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 4, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews

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