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Can love survive the zombie apocalypse? Maybe Dicey's first chance at a real relationship was dead from the start. She's the star of her high school baseball team, and Jack's the star of the science program. Her idea of a study session includes sleeping in the sun, and his idea of a good game involves dungeons and dice. But opposites start attracting when they're assigned to be partners in a class project. Now an outbreak of a weird infection—it eats your brains and leaves you hungry for more—might not mean just ...
Can love survive the zombie apocalypse? Maybe Dicey's first chance at a real relationship was dead from the start. She's the star of her high school baseball team, and Jack's the star of the science program. Her idea of a study session includes sleeping in the sun, and his idea of a good game involves dungeons and dice. But opposites start attracting when they're assigned to be partners in a class project. Now an outbreak of a weird infection—it eats your brains and leaves you hungry for more—might not mean just the end of their first date. It might mean the end of everything. Will their relationship fall apart faster than zombies in the Florida sun, or can Dicey and Jack beat the odds and find a happy ending?
Posted May 4, 2011
Dicey Bell bombed into the lab and shouted, "Jack Chen, you're the father of my baby." Yeah, right, but nonetheless her announcement made him drop his beaker. Dicey had chosen him to be her baby's father for the "egg for health ed project," but neither one of them was exactly thrilled at the thought of working with the other one. He was the biggest science geek at St. Petersburg High and she was a baseball jock for the Pelicans. Later Dicey needed him to babysit the egg because she had a big game coming up with Gulfport High and it was the team's last chance to cream them during the season. Jack was surprised to discover that Dicey was actually in the honor society, because jocks were like ... dumb weren't they? He was letting himself in for a bit more than he thought when she came over to his house to work on their report. No getting around it, Dicey was hot and Jack fell for her like a ton of bricks, but how could he get her to notice him? Everyone knew that "jocks and nerds are natural enemies," but no doubt they had the right chemistry. Jack finally got the guts to ask her out and they decided to cut school for their first date. They were on a bus heading to Demens Landing, but it seemed strange that police cars were whizzing by and sirens could be heard all over town. When they arrived at the landing, Jack moved away from Dicey so he could talk to his father, scientist Dr. Chen. He put the phone down and grasped either side of his head in uncertainly. The outbreak had begun . . . a Zombie fungus would destroy them all. Jack told Dicey the "disease destroys higher brain functions" and "makes people attack each other." Would they be able to escape St. Petersburg before they were struck down by the fungus or would it be the end of their relationship before it began? This high action, intensely dramatic tale of the Zombie Apocalypse will rivet the young reader. This is a tale of young love between a seemingly disparate couple, but they soon discover that a jock and a nerd really can gel with one another. This graphic novel is presented in the typical black-and-white high action serialized format. The initial cells in the story are neat, tidy, and presented in typical comic book fashion, but the later ones become highly dramatic and are spectacularly explosive. The apocalyptic scenery is quite impressive and the reluctant reader and Zombie/monster lover will appreciate the wildly animated pages. Stereotypical behaviors are tossed out the window and we see Jack and Dicey as well rounded, appealing individuals, even if their first date "brought on the Zombie Apocalypse". Quill says: This wild and weird apocalyptic tale of love, friendship, monsters, cordyceps, and Zombies is sure to please the reader who likes tales a bit on the weird and wild side!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 28, 2011
I was expecting something more along the lines of The Walking Dead or at the least High School of the Dead, but I got a far more kinder and gentler version of the zombie genre.
Dicey is the only girl on the baseball team, but she and her teammates have been playing together since her dad coached their little league team. Dicey is a loved and respected member of the team. She's also a very capable individual and Jack has no problem letting her protect or rescue him. This chick has chops! Jack is a super smart science nerd who plays role playing games on the weekends. In the high school world they are on different sides of the spectrum, but a health class project partners them up and it's the start of a beautiful friendship (and a little something more).
What really struck me about I Love Him To Pieces was the humor and the supportive characters that surround Dicey and Jack. The parents are loving and involved, though in Jack's case they aren't as present as he would like. They each have a group of friends that support their interests and were noticed Jack and Dicey's deepening relationship before our hero and heroine did.
While there was death and destruction, this is not a gory book but the humor and the sexual references make it a better read for middle grades and YA readers. Now, before anyone's Red Alert alarm goes off, the sexual references are regarding parenting an egg for health class (Jack is called the "baby daddy"). In my opinion it's all very clean, not tacky or inappropriate at all, I just don't know if most older elementary students would understand the references and find them funny. (The student newspaper interview transcript at the end of the book made me laugh out loud.) The story was well paced but I the passage of time was not represented well. I would get confused, go back a page or two, and then realize that hours or days had passed between one panel and the next. Despite my enjoyment of the story, I found this to be a real problem. I also had a few issues with the art. I can see that Gorrissen is a talented artist and the coloring and shading on the front and back covers is fantastic. While many pages and panels were well drawn, I found that sometimes it was a bit hard to tell what exactly was happening. The fact that I was reading a digital copy might be to blame for the clarity of the image, but I don't think so. Like the previous problem, this is something that should have been fixed at the story boarding stage.
Evonne Tsang has written a delightfully witty treat of a zombie story. While Janina Gorrissen is a great artist, there are places where I can't figure out what's going on in the picture, and this the storytelling. This, combined with a small but problem with the flow of events brings the book down a notch.
Posted March 20, 2011
This is a super-cute story with cute artwork (minus the zombies) and cute characters! Don't expect anything too deep or thought-provoking - this is more like a fun read that is mostly romantic with a hint of zombies. I really enjoyed learning about Jack's role-playing group and watching them go through their dungeon run - so funny!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 25, 2011
Dicey is the star of her high school baseball team in St. Petersburg, Florida. She is paired with Jack Chen, a science prodigy, son of science prodigies, for a project where they are parents to an egg. These two are total opposites, which, by tradition, are not supposed to get along. One is a jock, the other a nerd. Dicey and Jack Chen do get along and decide to go on a first date. An infection making its rounds in the city has other plans for these two. The infection is eating the brains of humans turning them into zombies. Jack Chen calls it the "zombie apocalypse." Without a cure, it will soon be the end of the world. To make matters worse for these two, they are on their own, stranded in a city of zombies. Soon a zombie bites Jack Chen. Now that he is a zombie nerd, can Dicey still date Jack Chen? It is one thing for a jock to date a nerd, but a zombie nerd.
I Love Him to Pieces by Evonne Tsang is a fun, fast-paced graphic novel for teens. The illustrations, by Janina Görrisse, are spot on, with expressions that enhance the story of Dicey and Jack Chen. The story of a jock and nerd, with the jock being the female, is an interesting role reversal. Dicey is the outgoing personality; Jack Chen the reserved, introverted, nerdy scientist. He thinks Dicey swapped names so she could be his partner in the egg baby project and is not what sure what to make of this. The official first date is definitely a make-or-break it date. The writing is well paced and authentic. The illustrations bring the story to life. Dicey and Jack Chen look close to what I imagined they would. I have read comics before but never have they come to life the way I Love Him To Pieces does.
I Love Him to Pieces is the first in a series of My Boyfriend is a Monster graphic novels for teens. Number 2, due out this Spring, is called Made for Each Other, written by Paul D. Storrie. This one involves a conservation minded funeral parlor, whose director does not want his son's new girlfriend hanging around. I wonder why?
I suggest you read I Love Him to Pieces now and then move on to Made for Each Other. These are two sure hits for teens. Wonderful relationship stories combined with awesome illustrations give the novels the excitement teens will love. If you have never read a graphic novel, like me, I Love Him to Pieces is the one to sink your teeth into.
Note: received from NetGalley