“Amulet” follows siblings Emily and Navin as they move into a new home. It’s two years after their dad passed away in a car accident, and without his support, they’ve fallen on some financial hardships. Their new home once belonged to their Great Grandpa Silas, who mysteriously disappeared years ago. As the kids and their mom, Karen, start to fix up the rundown house, they discover some unwelcome boarders who serve as the catalyst for all three to be catapulted into a new world full of frightening creatures, enchanting robots, and answers as to just what happened to their grandpa.
“Amulet” is so visually stunning it feels like you’re reading a movie. The colors are vibrant, the action is fast-paced, and emotions run high from page to page. I was repeatedly torn between staring at each page with its myriad of fantastical characters, and turning the page to see what happens next. Obviously, I kept turning these pages like mad, but when I finished I went back through it all to keep looking at Kibuishi’s art. It is so captivating I couldn’t help but analyze every nook and cranny of each panel of his pages. I especially found myself staring at his full-page art that highlighted the setting and landscape of his unique world. I hope someday Kibuishi gets the opportunity to turn this into a movie, so that we get to see this world in action.
Kibuishi sure knows how to build a world, which is another aspect that just completely pulls you into the story. He’s mixed up science and fantasy here with talking robots, magical jewelry, and evil elves that, although typically kept in different stories, feel like they all fit together nicely in this new world. At the end of book one there’s still an air of mystery as to just how this world operates, but that mystery doesn’t make the book feel incomplete. Instead, enough groundwork has been laid that I want to travel back into this world and get to know more about Kibuishi’s exciting land.
Fortunately, there are four more books to go, and I’m sure the world will become even more magical than this go around.
A new fantasy world that mixes magic and mechanics.
A diverse cast of robots that brings humor and variety to the characters.