Spontaneous by Joe Harris
Art by Brett Weldele
Available: February 22, 2012
Publisher: Oni Press
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Background: Melvin was only three when his father died of a horrible combustion, otherwise known to Melvin as Spontaneous Human Combustion. Melvin is now older and trying to place the puzzle pieces together about why his father died and what is going on with the others that have had the same blistering death.
Review: This was an interesting read. It is a graphic novel with beautiful artwork, however the character close ups all look pretty similar so it can get confusing at times. The story line was interesting. Melvin’s character meets up with an aspiring journalist and together they try to solve the mystery of spontaneous human combustion. Melvin is enthusiastic to search because he wants to explain away what happened to his father, so the story jumps right into another person dying of a horrible accident.
The story seems like it would be an interesting one, the main issue I had with it was its terseness, the story doesn’t have time to develop the plot as much as I would have liked it to, and the characters are underdeveloped because of it. The overall idea behind the story is what kept me reading, I think the spontaneous fiery death thing has a lot going for it, however overall it fell a little shorter than I had hoped, the ending was a bit of a cop-out. If it had been a little lengthier, I think the ending would have fit nicer, once we got to know the characters more.
**ARC from Netgalley/Oni Press-- Publication date 2/22/2012**
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