Middlewest, Book One

Middlewest, Book One

The lands between the coasts are vast, slow to change, and full of hidden magics. The town of Farmington has been destroyed sending an unwitting adventurer and his vulpine companion in search of answers to quell a coming storm that speaks his name. From author SKOTTIE YOUNG (I HATE FAIRYLAND, DEADPOOL) and artist JORGE CORONA (NO. 1 WITH A BULLET, FEATHERS, BIG TROUBLE IN...

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Title:Middlewest, Book One
Author:Skottie Young
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Edition Language:English

Middlewest, Book One Reviews

  • Dani ❤️ Perspective of a Writer

    Middlewest book 1 brings together volumes 1-6 of a comic book about the wonderful world of Middlewest, a magic filled, steampunk inspired land riddled with farming communities. Abel is a likeable kid with some not so pleasant people around him. When his abusive dad takes things too far he heads out with Fox, his talking fox, to escape his family history. For a journey story I really fell in love with this world and many of the characters. We get

    Middlewest book 1 brings together volumes 1-6 of a comic book about the wonderful world of Middlewest, a magic filled, steampunk inspired land riddled with farming communities. Abel is a likeable kid with some not so pleasant people around him. When his abusive dad takes things too far he heads out with Fox, his talking fox, to escape his family history. For a journey story I really fell in love with this world and many of the characters. We get to explore, meet and experience as Abel and Fox explore, meet and experience and its a lot of fun.

    The fact that mental health and abuse is the center of Middlewest book 1 intrigues me! I was taken with the first volume's story right off as Abel is impelled to go on his journey. The situation is so real and raw and then suddenly outrageous!! This is the beauty of a graphic story... we can SEE that its quite organic how everything goes sideways and we're captured by the extremeness of events. My only subtle problem is that a few times events seemed random. This is the "monster-a-chapter" plot flaw... but I was happy to see it happened only briefly before we got back on track.

    One of the things that I ADORED about Middlewest book 1 is FOX!! Yes, the sidekick totally steals the show. Abel is genuinely a real kid who doesn't always do the right thing but also just wants to grow up happy. You really feel for him... but Fox makes caring for Abel FUN! This is all because Fox is like a skewed conscious gone rogue. He doesn't exactly steer Abel in the right direction (Fox is soooo morally grey) and like all kids, Abel isn't always willing to listen when Fox does suggest something that makes sense... it makes for disaster but also allows us to meet sooooo many neat characters.

    Bobby and her self-made sidekick robot is one of these many characters and their design is stellar!! She's been taught right and has a bit of a mouth on her which gives her so much personality. In fact I LOVED all of the character and monster designs. The visuals make this totally come to life. Abel's father's part of the journey is absolutely incredible because it so captures anger and what it does to a person emotionally in a visual way. I haven't even talked about the settings yet either... They are so detailed that I really felt like I was a part of the carnival, the storm and near the end Abel's struggle to control himself. Middlewest book 1 is gorgeous.

    Middlewest book 1 takes us on a journey through a magic filled, steampunk inspired land with robots, monsters and carnivals! It's a fun, heartfelt story about abuse and power relationships that is made snarky and morally grey because of a delightful Fox.

    ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Authenticity

    ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Tension

    ⋆ ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Plot

    ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Art

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  • Holly (Holly Hearts Books)

    Another graphic novel by Scottie Young. He is just pumping them out now and what a time to be alive. Middlwest is by far my favorite graphic novel so far this year and I really don't see anything topping it.

    It follows a young boy named Abel who lives in a small town called Farmington. He lives with his dad who treats him horribly. He is mentally and physically abused by him. One day, Abel gets involved in shoplifting with his friends when he didn't even want to participate. His dad finds out and

    Another graphic novel by Scottie Young. He is just pumping them out now and what a time to be alive. Middlwest is by far my favorite graphic novel so far this year and I really don't see anything topping it.

    It follows a young boy named Abel who lives in a small town called Farmington. He lives with his dad who treats him horribly. He is mentally and physically abused by him. One day, Abel gets involved in shoplifting with his friends when he didn't even want to participate. His dad finds out and kicks him out of the house but when Abel defends himself and speaks his true feelings, his father turns into a raging storm. No, seriously. He turns into a huge tornado, chases Abel and his companion talking fox (who I am dying to know the origins of) out of town but his dad leaves Abel with a physical mark on his chest that will change his life forever, giving him strange powers.. just like his father.

    The world the story is set in is so interesting. It's verging on the edge of steampunk. There's robots, strange critters that resemble mice and rabbits that you'd see in our world but have 3 eyes and contorted anatomy, huge machines that power buildings. In fact the buildings/houses themselves are a hodgepodge of junk and scraps. Our characters even have a run-in with a troll at a bridge! I LOVE THIS WORLD. Although my feelings are hurt after that cliffhanger ending, I am so looking forward to the next volume.

  • Amber

    Pretty good graphic novel about a young boy who runs away from his dad after he kicks him out of his house for stealing so he and his fox friend go away to find out what's wrong with him. Can he survive? Read on and find out for yourself. This graphic novel is available at your local library and wherever books are sold.

  • Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin

    That was super good!!!

    Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾

  • Artemy

    A beautifully realised YA-ish story with fantasy elements about a kid who runs away from home and his abusive father. Normally a story like this wouldn't really be my thing, but Skottie Young's rock-solid writing and Jorge Corona's sublime artwork made all the difference.

  • Jakub Kvíz

    Little Abel is growing up in a quiet farming town in the middle of nowhere with his father, who has serious anger management issues. One day he loses his shit, turns into a giant tornado and levels the whole town to the ground. And this is where Abel's journey starts.

    Middlewest was a pleasant surprise. The world is rich and full of interesting characters. The art fits the whole concept very well and I am looking forward to the second volume.

  • Matt Graupman

    It’s a familiar childhood refrain: “I’m gonna run away and join the circus!,” usually delivered in a defiant, petulant tone but rarely ever made good on. Except, in Skottie Young’s latest adolescence-is-hard graphic novel, “Middlewest,” his preteen protagonist, Abel, basically does just that. However, he really had no choice. I mean, his abusive storm-monster of a father (literally, he’s a psychotic force of nature) tried to kill him so what else could he do but hook up with his talking fox side

    It’s a familiar childhood refrain: “I’m gonna run away and join the circus!,” usually delivered in a defiant, petulant tone but rarely ever made good on. Except, in Skottie Young’s latest adolescence-is-hard graphic novel, “Middlewest,” his preteen protagonist, Abel, basically does just that. However, he really had no choice. I mean, his abusive storm-monster of a father (literally, he’s a psychotic force of nature) tried to kill him so what else could he do but hook up with his talking fox sidekick and join a traveling carnival full of similar misfits? Filtering the whimsy of his “I Hate Fairyland” series through his extensive superhero work for Marvel, Young’s latest project is sensitive, wildly creative, and fun despite its rather heavy subject matter.

    A sort of mythical heartland of desolate farms, steampunk-y contraptions, and hardscrabble working class folk, Middlewest (specifically the town of Farmington) is everything a tween would be expected to complain about: monotonous days, back-breaking labor, and moody adults. “Middlewest” starts kind of slow - in fact, I didn’t notice the more fantastic aspects of the setting until the fox started talking - but it gives Young a few pages to establish the prickly relationship between Abel and his gruff single parent father. One particularly heated argument results in his dad’s transformation, which also affects Abel, and then the book is off and running. As wild as Young’s imagination can get (woodland hobos, sarcastic robots, and I mentioned the talking fox, right?), Jorge Corona’s expressive, animated art matches him panel for panel. I really liked his work on “Feathers” but his drawings in “Middlewest” are on a whole different level (partially due to Jean-Francois Beaulieu’s gorgeous coloring). This volume collects just the first six issues so it seems like there’s a significant amount of story left to tell, and A LOT more of Abel’s family history to delve into, but “Middlewest” is off to a very good start. It features some excellent world-building, snappy dialogue, and gives equal weight to issues of abuse and the exhilaration of going on an adventure with your friends. It’s a much fresher concept than the nostalgic tone would lead you to believe.

    The last thing I want to mention is that I’m so glad there’s a company like Image that’s giving space to creator-driven projects like “Middlewest.” Of course Marvel and DC have their (large) places in the so-called “mainstream” comics marketplace, but I’ve been really impressed by how Image has consistently given creators free rein, regardless of content or tone, while maintaining a high level of quality. A story like “Middlewest” could’ve maybe found a home in some corner of the Big Two but I doubt the inciting scene where Abel snaps and screams “fuck you!” at his abusive father would’ve survived intact if it had; most likely it would’ve been censored or neutered, thus dulling its impact. I hope Kirkman and company continue to give Young and Corona the freedom to tell their unique story in the way it deserves to be told.

  • Chris

    This was fun. A boy tries to figure out some weird changes going on in his body and ends up running away from home and going on an adventure across the land with his talking fox.

    I got a real Wizard of Oz vibe from this, and it's not just because of

    . There's kind of a weird mashup of an old 1930's or 1950's aesthetic with retro-futuristic designs that reminds me of pre-apocalyptic America from the Fallout series.

    I didn't love this as I was hoping, but I did like it. The story doesn'

    This was fun. A boy tries to figure out some weird changes going on in his body and ends up running away from home and going on an adventure across the land with his talking fox.

    I got a real Wizard of Oz vibe from this, and it's not just because of

    . There's kind of a weird mashup of an old 1930's or 1950's aesthetic with retro-futuristic designs that reminds me of pre-apocalyptic America from the Fallout series.

    I didn't love this as I was hoping, but I did like it. The story doesn't feel particularly unique, but there's an interesting spin on the whole concept so I'm interested to see where it goes.

    I love Skottie Young's artwork. He has this amazing cartoony style that fits this world, but it seems like he's made a conscious effort not to replicate the style he used in the Wizard of Oz series to give this world it's own feel. It definitely helps give this world a more unique feel which is needed since the story doesn't really strike me in the same way.

    Overall a solid read and I'll be picking up the next volume to see where things go next.

  • Sam Quixote

    Abel decides to run away from home and join a travelling carnival of magicians, talking animals and robots because his dad’s an abusive prick – and also a giant wind monster (and not the kind that shows up after eating a plate of beans)! But Abel’s not safe as wind monster dad sets out after him…

    As you can probably guess from the premise, Skottie Young and Jorge Corona’s Middlewest is a super-realistic, grim’n’gritty take on growing up. Oh, I do like kidding around don’t I? And I kinda like Mid

    Abel decides to run away from home and join a travelling carnival of magicians, talking animals and robots because his dad’s an abusive prick – and also a giant wind monster (and not the kind that shows up after eating a plate of beans)! But Abel’s not safe as wind monster dad sets out after him…

    As you can probably guess from the premise, Skottie Young and Jorge Corona’s Middlewest is a super-realistic, grim’n’gritty take on growing up. Oh, I do like kidding around don’t I? And I kinda like Middlewest which is, ironically, a fairly middling new series.

    I like the Miyazaki-esque fantasyland where the series is set, particularly as Young doesn’t even attempt to explain any of the magic – it just is! Young utilises his extensive dark fantasy experience from Marvel’s Oz and his more recent Image series I Hate Fairyland to create an understandable and intriguing background.

    The story might be very underwritten – kid runs off, evil dad in pursuit for no discernible reason – but elements of it are compelling. There’s a scuffle atop a train with a hobo bird skeleton and a battle of wits with a troll on a bridge. Hobos and trains, trolls and bridges – these are clichés but Young writes them in a way that’s interesting. And I liked Corona’s art – it’s a bit like, but not as crisp or striking as, Rob Guillory’s but it’s still very appealing, helped too by Jean-Francois Beaulieu’s colours.

    There aren’t many characters I’m crazy about either. I liked the talking fox (Young channelling Rocket Raccoon), but that was about it. The others are unmemorable and boring. Abel’s a very dull protagonist too – he’s basically just everykid – and his dad is your archetypical one-dimensional villain.

    The first volume of Middlewest won’t blow anyone away but it’s a decent kid’s comic.

  • James DeSantis

    This book is tough one to review.

    So it starts off simple enough. Abel lives with an abusive father who beats him and treats him like shit. One day the boy snaps and tells his father to go fuck himself. In this moment his father becomes a giant tornado and destroys the city they live in and Abel runs off. Sounds like a typical coming of age story, huh?

    The thing here is that I LOVE, LOVE, LOVEEEEEEE the art. It's probably some of my favorite ever. I also enjoyed the bitter moments with the famil

    This book is tough one to review.

    So it starts off simple enough. Abel lives with an abusive father who beats him and treats him like shit. One day the boy snaps and tells his father to go fuck himself. In this moment his father becomes a giant tornado and destroys the city they live in and Abel runs off. Sounds like a typical coming of age story, huh?

    The thing here is that I LOVE, LOVE, LOVEEEEEEE the art. It's probably some of my favorite ever. I also enjoyed the bitter moments with the family drama. His father was a complete asshole, maybe too over the top at times, but it felt real. Abel's pain felt real. I also enjoyed Abel's talk with his Fox sidekick. All of that was good-great.

    However, all the side characters come off as a complete bore. I didn't care about the carnival message, and yes I got it, choosing your family verses who you get stuck with. None of that was interesting and the ending felt kind of anti-climatic for me.

    Overall, a interesting spin on things. Not everything panned out but the art is still amazing enough to read this book. A 3.5 out of 5.

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