Monday, March 17, 2014

Review: 'Tune, Book 1: Vanishing Point' by Derek Kirk Kim

With only a year left before finishing his art degree, Andy Go quits school sure that it will be "a matter of days" before he lands a fantastic job with a publishing house or magazine.  Six months after quitting school, Andy still hasn't found an art job and is feeling pressure from his parent to find some kind of employment. Which is when things get weird.

Liberally sprinkled with funny illustrations and hysterical dialog, Tune, Book 1: Vanishing Point is sure to be a hit with older teen readers. Teens will identify with Andy's job hunting frustrations as well as the parental pressure he is under.  Andy is, in many ways, a lost soul; he thought that his talent would easily land him a career as an artist/illustrator, he's got a major crush on one of his female friends, and he has no idea what to do with his life. Any reader can relate to those issues.

The humor in this graphic novel is phenomenal and, quite frankly, why I kept reading when the plot seemed to stall. Here's an example of the type of dialog that had me snickering under my breath at the reference desk:
Andy's Father: Son, there comes a time in every man's life when he realizes that he is not destined for great things; that he is not a genius; that he is not special...that he will grovel and passively allow himself to be spat upon for a meager pension at the end of his meaningless "profession". Soon spiritual burdens such as hope, dreams, and ambition are freely bled from his weary soul...Then, and only then, under a self-induced trance of mindless complacency, will he know true peace of mind. Then, and only then, does he truly become...a man!  Welcome, grasshopper. Welcome.
Andy: Thank you, Father. Thank you for opening my eyes.
Andy's Father: There is no need for thanks, my son. You need only to pass this fundamental knowledge to your own son when he is ready. Remember, "the chain must never be broken!"
Andy: You can count on me, Dad! Listen, I'm gonna go down to the hardware store for some rope to hang myself. You want anything?
Andy's Father: Pick me up a Frosty at Wendy's, willya?

Older readers looking for an fun, quirky read will enjoy this one.

Reviewer: Rebecca
Book Source: Local Library

Recommended for Ages: 16+, college-age humor and activities
Recommended for Readers of: