Travels of Thelonious (The Fog Mound #1) By Susan Schade

Susan Schade á 4 Summary


3.5 stars rated up for intrigue and that I'm probably judging it too harshly seeing as it's a kid's book

I came across this book entirely by chance at the library. I read the back and the idea seemed really interesting. I didn't know until I opened it today that it's actually half comic book and half novel, alternating between the two every chapter. The art is greyscale, a bit sketchy but not messy, with a flat blue background as the only color. I liked the style, because the animals looked realistic rather than cartoonish, other than maybe the lizard.

The prose, even for a kid's book, is a little basic. I mean that in the sense that many 'paragraphs' are less than one line long. It makes for a faster read, but also less detail. Lots of -ly adverbs and incorrect breaking up of dialogue while the same person is speaking. I think I prefer the comic portions for that reason.

Nit-picking aside, though, and acknowledging the very obvious plot points (to the adult's eye, anyway), it's still an interesting idea and the concept is something I'm interested in regardless of the age level of the book. Since it's only a trilogy I think I'll try the next one and see where it goes. Childrens, Adventure It’s not what I really expected. I have a Grade 4 student who struggles with reading and likes graphic books and this was recommended to me. It’s a good compromise between a graphic novel and a ‘reading book’. The pictures are clear and the text is easy to read. At first glance, the book seems just to be about talking animals, but there is definitely more to it.

The story is set in the future with Thelonious (a talking chipmunk) who lives in a tree, in the woods. His prized possession is a postcard of a skyscraper, which must have been built by humans, although no one is sure that humans really existed.

After a flash flood, his home is destroyed and he ends up in the City of Ruins. There, he discovers ‘his’ building, but like the rest of the city it’s neglected and falling apart. What happened?

I found the characters very engaging (I can’t decide who is my favourite). The pace of the story is gentle, but there are many topics to discuss as the story progresses. We do have some happy endings, but there does seem to be a lot of unfinished business. I was left with further questions about Bill, the dragon lady and Faradawn.

Guess I’ll just have to look out for Book 2.

Childrens, Adventure I think it is rad how a chickmunk finds himself in the city of ruins. It's also funny when he says thank you barbie. By Kip Childrens, Adventure 5/11/2022: Just as fun and enjoyable as the first time around! I really like the art style, and the graphics / text combo is pretty unique. Childrens, Adventure Travels of Thelonious / Susan Schade /
Genre: fiction
Format: juvenile fiction/ almost graphic novel

Plot Summary: At a time when animals only know myths about the talking humans who once dominated and nearly destroyed the world, a young chipmunk escapes danger in the City of Ruins and, with new friends, finds the Fog Mound, where all creatures live in peace and harmony.

Considerations: suspenseful overtones

Review Citation: School Library Journal, vol 52, issue 7, p129
Written in chapters that alternate between traditional prose and comic-book format, the story is a gentle introduction to graphic novels. The illustrations are delightfully cartoonlike, and they are tinted in a soothing blue that beautifully complements the postapocalyptic setting.

Selection Source: School Library Journal
Recommended age: 9-12
Childrens, Adventure

Ich denke das wäre das perfekte Buch für junge Leser. Genau die richtige Mischung aus Bilderserien und Text-Kapiteln. Außerdem sind sprechende Tiere und eine große Reise immer ein Abenteuer wert.

PS: Diese Ilustrationen *.* Childrens, Adventure Interesting premise. The future is home to many talking animals. The idea of humans is considered (in the untamed forest) mostly myth. So we follow Thelonious the Chipmunk (Thelonious Monk?) to the ancient ruins of human habitation, and discover many strange things. Very fun story with an overarching mystery - what happened to the human race? If I ever stumble upon book 2, I will look forward to reading it! Childrens, Adventure I actually think this book would have been stronger as a complete graphic novel rather than switching back and forth, but it's an interesting concept. There's nothing particularly bad about it, either, so I couldn't be too harsh here. Childrens, Adventure 5th grade book club w/ Salina AHHH
Gave it a big old sideways thumb way back when, so I’m assuming it’s a 3/5 from me. Childrens, Adventure Karen and I recently saw this book at McNally Jackson. We were there with Tommy and when we saw Simon and Schuster published it, she said that she would get it for us. When she received the book she told us that the book looked dumb, or stupid or bad, or something like that. Tommy must have been temporarily crazy, or else confusing this book with another.

First off, the book looks pretty. It is designed in a Chris Ware sort of way, you know Acme Novelty style. Mixed with the Ware-esque aesthetics there is a sort of (you know the graphic novel I'm thinking of but can't remember, Karen just let me know that I'm thinking of Pluck and Fuzz by Ted Stern) feel to the drawing style of the characters (I might be really offbase with this comparison). But this book is for kids, and hopefully the intended audience won't have any frame of reference to say that this looks like Chris Ware, because seriously if kids are reading Ware they are going to grow up to be depressed little shits, and they should be out there enjoying their last fleeting moments of enjoyment in life before they realize what a cruel joke it all really is.

Anyway, this is part graphic novel, part traditional novel. The story is about a talking chipmunk who thinks he knows better than his sister and mom and chooses to live in a tree decorated with a postcard with a picture of a skyscraper on it. Early in the book though the little chipmunk is punished for his hubris of living in a tree instead of in the ground. During a rainstorm his tree gets washed away. When his tree finally comes to dry land he finds himself in a post-human New York City that is populated by a variety of talking critters. Talking animals on adventures in books are a guilty enjoyment of mine. I love Tailchasher's Song and Watership Down, although the world of Brian Jacques freaks me out a little, I've never read a Redwall novel. Add pictures of cute chipmunks and grumpy porcupines (but where the fuck are the foxes? huh? They are mentioned on several occasions, but where are the fucking foxes? Put them in!!) and how can any infantile thirty-six year old guy not think this book is just adorable (especially when the book looks like a Chris Ware production, which makes it 'cool' for a chubby bespectacled guy nearing his middle ages to like).

Also did I mention that the book has that, books are magical and awesome, moral in it? Even though it's cheap to stick this moral into books for kids I'm still dreamy enough about books to find the message charming.

Ok, the story itself is a little weak. There isn't the best development and the characters overcome difficulties easily, but for an hour or so reading on a Saturday morning this book was adorable enough for me to want to read the further adventures of Thelonious the talking chipmunk. Childrens, Adventure

In ancient times human beings ruled the Earth -- at least that's what the old legends claim. But is it true?Thelonious Chipmunk is a Talker -- an animal who has inherited the gift of language -- and he, for one, believes in humans. Who else could have made the old paper postcard he treasures? His desire to know more about humans is fulfilled in a surprising and dangerous way when Thelonious is swept down the river into a strange new world -- a world where gangs and warlords prowl amongst the crumbling remains of civilization.

With three new companions, -- a bear, a porcupine, and a lizard -- Thelonious embarks on a search for the far-off Fog Mound. It is a journey that becomes nothing less than a quest to uncover the secrets of Earth's past.

Using alternate chapters of graphic novel and straight text, Susan Schade and Jon Buller have combined their writing and illustrating talents to create a book in which the form truly reflects the excitement and adventure of the story. Young readers, whether they have discovered graphic novels or not, will find this book a visual and reading delight. Travels of Thelonious (The Fog Mound #1)