Tuesday, 20 April 2021

Graphic Novel Review: Averee written by Stephanie Phillips with Dave Johnson, Illustrated by Marika Cresta

Pros: realistic setting and characters, pretty artwork

Cons: ending is simplistic

In a future where your Ranked app scores decide where you can live, what restaurants you can enter, and how ‘cool’ you are at school, being at the bottom sucks. When the app is hacked and the scores of Averee and her mom drop suddenly, Averee faces prejudice at school while her mom’s job is in jeopardy. A friend’s idea to find the app’s founder sounds impossible, but just might be Averee’s only hope.

Averee is a 5 issue, self-contained graphic novel. The artwork is full of colourful pastels and simplistic backgrounds, letting the characters and plot be the focus. It’s easy to grasp the kind of world an app like Ranked would create, so little world-building was required. Having said that, the cattiness of some schoolgirls is very realistic and sells the setting.

I liked the friendship between Averee and Zoe, whose rank has always been low. Their arguments and resolution feel natural for their age. I also liked the budding relationship between Averee and Luke, the awkwardness of trying too hard while hoping it’s not obvious you’re trying too hard.

The plot is well paced across the 5 issues, and while the ending seemed a little simplistic (I feel like the trio would face more consequences for what they did), I did like the resolution.

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