The Demon of River Heights

Demon of River Heights

In Stefan Petrucha’s graphic novel The Demon of River Heights, Nancy Drew and her friends are shooting a movie produced by film students from the neighboring college. After an incident in the park, Drew and company notice that the students have gone missing. Nancy wonders if a rumored monster and the sudden arrival of wealthy businessman Angley Canton has anything to do with their mysterious disappearance.

This is my first experience with graphic novels, Stefan Petrucha, and Nancy Drew. I’d never read any Nancy Drew novels growing up, so I figured it would be okay to start with this book as it is the first in the series. While it was nice to have the visual images to support the story, I felt that this was lacking in communicating some key aspects about the backgrounds of Nancy and her friends. I only vaguely knew that Nancy’s father was a lawyer (it pertained to the case), yet I knew a lot more about her relationship and the scrapes she got into with the police chief.

On the upside, the trio is immediately immersed in solving the crime. There are some nice moments that illustrates the relationship  Nancy has with her friends, but I was very curious about and wanted more of the back story. I have a feeling that these things will be revealed as the series continues and of course are not necessary for anyone previously acquainted with the girl detective.

Having no prior knowledge of Nancy I can’t really say how I felt about the more modern take on Ms. Drew. The illustrations did seem to adequately portray the story, though about half of them were darker in color and more shadowy than I would have liked them to be. It’s a short graphic novel and the mystery moved along at a brisk pace though it was readily apparent who the bad guys were in the story, but as Candace points out in her review these books originated for a much younger crowd.

This was a painless way for me to ease myself into graphic novels, but I think I will try another series rather than continue reading this one. The novelty of reading a graphic novel amused me, and the storyline was light and entertaining but I need a little bit more to sink my teeth into. It’s one that I will likely pass on to my nine-year-old cousin. She just loves smart female heroines and super heroes.


Yesterday I reviewed What The Witch Left Behind by Ruth Chew.

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