Vampire Academy: The Graphic Novel — My First Time Reading a Graphic Novel

Vampire Academy: The Graphic Novel

This year, I branched out from my comfort zone and tried out two new types of books that I’ve never read before…a novella and a graphic novel. I ended up loving my first novella so much that I immediately went and read a ton more. But my experience reading the graphic novel was a little bit different.

For my first graphic novel, I chose Vampire Academy: The Graphic Novel. I love the Vampire Academy series so much, I knew (or at least hoped) that I would love the graphic novel as well. But…it fell disappointingly flat.

Reading the same story over again didn’t bother me. It was just the way it was done, I guess. It felt almost sterile to me. It was completely lacking the magic that the original novel held for me, and it wasn’t just because it was a “re-read.” It felt like too much information was being shoved into too small a space, and even though there were pictures, I was having trouble getting immersed in the atmosphere of the Academy because of the poor translation into this format.

Vampire Academy: The Graphic Novel — Rose

I also really didn’t enjoy the artwork. I expected more from this graphic novel, and it just didn’t deliver. The characters looked nothing like I’d pictured them in my head, especially Rose. She’s supposed to be this sexy, curvy, short badass with awesome hair…but she was tall, lanky, and not very attractive in the graphic novel version. The bad artwork was distracting and made it really hard for me to be able to concentrate on the story itself.

This whole experience just left a bit of a bad taste in my mouth. I don’t think that I’ll be picking up another graphic novel any time soon.

Have you ever read a graphic novel? Do you like them or dislike them?

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16 responses to “Vampire Academy: The Graphic Novel — My First Time Reading a Graphic Novel

  1. Graphic novels? The only one I read was the Nancy Drew series, and the art wasn’t really that good. And I don’t think I would dare read a graphic novel of a book. There was an unwrapped graphic novel of The Titan’s Curse in a store once, and I tried to read it. If I didn’t know the series, I would have been lost by page 1.

    • Oh I had no idea that the Nancy Drew novels had a graphic novel! If I hadn’t disliked my first experience so much, I might’ve actually been interested in checking that out. But, yeah, it seems like bad art is pretty standard when it comes to graphic novels, which is pretty disappointing.

  2. Eh, I prefer reading manga 😛 I mean, graphic novels are fine and all, but I only *like* them, because there are lots like the Vampire Academy graphic novel (especially when it comes to book-to-graphic novel adaptions). I can’t seem to find many that have art that is pleasing to the eye, or with stories that will hold my interest very long.I have been getting interested in some of the Batman graphic novels, though. Or are those comics?

    If you want to read a good graphic novel series, I would recommend the Locke and Key series by Joe Hill. They are very entertaining and the art is quite good, though the faces are drawn in a style that can be sort of… odd-looking at times… But that might just be me.

    • Haha yeah I figured you were a manga fan from reading your blog 😉 I’ll keep the Locke and Key series in mind. I just think I’ll probably stay away from book-to-graphic novels in the future. And I’m not even sure the genre in general is really “my thing.” I’m not really into manga or comics, either. Yeah I think that the Batman ones are comics…but maybe there’s both? It seems like a big franchise. I’m not sure.

      • Yeah, there doesn’t seem to be that many good ones out there, at least from what I have experienced…

        There are so many Batman stories that I find it hard to wrap my mind around O_O It is sort of cool that so many different people wrote the same character. I think that seeing the differences in how different creators write Batman would be interesting! Actually…. I could totally write a post on that 😀

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  4. Oh, ew. I don’t like the look of that artwork at all.
    I have read a few graphic novels, but I must say that I prefer manga. I have been reading manga for nearly ten years now (WOW now I feel old), and I still love it to pieces. If you are interested in reading illustrated novels, I would definitely suggest manga over graphic novels. The art is generally very beautiful; as the artists are not trying to make them look like movie characters. They’re making them look like animated characters.
    If you are interested in manga, I suggest all the five and four star reads on my shelf: https://www.goodreads.com/review/list/12889649-chiara-delicate-eternity?shelf=manga
    I hope this helps 😀

  5. Aww, man, how disappointing. I think this might be the reason I have thus far been hesitant to pick up a graphic novel based on a book I’ve already read. I’m always scared it’s going to fall flat, like it wouldn’t translate well, and it appears my fear were correct — at least for this series. It’s weird because you’d think we would be more excited to see our favorite books turned into something so visual!

    Sucks that even the artwork was disappointing! It sounds like perhaps the artists involved in this graphic novel creation weren’t as passionate about the original books as perhaps they should have been. 😦

    I would like to suggest, though, maybe trying out a graphic novel that isn’t a redo of a written novel? Something that was originally created to be a graphic novel would probably be more satisfying. I’m not big into comics, but I’ve been surprised by how much I loved Watchmen and Girl Genius!

    • Thanks for the suggestions! Somebody else mentioned that, too…that I should try a graphic novel/manga that isn’t based on a book. I’m definitely thinking about it, I’m just still not sure that that kind of format is “my thing.” But I’m always willing to try something new!

      • Yeah, it’s not really my thing either, but I’d hate to see someone dismiss a while genre purely from their experience with a subpar interpretation of an actual book.

      • Me too! I would never do that. But I have had a few experiences with manga in the past…mostly from when I was in junior high. I don’t really remember much about it, so I didn’t mention it in my post, but I do remember not really liking it that much back then either. But I looked up the Watchmen and Girl Genius series and I’m definitely interested in checking them out and getting a better feel for the genre as a whole.

      • The best thing about both of those is that you can enjoy them OUTSIDE of a book format!

        You can watch the Watchmen “motion comic” online for free, which is what I did and it was freaking awesome. Or at least, it used to be online for free. I can’t find it anymore. T_T

        And you can see the entire Girl Genius comic online for free, which is how I got into it, because you can test it out and see how you’ll like it. http://girlgeniusonline.com/comic.php

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