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Delicate Creatures [Hardcover]

J. Michael Straczynski , J. Michael Staczynski , Michael Zulli
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Feb. 19 2002 Delicate Creatures
In Delicate Creatures, Image Comics` first all-original hardcover, J. Michael Straczynski turns his gaze towards the fairytale and leaves you wondering how much is tale and how much is truth. Like all of Straczynski`s work, he provides an intelligent examination of a cliche-ridden genre that will rise above and challenge the best literature currently available.

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They loved the castle. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars A Darker Type Of Fairy Tale. Nov. 11 2002
Delicate Creatures shatters whatever preconceived notions you might have about Fairy Tales. Starting with a breezy introduction, where we get to know the various Fairies and Sprites inhabiting the walls of a Castle in an anonymous foreign land, the story quickly moves into darker territory, dealing with the real-life terrors of war and genocide. The darker aspects of the tale are dealt with honestly, but delicately enough that younger readers will be able to deal with them. There were parts of the story that brought a lump to my throat; I think that parents and children reading together would find a lot to discuss about Delicate Creatures, particularly the themes of love and loss. The story is told in prose, with occasional illustrations by Artist Michael Zulli. Zulli's art is fantasic and the lush colors (By Steve Firchow) make the pictures come to life. The story, by Babylon 5 creator J. Michael Straczynski, is gut-wrenching at times, but in true Fairy-Tale fashion, things turn out ok in the end. I believe all involved have created a new classic, one that will hopefully be discovered by Parents and Children alike in years to come.
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I bought this book because I was very curious about this "new twist" on fairy tales and I love JMS' other works: his run on "Amazing Spider-Man," Babylon 5, Rising Stars. . .and now, "Delicate Creatures." I didn't get a chance to flip through it before I bought it, I was expecting your typical graphic novel but the writing, coloring, and illustrations are more like a story book, giving it a long-lasting quality. I found the story to be very sweet in some areas, and in others rather sad. Emotions while reading weren't of the laugh or cry variety, more like a pleasant interest in the goings on of the characters and an inclination to see the story through to its finish. The artwork is beautiful, as are the colors - nothing in your face or too wispy. I would say this book is less a commentary on fairy tales and more a commentary on ideas. Fairy tales are ideas but the ideas in this book aren't just fanciful, they have a context in reality as well. I suppose this still doesn't answer the question, "Why should I buy this book?" 1)if you like any of JMS' other work and 2)if you want to read something with depth and grace. At first I considered giving this book 4 stars because I didn't feel like the story had any kind of earth shattering concepts, but in thinking that I realize I am a victim of hype. Also, I am very much interested in reading books of all sorts of philosophies so some things aren't new ideas to me (if you like this book you may be interested in terry pratchet's "hogfather"). I find no fault in this book, it is something I am proud to place on my bookshelf and share (if they're very careful with it) with my friends. If you're at all unsure after reading this review, I encourage you to seek this book out in your local bookstore and flip through it, maybe even find a comfortable chair and read it (it's not a very long read). I think you'll enjoy it.
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Let's take a quick count -- so far J. Michael Straczynski has revolutionized television sci-fi ("Babylon 5"), horror ("Midnight Nation") and superheroes ("Spider-Man" and "Rising Stars"). Why not tackle fairy tales next?
The story centers around a group of fairies who live in a house, unseen by its human inhabitants. New ones arrive and it's like they've always been there. Old ones disappear and they are mourned. It's a clever story, but not exactly groundbreaking...
Until the twist at the halfway point. I refuse to give it away, but the curveball Straczynski throws regarding something as simple as the setting takes this story down a path no one would have guessed, turning it from a simple children's story to a heartbreaking cautionary tale that can appeal to anyone with even a passing knowledge of the some of the real-life horrors that have been perpetrated in this world.
Good for kids, great for adults, "Delicate Creatures" is, simply put, a must-read.
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