Author: Adam Smith
Artists: Jim Campbell, V.V. Glass, Hilary Jenkins
Publisher: Oni Press
Released: February 11th, 2019
I received a copy of At the End of Your Tether through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.
At the End of Your Tether is a unique graphic novel that comes from the same minds that brought us Brick and Paper Towns. If you’re a fan of non-linear time-traveling plots, then this is absolutely the tale for you to check out.
Set during the summer of 1997 (mostly), this series is one that will make you ask questions. Ludo Carre is used to traveling around the world, jumping from one base to the other. He knows how the base homes feel, and even has a theory about why they were designed that way.
But none of that could have prepared him for the journey he was about to find himself on. And it all started the moment he met Arlo. Arlo is a charismatic girl; the ideal nerd-girl who is confident and passionate.
So her disappearance was as shocking as it was devastating. Ludo is not the type of person to let the world change around him – he’s always been inclined to beat his way through things and people, given the opportunity. And thus he is poorly equipped to dealing with this sudden and painful change.
I’m going to be honest here; I didn’t like At the End of Your Tether nearly as much as I was hoping or expecting. It wasn’t a bad read, by any means. But I also feel like it didn’t reach its full potential here.
Non-linear storytelling is tough to get right, but when it is done right it can be absolutely mind-blowing. That wasn’t quite the case here. While the storytelling style did an excellent job of obfuscating the truth, it left me feeling like the waters of the story got muddled along the way. It was so close…just not quite there.
I will say that the artwork in At the End of Your Tether is without a doubt my favorite part of this graphic novel. Which isn’t surprising, given that it was the cover that originally caught my attention, to begin with.
I loved the art style used. In many ways, I feel like the artwork exceeded the story, both in the application and in the way it elicited emotions. I would happily read a dozen other stories with this artwork, if given half the chance. I loved it that much.
At the End of Your Tether may not have been the read I was hoping for or expecting. But it was still a graphic novel that made me think, and you know how much I appreciate that sort of thing. And it certainly was a memorable reading experience.