Book: Giant Days Volume 1 and 2 by John Allison
Release Date: November 2015 / April 2016
Tags: Contemporary / College / Coming of Age / New Adult / Graphic Novel / Gothic / Friendship / Female Friendship / LGBTQ+ / Lesbians
Trigger Warnings: Drug Use
Volume Seperate Rating: Vol 1: 5 stars / Vol 2: 4 stars
Susan, Esther, and Daisy started at university three weeks ago and became fast friends. Now, away from home for the first time, all three want to reinvent themselves. But in the face of handwringing boys, “personal experimentation,” influenza, mystery-mold, nu-chauvinism, and the willful, unwanted intrusion of “academia,” they may be lucky just to make it to spring alive. Going off to university is always a time of change and growth, but for Esther, Susan, and Daisy, things are about to get a little weird.
Giant Days might be a graphic novel you have heard about before. This year the Dutch publisher published volume 1 and 2 (so issues 1 to 8) in one bind-up volume called New Friends. I thought that was the perfect reason to pick it up. It is, le gasp, a contemporary one. I’ve heard great things about this series and I wasn’t going to let the genre hold me back, and I was right because I loved it.
Giant Days follows the three roommates Esther, Susan and Daisy as they find their way in life after high school and at college. It is their coming of age story. There is no over arching plot beyond that but that was okay. The characters and humor are great enough for that not to matter and there is a sense of direction. The three girls are very different and come from different backgrounds. Esther is our feminine, gothic and accident prone lady. Susan is more in your face, independent and prefers comfort over looking nice. Daisy is initially more shy and withdrawn but with a kind heart. They’ve bonded over starting college and as the two volumes continue their friendship starts to deepen.
Volume 1 was a great introduction to these characters and their lives. I loved the humor and exploring their lives. Volume 2 was also good but it lost me a little on the part where Susan went home. To me that felt out of place with the rest of the volume.
Onto the art as that is a huge part of graphic novels. I like the art well enough. I like the colors and the art is mostly consistent. For me some of the lining is a bit too thick in places, but that is a very personal preference. In volume 2 the artist changed and its noticeable but it doesn’t disrupt things.