To say that I read Broxo would be misleading. I devoured it. Not only is it beautifully illustrated and chalk-full of characters you want to box up and take home with you to show your friends, the action comes on faster than a machine gun on crank.
Did I mention there was a Wampa-esque ice creature and zombies? Oh yes, lots and lots of zombies, and of course the chopping-up of said zombies.
The story opens upon a charred and desolate mountaintop. Giallongo is so effective in depicting the bleakness of his world that you can almost feel the cold seeping from the pages into your fingers. It is here we meet barbarian princess Zora, who has abandoned her family in search of another clan. Why has she left her family to embark on this quest, you ask? None of your business! Sorry, I mean, you’ll simply have to read the book to find out!
What I can tell you is that instead of finding the people she was looking for, she comes across Broxo, an uncouth, smelly boy who lives alone save for the aforementioned faithful ice creature. Broxo introduces Zora to the local culinary delights and attractions which include charred lizard and slicing the noggins off of the hoards of undead that roam the mountainside.
The dialogue between the two teenagers is sharp, funny and endearing. Broxo possesses street smarts, a "when in doubt always use a sword" kind of attitude which is paired effectively with Zora's refined yet guarded approach to life's situations.
The undead aren’t their only problem, though. There’s Gloth, a cowardly yet savage wolf that has the ability to talk through his seemingly endless rows of razor sharp teeth. Gloth patrols the land, looking for easy prey. He and Broxo have a history, and as you might expect, their paths are destined to meet again very soon.
Then there’s Ulith, a mysterious witch who has the ability to observe Zora & Broxo from afar with the help of her animal servants. Giallongo does a good job keeping the reader guessing what Ulith’s relationship to Broxo and her role in Zora’s quest is until nearer the end, with satisfying results.
Broxo is a graphic novel that sticks in your brain, it’s like snorting super glue. Actually, it’s nothing like snorting glue. In fact, do NOT snort super glue, ever. What I’m trying to say is that Broxo is awesome, Giallongo has created a rich, loveable cast of characters in a world you want to spend a lot more time in, even if the food is bad. I’d recommend this graphic novel to anyone aged twelve and up.