Monday, January 2, 2012

Laddertop: Volume 1

Laddertop: Volume 1
by Orson Scott Card, Emily Janice Card, and Zina Card
illustrated by Honoel A. Ibardolaza

Twenty-five years ago, the alien Givers came to Earth. They gave the human race the greatest technology ever seen— four giant towers known as Ladders that rise 36,000 miles into space and culminate in space stations that power the entire planet. Then, for reasons unknown, the Givers disappeared. Due to the unique alien construction of the Laddertop space stations, only a skilled crew of children can perform the maintenance necessary to keep the stations up and running.

Back on Earth, competition is fierce to enter Laddertop Academy. It is an honor few students will achieve. Robbi and Azure, two eleven-year-old girls who are the best of friends, are candidates for the Academy. They will become entangled in a dangerous mystery that may help them solve the riddle of the Givers...if it doesn’t destroy the Earth first! (description from

As you may or may not know, I'm not a huge manga/graphic novel reader. I've really been trying to broaden my horizons though, because I feel it's an important aspect of my job, and when I heard that Orson Scott Card had created a manga series I knew I needed to check it out.

Orson Scott Card, and his daughters who collaborated with him on this project, did another great job creating a riveting science fiction story with great children characters. I love the idea that aliens would have left technology for us that we could not quite understand. I love the idea of brave kids going up into space. I loved that in this volume, we got to see the training and selection process, but I really, really can't wait to see them get their "monkeys" and begin their actual work on the ladders.

I loved that the illustrator created characters that were easy to identify. They each had their own unique style. I only got confused once about whether a character was a girl or a boy. I also found the action/panels to be really easy to follow in this series. I think that even non-pro manga readers would have an easy time with this one.

As a science fiction fan, I think I've found a new, exciting manga series to follow!!

Full disclosure: Review copy received from Tor

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