Title: The Dresden Files: Welcome to the Jungle
Author: Jim Butcher & Ardian Syaf
Release Date: October 14, 2008
Publisher: Del Rey
Genre: Graphic Novel, Urban Fantasy
Source: Personal Copy
Rating: 4 out of 5
Taking place right before the events of the first Dresden Files novel Storm Front, Welcome to the Jungle chronicles Harry’s involvement in events at the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago. When a security guard is found dead at the zoo, and fingers point towards an innocent gorilla, it’s up to Harry to clear the animal’s name and prove that there are supernatural forces at work.
I don’t need to express my love for The Dresden Files to regular readers of this blog; it’s one of my favorite series currently being written. For a long time, I wasn’t aware that a Dresden Files graphic novel had been written, but once I found it, I immediately knew I had to have it. I’m becoming increasingly interested in the world of graphic novels, and one set in my favorite urban fantasy world was completely enticing.
I absolutely loved experiencing The Dresden Files in this new medium. The back of the graphic novel contains concept art for two different Harry Dresdens, one of which is featured on the pictured cover. This portrait of Dresden didn’t really agree with my mental picture; it makes him look more like a scruffy teenager than the tough, witty wizard I’ve come to know and love. The second portrait (which is in keeping with the portrayal of Harry in the graphic novel artwork), however, is exactly as I’ve always seen Harry in my head. I absolutely loved having the chance to watch him, rather than just read and imagine him, working his magic.
The Dresden Files translates incredibly well to a graphic novel format. Butcher chronicles how difficult it really is to write a graphic novel (the phrase “a picture is worth a thousand words” is apt) , but he did a great job with this. The story is intriguing and fun, and the artwork is wonderful. Ardian Syaf uses a great color scheme for the story, and I loved all the visuals.
Welcome to the Jungle is great for avid fans of the series, but it’s also perfect for those who are interested in The Dresden Files (maybe because I’ve been raving about the books for so long on this blog). Because the events take place before the first book in the series, readers get an introduction to Harry, and the graphic novel won’t spoil any of the ongoing storylines. It’s not too much of a time commitment, and manages to capture the spirit of the novels, as well as Harry’s great wit, all in this great and easy-to-read graphic novel format.