Bone: One Volume Edition
Written and Illustrated by Jeff Smith
Published by Cartoon Books
Copyright © 2004
Fone Bone and his cousins Phoney and Smiley are run out of Boneville due to another one of Phoney Bones schemes. Out in the barren wilderness the Bones get separated by a large swarm of locusts. Fone Bone finds his way out of a barren wilderness and into a forested wilderness. Fone lives for a time in the forest until he is taken to see Thorn who takes him in because she is sure that Grandma Rose can help him. Fone Bone falls head over heels for the beautiful Thorn and is soon reunited with his cousins. But here the tale is just beginning as they are being followed and hunted by giant rat creatures, dragons, and locusts. An evil force wants to take over the entire valley and somehow the Phoney Bone has caught the attention of this evil force. In addition their new friends Rose and Thorn have a hidden secret that will plunge the bones deeper into the coming conflict than they ever could have realized. And true to his nature Phoney Bones schemes keep putting everyone in dangers way.
This book, winner of various Harvey and Eisner Awards, contains the complete bone Saga (1332 pages worth). Jeff Smith has written and inked a good versus evil tale that sucks you in with its charm and complexity. One minute you are reading simple interactions between Sunday comic strip characters with straight forward personalities – Fone is altruistic, Phoney is greedy, and Smiley is happy and stupid – and the next we are looking at elaborate scenes, well drawn people, and complicated themes of love, secrets, betrayal, and supernatural forces; etc. Smith blends these together so seamlessly, making you view this story mainly from the perspective of a Bone rather than the Humans. And though the art is all black and white it is still visually stunning, He uses darkness and light to great effect. Would color have brought more to the story? Sure, but with a little imagination you bring your own color to the story. This is hands down one of the best, if not the best, Comic/Graphic Novel I have ever read.