Will & Whit by Laura Lee Gulledge

willMy second book for the Hub Reading Challenge, also off of the Great Graphic Novels list.  When this came in for me at the library this morning I dashed out to pick it up because I had a feeling I was really going to like it. I treated myself to curling up on the couch with it right away and reading it straight through, and I was not a bit disappointed. This was wonderful-sincere, moving, and interesting.

Will (short for Wilhemina) and her friends are like many characters in novels-so much more interesting than I feel I ever was and I wish I was them. Except for the part about Will being an orphan and living with her aunt, a tragedy that she has dealt with it by not dealing with it, instead making everything fine, devoting herself to making creative lamps, and having a crippling fear of the dark.  Will loves old things and she her aunt run an antiques store.  Her friends are Noel and Autumn, and also Noel’s little sister Reese. I liked how nice they all were to her and let her hang out with them.  All three of the teens have something they’d rather not deal with (unrequited crush, steep parental expectations) and are striving to just have a fun end of summer. But then some other artsy kids come along with their Penny Farthing Carnival, featuring art installations and performances and it gives everyone the shake up they need to get their lives moving along a bit.  The other title character, Whit, is Hurricane Whitney, who causes a days long blackout (shades of Hurricane Sandy-argh!)

I really liked this and found the ending so unexpectedly moving that I became quite weepy about it. This is the sort of YA story that I could see as a regular novel, but I found it refreshing that it was a graphic novel and really liked the illustrations and the whole package.