Book review by Aarene Storms: Fence - Vol 1

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Fence - volume 1 by C.S. Pacat and Johanna the Mad

Nicholas is a scrapper, an underfed, under-educated kid who loves fencing and needs to make the school fencing team to assure his scholarship. He's determined to win, but he has a lot to learn.

Though these characters in this book echo the athletic drive seen in Check Please (Ngozi Ukazu, 2018), the story lacks the good-natured comradeship between team members, leaving a lot more narrative tension.

Readers looking for a realistic sport story in graphic novel format will be pleased, and those who know nothing about epee fencing will find themselves drawn into examining the drawings for small details that make big differences in a fast match.

Bullying, some cussing, some off-page sexual situations. Recommended for sport fans, ages 12 to adult.

The events may not have happened; still, the story is true. --R. Silvern

Aarene Storms, youth services librarian
Richmond Beach and Lake Forest Park Libraries, KCLS


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