Monday, October 15, 2012
Chew Volume One: Taster's Choice - The Review
Chew Volume One: Taster's Choice by John Layman
Let me start by saying this is a book about a guy who can taste the past. Just let that swim around in your brain for a second. You may feel a bit confused, because when I first heard about this book, I was too. Then I heard the rest of the plot and spent the next week locked in my room, contemplating the meaning of life along with all the other profound questions that we associate with existence. Okay, that might be a bit of an exaggeration, but this book is sweet and it makes you think. It has an original plot, and with all the books out there that don't contain original plots, I'd say that makes it worth reading all on its own.
Chew Volume One begins by explaining things. This is good, because there is a lot of explaining to do. It also does the explaining quickly, which helps keep the story moving. Within the first two pages we are provided with the name of our protagonist, Tony Chu, who is a cibopath. This means he can effectively see the history of anything he eats. For example, if he eats an apple, he can see the tree where it came from, what pesticides were used on it, when it was picked, its journey to the supermarket, so on and so forth. With meats it is a similar, albeit more gruesome process. Are you excited yet? I should also mention that he is a detective who uses his abilities in the field. That said, Tony exists in a world where the distribution of chicken is illegal, and its sale prohibited.
If you aren't totally excited and dying to read this book by now, then its quite possible you won't be interested at all. Unless of course you can appreciate solid, stylized writing, and beautiful, full color illustrations. Yeah it has those too. It is a graphic novel after all, and a darn good one in my opinion. If you take the time to read it, you won't be disappointed.