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‘Cretaceous:’ Advance Graphic Novel Review

DINOSAURS! Sold! However, I’m not gonna lie, the dino-nut in me was mildly apprehensive about how good this could possibly be. For one, the mish-mash of the different periods of the Mesozoic era in the Jurassic Park series has always bugged me, and, for another, I’m a huge fan of Ricardo Delgado’s Age of Reptiles series which seemed like a high bar to clear. Good news, fellow dinosaur aficionados, Tadd Galusha’s Cretaceous doesn’t include any dinosaurs from before 145 million years ago, AND they’re all actually found on the island continent of Laramidia (back when North America was split in two by the Western Interior Seaway). Score one for accuracy!

Similar to Delgado’s wordless dino-centric series, Cretaceous takes us on an emotional romp, following a Tyrannosaurus rex on a very personal mission while also checking in on several different species along the way. Some of these species are childhood favorites (e.g., Triceratops and Parasaurolophus), but Galusha shows off his dino chops with some lesser-known beasties (e.g., Dromaeosaurus and Pachyrhinosaurus), too. The illustrations are beautifully rendered with amazing dinosaur designs, textures, lighting, and variety of dynamic angles; however, it’s also in the wonderful details that we’re shown an unforgiving and ferocious world in which only the fittest survive and even the strong are at the mercy of their environment.

Clocking in at just shy of 150 pages, this is a hefty volume that doesn’t overstay its welcome. The pacing feels right and the action never lags, and even when the story hits its quiet moments, there’s just so much to see. It absolutely feels like watching a documentary about a truly remarkable ecosystem of a bygone era.

Final note: As mentioned earlier, there are quite a few scenes which are pretty graphic in their savagery, so this may not be the best book for a child.

Creative Team: Tadd Galusha (writer, illustrator)
Publisher: Oni Press
Click here to purchase.

Wenxian Tan, Fanbase Press Contributor



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