I read this GN online. The main character is a little girl named Lee who lives in Charon, Mississippi back during segregation. She’s a black girl and has a white friend named Lily. When Lily goes missing in the bayou, Lee’s father is accused of killing her. Lee is determined to find Lily and save her father.
I really wanted to like this book. The art is gorgeous and the premise is interesting. It’s not that I didn’t like it – I just don’t think I really understood it. It’s not a straightforward book. The premise seems that way, but then comes in all the fantastic elements. Dead people come back to life as butterfly-creatures or are cured of being run through with a pole by a sand mixture. There are swamp monsters and dog-sheriffs and men who can shape-shift. I know it’s all symbolism, I know, but I am not smart enough to understand all the symbolism. Honestly, I think I’d like this much better if I had a group of people to sit down and talk it out with. It would make a really good classroom book (though not too young, as it’s pretty violent/gruesome in places).
And in writing this review, I realized I actually read more than just the first volume of Bayou, which was my intention. Apparently the online version is the 4 chapters of Vol 1 + 3 chapters of Vol 2 (with more to be added later). No wonder the last chapter seemed a bit weird for an end…I was thinking it was just meant to be a cliffhanger. I suppose when the next chapter is put online, I’ll have to go look at it, since Vol 2 is not in print until this summer.