Fall in love all over again in volume one of the graphic novel adaptation of the global phenomenon AFTER!
New York Times Bestselling author Anna Todd’s After book series has been extremely popular since it first appeared on Wattpad. Over the years the popularity has continued to grow, and new fans are discovering the series all the time. With the release of the After Graphic Novel, we know her fanbase is only going to get bigger.
Last July when Anna Todd announced that her After series was being turned into graphic novels, we were all very excited. As you may already know, we love the After series and getting to revisit it in graphic novel format only made us fall in love with Hessa’s story all over again. For this review we’re breaking down the things we love about this latest adaptation of After.
Like in the After book, ‘After: The Graphic Novel: Volume One’ introduces us to Tessa Young as she begins her first semester of College at Washington Central University. While there she meets Hardin Scott a cocky British guy who awakens things in her she’s never felt before.
While things in the graphic novel are essentially the same as in the After book, there are a few differences. During the launch event held at Barnes and Noble, Anna Todd spoke about having to go through her book which is 582 pages to basically map out what to keep in and what to take out. That resulted in a 192-page graphic novel.
Because this is a graphic novel, things had to be shortened from parts of the story to the dialogue. They are not drastic changes though. Anna made sure to keep in the elements she knew After fans wanted to see-mainly those moments we desperately wanted to see in the After movie but didn’t end up getting.
One of those moments which is my absolute favorite happens when Hardin shows up at Tessa’s dorm room. He tosses her papers all over the place before they share a kiss. It’s sexy, and swoon-worthy and we think that illustrator Pablo Andres captured it beautifully.
One of the other things Anna Todd made sure to do with the graphic novel adaptation was to keep the side characters in like Molly, Steph, and Zed. Naturally, After fans were thrilled to get the Tessa/Hardin/Zed storyline put back in because it was an important plot that was unfortunately lost in the film adaptations. It’s nice to see those characters again because love them or hate them, they just added something extra to the story.
While ‘After: The Graphic Novel: Volume One’ does do what it’s supposed to by introducing the characters, it did feel a little quick in some moments. The slow burn between Hessa is there of course but as I said, because this isn’t the full book, it’s impossible to get every aspect of the story in.
Not only that, but graphic novels are also very different, and because they are adaptations they do have to be done in an entirely new way. We know there is still much more to this story since it is just volume one. Volume Two is supposedly set to arrive later this fall, and five additional volumes will follow.
As we told you before, we are obsessed with the illustrations done by Pablo Andres. Every single frame on every page is gorgeous. The coloring especially Hardin’s black clothes are a stark contrast to the rest of the soft and brighter colors within the graphic novel. That coloring makes Hardin stand out in a way that makes us feel like Tessa observing him and seeking him out because no one else looks like him.
One of the other things we loved is the attention to detail. So many of the characters have tattoos-not just Hardin and they are all different. The entire time I was reading the graphic novel I kept staring at Hardin’s tattoos because I was so amazed that they didn’t just look like squiggles or something to give the impression that he had tattoos.
If you want to know the process that went into creating all of the characters, be sure to read all the special notes at the end of the graphic novel. That whole section explains the process of developing the characters as well as plotting storyboards.
Overall, ‘After: The Graphic Novel: Volume One’ is a really good adaptation of Anna Todd’s After book. I think the cliffhanger took place at the right moment and you may or may not be able to guess it as you read.
I can admit I didn’t know where it would end but it was a good spot for sure. It has definitely left us wanting more and we do hope the wait for volume two isn’t a long one. We hope that this format of After will be one that brings new fans to this story who wouldn’t have typically read a regular book because it’s not their style. It may actually end up also helping new readers discover the After books.