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In the first volume of Goodnight Mrs. Goose, Jorge Santiago, Jr. puts a new twist on the idea of fairytales coming into the reality of the human world. Putting storybook characters into real life situations might seem cliche but Jorge brings forth a character not usually seen in fairytale spinoffs; the queen of nursery rhymes to combat these not-so-normal incidents, Mother Goose.
Valerie Z. Clark is the heroine chosen by Mother Goose to borrow her magical powers and help put the rampant fairytale creatures back into their stories and find out who is letting them loose.
Mrs. Clark is not just a hero in disguise, she is also lawyer, wife and mother struggling to balance her work with her family life and when she must add hero to her long list of roles, she may find it to be too much. She soon finds out she has no choice but to accept yet another role.
The start of Mrs. Clark’s troubles is when wins a case and her client rewards her with a gingerbread cookie that turns out to be not your average cookie. He may be sassy, but he also seems to be almost invincible. Mrs. Clark tries to crush him numerous times and also breaks him in half whenever she feels he needs to learn some respect towards her.
Mr. Brown, the cookie, has his work cut out for him when dealing with this high strung and highly stressed woman. Not only does she not know her nursery rhymes, which she needs to repeat in order to call upon her powers, but also has a very difficult time believing that all that she is going through is real and not just hallucinations brought on by her overly tired brain.
The art of Goodnight Mrs. Goose also adds to the overall enjoyability of the storyline. Although the artwork seems inconsistent throughout this manga, there are many instances when the reader can see the artist, who is also the author, developing his style and improving.
It is easy to tell where he took the time to really put his thoughts into images and convey the struggles and magical essences of the characters and where the figures and backgrounds seem rushed. There are times when the proportions of the characters become distracting and though there are times when they are appropriate, the hazy bubbles and other odd shapes in the background are overused.
Overall, this first volume is an excellent start to what looks to be an enjoyable series. Readers will find themselves wanting to see how Mrs. Clark deals with new fairytale critters and if she and Mr. Brown can keep her professional and family life separate from her magical life. Also, the brief glimpses readers get of the artist behind the author will keep them in suspense of seeing what Jorge will bring into his art in future volumes.
Overall rating: 3.5/5