Johnny Recruit - CoverIn May, 2021, I was allowed to share the first few pages of a dystopian graphic novel written by Thomas John Behe called 'Contraband' (click here for more information). Now, it's his son's turn to write an adventure. His son Theo, who's written an adventure that's bold, brazen, and very, very brave. Here, check it out...

forbidden planet

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So what's this story all about? Theo's new story is called 'Johnny Recruit', and it's set during World War II (1939 to 1945), where we see the main character, named Johnny, getting involved with one of the most brutal, badly-hatched raids throughout the war. Or to be more specific about it, 'The Dieppe Raid', which included three thousand troops (mostly Canadian), who were either killed, wounded, or taken prisoner by the opposing German Army.

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Is this a true story? Well, it's based on real-life events, and conveyed using a series of dramatic double-page spreads, similar to the recruitment, war bond, and blood donation posters designed during this period. It's also a silent story where all of the context is visual rather than textual.

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Who provided the illustrations for 'Johnny Recruit'? Thomas Muzzell, who's a Canadian illustrator with a passion for inking scenic landscapes featuring real people! He has been an artist for over forty years and generally prefers to draw and ink his work by hand.

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Who's Theo Behe? Theo's a fourteen-year-old Canadian student from London, England, who loves reading, writing, playing football, and studying biology and history. In fact, he loves studying history so much, that this story started out as a school project (a project that was inspired by his great uncle's heroics during World War II).

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Tell me more. Theo's great uncle, Bert, was a RAF flying ace with thirteen and a half Nazi kills and two Distinguished Flying Crosses to his name. Coincidentally, Thomas Muzzell's uncle was also called Bert. Although, in his case, he fought several successful missions as a ground soldier until he was captured by the German Army in 1943. That's when he became a POW for the remainder of the war.

To find out more about 'Johnny Recruit', please feel free to check out the official Website, Facebook, and Twitter pages.

JOHNNY RECRUIT (PREVIEW) JOHNNY RECRUIT (PREVIEW) Reviewed by David Andrews on February 28, 2022 Rating: 5

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