Review: Small Things & Snow White

On the cusp of having everything slip from his grasp, a young boy has to find a way to rebuild his sense of self. An ordinary boy in an ordinary world. With no words, only illustrations, Small Things tells the story of a boy who feels alone with worries but who learns that help is always close by. An extraordinary story, told simply and with breath taking beauty.


Small Things left me speechless. It’s only has 40 pages but it left me (of all people who love to talk) speechless. The story is beautifully told through variations of panels, with some panels taking up a page and others stitched together eloquently.


  • THE ART is extremely beautiful. The ‘monsters’ that represent anxiety and depression are just perfect depictions of how one feels when they question themself, doubt themselves and are eaten alive by worry.
  • OUR MAIN CHARACTER goes on a journey on trying to overcome their worry and seeing people who are there for him was just heart warming.
  • BLACK AND WHITE was such a great choice for this book. It really let you explore how our main character was feeling.
  • THE VARIOUS PANELS of the art strips were beautiful. As mentioned before they were put together so eloquently and really let the story flow.
  •  I HAD NO WORDS AFTER, it was that beautiful, breath taking and left me amazed. Mel left us with a irreplaceable treasure that’ll leave everyone who reads it speechless.


There was nothing to dislike about this graphic novel. It was one of those novels that didn’t need dialogue, just the pictures. I recommend this book to everyone because it’s just exquisite and a fascinating read, for all ages. Hence why I’ve given it five stars.
Thanks Allen & Unwin for providing The Aus. Library with a review copy!
Award-winning graphic novelist Matt Phelan delivers a darkly stylized noir Snow White set against the backdrop of Depression-era Manhattan.
The scene: New York City, 1928. The dazzling lights cast shadows that grow ever darker as the glitzy prosperity of the Roaring Twenties screeches to a halt. Enter a cast of familiar characters: a young girl, Samantha White, returning after being sent away by her cruel stepmother, the Queen of the Follies, years earlier; her father, the King of Wall Street, who survives the stock market crash only to suffer a strange and sudden death; seven street urchins, brave protectors for a girl as pure as snow; and a mysterious stock ticker that holds the stepmother in its thrall, churning out ticker tape imprinted with the wicked words “Another . . . More Beautiful . . . KILL.” In a moody, cinematic new telling of a beloved fairy tale, extraordinary graphic novelist Matt Phelan captures the essence of classic film noir on the page—and draws a striking distinction between good and evil.
I was very excited to read this graphic novel, because SNOW WHITE and THE 1920’s. How could I pass that up?
  • THE ART is just beautiful. I am utterly in love with the black and white water colour art.
  • MIXED MEDIA. We have water colour (which is absolutely my favourite), pencil and charcoal. It’s absolutely stunning once put together.
  • THE CHARACTERS are wonderful. We have The Seven and they are precious. You may want to protect them at all costs, but these boys can definitely take care of themselves.
  • THE ENDING WAS PERFECT. My heart sang at the ending and how we went into full colour from black and white.
  • FILM NOIR vibes from this graphic novel. Just so beautiful.


  • RARE DIALOGUE which made it hard to really love the story. The art was beautiful, don’t get me wrong, but the dialogue would have helped with the narration of the story.
  • SOMETIMES I WAS LOST because the art was either too jumbled or just didn’t flow.
  • THE HITMEN just came out of no where. Plus their story/importance was very vague. I was very confused.
  • I DIDN’T GET IT. The ticker tape? The mother’s jealousy at the very beginning? The story line was just messy at some points and I had to guess and assume so many things.


I really enjoyed Snow White, but really let it down was how over crowded the scenes were on certain pages and the scarce dialogue. Also, the killers and the ticker tape were very confusing to follow. So this is why Snow White has earned three stars.

Thanks Walker Books Australia for providing The Aus. Library with a review copy!

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