When I saw this book I was intrigued. Hamsters? OK, I love hamsters. Then I read the blurb, checked out a preview, and decided that I just had to read it. It sounded to me like Rescue Rangers meets Redwall and I am totally in for that!
Since I am tired and feeling fluffy (not in a good way), I will do a good/not so good review.
First up, good!
😍I love that they are called Hamster Aquatic Mercenaries, aka HAM. That is just perfection and I was giggling at it, but in a good way of course! Later we also see another HAM, Hamster Airborne Mercenaries! OH MY, flying hamsters! YAS! And then at the end we also have another HAM group. OH MY, how many are there?
😍I was delighted that the hamsters had a matriarch to lead them! It made me smile so much!
😍Yes, for a map being added. Even two of them! We get an overview on the world and one for the hamsters and where they live.
😍Loved the dossier at the beginning with information on the various kinds of hamsters.
😍There is a training class for the pups, I would like to have seen more classes, because I am curious what these little ones are learning. I can guess the basics given how the Hamsters are battling all sorts of things (this is again based on how most of the older hamsters look).
😍The test, OH MY, that is just so much fun, though it also sounds very hard.
😍Getting character profiles was a great addition!
😍I liked that they were friends/or at least allies with a cat. Haha, I was so startled when that popped out of the bushes.
😍The action scenes were explosive and WOW.
😍While not the biggest fan, I did like seeing Beck’s journey and I could also understand why he had to take that journey.
😍I had a big laugh at what the hermit crab said at one point when Beck said he was a nobody: “How can he think that about himself… when he has such a nice belt?”
😍I liked the variety in hamsters. From very hairy to not so much hair. From bulky to fat to slender to tiny.
😍Ruby was a great character (awesome fixer and trapsmith) though I felt sorry for the little fella, I mean they just wanted to go home and I don’t blame them. All that happens in this book it can be a bit too much for a first mission.
😍The ending was really nicely done. I cannot go in deeper for the sake of spoilers, but I enjoyed it. I think it tied all the things up but made room for the next volumes.
😶The art. At times I quite liked it, though I found the older hamsters a bit too gruesome looking. I get that this is a grittier hamster universe, but still it just hurt my hamster loving heart seeing them so full of scars and pain.
😶This is the first volume, yet at times I felt as if I had missed an introduction somewhere. That is a problem I have had with other American graphic novels. Later on we do get information, but sorry, I would have liked it earlier.
😶The text was blurry at times, especially the in between extras (the files) weren’t always easy to read. Which is a shame. Can we please make ebooks/ARCs without blurriness? Shouldn’t be so hard to just upload a good file? Right?
😶The newsarticles. Eh. I didn’t really see what they had to do with the story so in the end I just skipped that when they popped up.
All in all, I am happy that I read this graphic novel. At times a bit too gritty for me, as a hamster lover I just prefer my hammies to be cute and not scared and gritty. But in overall this was an action-packed volume, and I am kind of curious about the second volume, especially since I still have many questions about the experiments and what happened to the humans. Maybe I will also request that from Netgalley.. we will see.