Meanwhile: Pick Any Path. 3,856 Story Possibilities.

Meanwhile: Pick Any Path. 3,856 Story Possibilities.

by Jason Shiga


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Follow the tabs to create your own story in this groundbreaking, bestselling graphic novel, now with a revised 10th anniversary cover!

Celebrate 10 years of this completely original graphic novel take on a “choose your own adventure.” A boy stumbles upon the lab of a mad scientist who asks him to choose between testing a mind-reading device, a time machine, and a doomsday machine. Using an ingenious system of tubes and tabs, readers can decide what to explore in this completely engrossing experiment in storytelling. Sometimes the page reads right to left, sometimes up and down, and sometimes jumps from beginning to end. It’s sure to appeal to kids—and comics collectors—eager for an interactive, funny read.

Awards and praise for Jason Shiga

2004 Eisner Award
2003 Ignatz Award
2007 Stumpton Trophy Award
1999 Xeric Grant Recipient

“Crazy + Genius = Shiga” —Scott McCloud, author of Understanding Comics

“If humankind ever finds itself at the brink of its own destruction and I am given the task to fill a small, space-bound time capsule with a collection of ten graphic novels that would present to alien eyes the best that the cartoonists of Earth had to offer the universe, Jason Shiga's Meanwhile would surely be among my picks.” —Gene Luen Yang, author of American Born Chinese

“A creator of comix that can be at once funny, disturbing, thoughtful, deconstructed, and cleverly put together.” —Time online

Meanwhile is a wallop of a book/graphic novel! It delivers action, choices, problem solving, and engagement. And it reminds me of my own efforts in writing Choose Your Own Adventure, which I take as a great compliment coming from Jason Shiga. I wish I had written this book! Run, don’t walk, to your favorite bookseller and pick up a copy!” —R. A. Montgomery, Choose Your Own Adventure author

“Ingenious” —Edward Packard, Choose Your Own Adventure author

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780810984233
Publisher: ABRAMS
Publication date: 03/01/2010
Pages: 80
Sales rank: 133,946
Product dimensions: 7.70(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range: 8 - 12 Years

About the Author

Jason Shiga is the author of more than twenty comic books and the inventor of three board games, two card tricks, the greedy mug, the bus clock, and the world’s second-largest interactive comic, which spanned twenty-five square feet. In 2003, he won the Eisner award for “talent deserving of wider recognition.” He lives in Oakland, California.

Customer Reviews

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Meanwhile: Pick Any Path. 3,856 Story Possibilities 3.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
Ebinns on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is appropriate for 4th and 5th graders. The words would be to challenging for the younger grades. This book is very cool the pages has tube like tunnels that guide the reader to different parts of the page that then lead then to a different part of the book. The tabs allow the pages to move easily to part of the story. Readers are trying to crack the code to get to the top secret. This book is lots of funny and will lead you on a new path every time. Teachers could use this book to:-As a free choice read. Students would really like this on their book shevels so they could read it on their own.-Have students make predictions on what will happen before, during, and after. Have the write it in their journals so they can share the findings after.
Shiko99 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Remember those classic comics where you read left-to-right or right-to-left depending where you live on the globe? Well, in Jason Shiga's "Meanwhile", he puts a whole new twist to the traditional word "comic". In this book, you'll be reading up and down, left to right and even off the pages to another! Many secret codes may be found, but cheating your way through is never a way to discover its telltale secrets! Your goal is to find the best possible ending; technically, this is at least 15 books in one book! The story is about a young boy who you play as in this world; you get to make his life changing decisions. The first one comes up very quickly, where you meet this crossroad of tubes you can follow; you either pick the left road, or the right. Your decisions can lead to a neverending spiral, a bad or good ending or even lead you to kill him. The decision is yours. Although some pages look similar, it's not a photocopy error. This makes the reader quite confused a times, and may become frustrating. But, if you can decipher the storyline and at least follow it, Jason Shiga will give you an interesting comic read that will last you at least a week! This book is best for readers who enjoy "Choose your own Adventure" Books, and comic-lovers; if you are one of those, pick up this book right now and you won't be disappointed.
sylliu on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Meanwhile is the ultimate, mind-boggling choose-your-own-adventure book, with every page and almost every panel providing multiple choices for the reader. A boy who visits an ice cream shop and is soon embroiled in a mad scientist's three inventions, a time machine, a thought-reader, and a world-ending "killitron" machine. Using a finger to follow little tubes that branch from one panel to another, and to different pages, the reader can explore 3,856 story possibilities, with most ending in doom and destruction. Meanwhile was entertaining for my kids for the first few readings (each of which involved reading multiple story lines), but we were ultimately frustrated by repeatedly coming to our doom or looping back to where we started. Definitely worth a look, if only to admire the sheer complexity and ingenuity of the story.
twonickels on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is going to be a hit with my library kids, but as someone who is a completist by nature I found it totally exhausting. It is IMPOSSIBLE to follow every storyline, and I get seriously frustrated when I can¿t do that. Not for me, but does what it does well.
ElizaJane on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Reason for Reading: This is a Cybils '10 nominee and required reading for me as a graphic novels panelist.Well, this *is* a book but a very unique one. You've never seen anything like this before: plastic pages with tabs all along the edges and tubes that run up, down, right, left and all over the place. In fact, this is more like playing a game than reading a book. You start out with the choice of chocolate or vanilla ice cream and from there on every choice you make changes the story and the possible outcome. Certain places you need access codes but if you haven't found the code yet you have to keep going hoping you will find it later and be able to find your way back again. This is very much like the old Choose Your Own Adventure books, well it *is* like them but on a graphic level and a much more complicated (mathematical) level in which it has been made. There really and truly is no way to back track, make the wrong choice and try to cheat by going back and picking differently? Hah! I tried it; it's a wicked maze and just can't be done. You find yourself going in circles, going through parts you've been through over and over but this is good because now is when you can change your choices or try to find that access code.I played three times. Vanilla is my favourite ice cream; I know, boring, so I choose vanilla first and well boring is as boring does. The vanilla route is a boring little story that takes you home. You have to choose chocolate to get into the story! So the next time I played I chose chocolate and played for a long time going around in circles trying to find that access code, playing with the inventions, having fun, but eventually started getting tired of the continuous circles and suddenly found myself at the ice cream store again and chose vanilla. Hah! A way out of the game, I got sent home. OK, third try, chocolate, must find access code, going in circles, going to the bathroom, yes found the code! more circles, lots of going in circles, met myself twice in the past, played with the inventions over and over and over, circles anyone? and then in the end I killed everybody on earth but me! Fun! This would be a great book to have in the back seat of the car, to put in the silent reading area for reluctant readers and should be in every doctor and dentist's office in the world!
WSRobitaille on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This children¿s graphic novel has been formatted so that you can choose how you want the story to unfold and may be confusing for younger readers or people used to reading graphic novels in the traditional manner. As explained by the introduction page, you follow the story by following a series of connector pipes that lead you in maze like directions from frame to frame and from page to page. Although the cover boasts 3856 story possibilities, at 80 pages, there is a lot of overlapping in the possible story outcomes. Once the logistics of reading it are out of the way, the stories that unfold are amusing and can range into areas of time travel, memory transfer and doomsday machines. I found the story lines and illustrations to be simple, funny and fairly engaging, and the fact that you can read this book several different times and come away with different outcomes adds to the appeal.
llpollac on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
With the question 'Chocolate or vanilla?' the reader of 'Meanwhile' embarks on a graphic-novel/choose-your-own-adventure crossover where a series of choices can lead to 3856 possible stories. The art and text are arranged in a non-linear fashion, linked by a series of tubes that connect various parts of the book in all directions, with different parts of different stories presented on the same page and tabs along the edge of each page to assist with finding the leaf a tube leaving the page is headed to. The individual stories are straightforward and straight out of b-movies and comic books, but the branching of the possibilities can be mind-blowing. It is also possible for the reader to become caught in a loop of story, which could be frustrating to some readers. The art is done in an appealing comic style, but the directionality of the connecting tubes is in some cases confusing, and many people will need to follow the tubes with a finger to keep their place. This is not a book to introduce graphic novels, but for experienced readers of the format, 'Meanwhile' will be an engaging read which pushes the limit of what can be done with the printed page. This book would be a great choice for middle school boys, or anyone who identifies as a geek and cares more about how the story is told than the story itself.
allaboutliteracy on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A new kind of choose your own adventure book. What kind of ice cream do you want today? A very creative and intricate aggregate of storylines. It is a little confusing and requires a bit of concentration with the navigation the first time, but can provide hours of fun guiding your own story and starting a new one.
jorgearanda on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A clever little puzzle in the form of a graphic novel in the "choose-your-own-adventure" style.
MeganMcBrown on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This one is a pretty cool concept because it's a combo of a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure and graphic novel. I think kids enjoy reading the choose your own adventure like books because they can read the book multiple times and have a different storyline each time. However, the art in the book isn't anything special. The panels of comic in the story are hard to follow, you have to follow a path of lines to pick the tab you turn to for the next segment of the story. I had a hard time the second page I turned to. You follow the tube that is the color you picked at boxes that split off, but having to follow panels up and down and around a page, with multiple storylines you can pick on each page is pretty confusing. I pretty much gave up on this book because it didn't seem worth the effort---even if following the storyline was simple, the story wasn't worth reading.This book would be fine for any age in the 4th-8th grade range. It's probably geared more toward boys.
Stephanyk on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is appropriate for the fourth and fifth grades. This graphic novel may be complicated for younger students because readers have to carefully follow a tube to read it. There are many different story possibilities depending on which tube the reader chooses to follow. The reader begins with the simple choice of having to choose either vanilla or chocolate for an ice cream flavor. Then the choices become more complicated and the reader can discover secret codes and complete crazy mazes. The reader chooses the path for the character and that path can end in a failure or success. There is only one path to success. Readers can feel free to go back and choose a new path (different colored tube) at anytime. The book is interesting because the pages aren't read forward but they can also go backwards. Each comic boxes can be read up, down, left or right depending on which way the tubes move. Readers have to really stay focused to follow a long.Uses in classroom:- I would divide the class into groups and as a group they choose their paths. At the end the groups will share what happened in their story.- Have students create their own books with alternate endings.- Have the book in the class library for students to explore and find the secret codes on their own or with a partner.
AnneBaron on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is the kind of book that keeps on giving. I have read it several times and had a different story each time. It is clever with it's unconventional use of puzzles and follow the line type mazes to get a different outcome each time, and it all starts with deciding if you want vanilla or chocolate. It reminds me of the chose your own adventure books, but more fun.This book has been made to endure many readings with heavy plasticoated pages. I think it would be best suited for an older elementary school aged child to be able to figure out how to read it, but once it is deciphered it would give many hours of enjoyment.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
so cool
creative34 More than 1 year ago
This is a fantastic, fascinating graphic novel. My seven-year-old has not been able to put it down, and frankly neither have I. It is a graphic novel in the style of "Choose Your Own Adventure," where the reader has to follow a pathway marked on each illustrated panel. Just the activity of following the thread of the story with your finger as it zig-zags across the page and across pages is itself fun and engaging. The story is also surprisingly interesting and thought-provoking, even mind-bending. What starts as an innocuous choice -- vanilla or chocolate ice cream? -- leads the reader through tricky questions of probability, free choice, and responsibility. Trying to make the right choices, so that you can keep the story going, is what will bring young readers back to the book again and again. The illustrations are colorful and amusing and the language is easy for kids to understand. The pages are not made of paper but of some thin, strong plastic so that the book will stand up to the constant page-turning that the story requires.
PTAMom411 More than 1 year ago
Helps you choose your own adventure so it is good for learning about yourself and your friends. Definitely funny. Interestingly plotted. I really enjoyed choosing my own adventure. It is funny because there are many silly choices to choose from such as deciding between chocolate and vanilla decides the whole way the story goes.
Ellie15 More than 1 year ago
This is bit more than a choose-your-own-adventure story. It's a comic book filled with adventure, humor and a couple puzzles to solve. Brilliantly put together- the author (a mathematician) is a genius! For ages 6-11
Chicago_Batgirl More than 1 year ago
This book is creative and beautifully presented with such a creative approach to story writing and comics, however the over riding them of death and killing machine is not appropriate in any way for children. I unfortunately bought this book for my daughter (10 year old) and did not skim the story as I usually do and found out after my daughter starting crying at one of the versions of the story that killing is a sub topic. The particular story strain that she followed had everyone killed by one of the characters choosing to push a button on the killing machine killing everyone and everything. I have been back in the book store and pointed out to our well informed children's section B&N associate the inappropriateness and showed her specifically but she did not seem to really care. So be careful when buying this book.