Monday, September 22, 2014

[BOOK REVIEW] The Hardy Boys: The Ocean of Osyria Volume 1 by Scott Lobdell

Title:  The Hardy Boys: The Ocean of Osyria Volume 1

Author:  Scott Lobdell

Artist: Lea Hernandez

Genre:  Adventure / Family / Mystery

Year Published:  2005

Year Read: 9/19/2014

Series:  The Hardy Boys #1

Publisher:  Papercutz

Source:  Library

Content Rating:  Ages 7+ (Fight Scenes)


Now, I will be honest here.  I knew that the “Hardy Boys” existed in various books for decades now, but I was never able to pick up the series until just recently (or at least pick up a more modern day take on the classic book series in graphic novel format).  So, when I heard that Scott Lobdell, who was known for writing many superhero comic books in the past, was writing this series, I just had to see for myself what this series was all about! 

What is this story about?

In this volume, Frank and Joe Hardy, along with their friends Callie and Iola try to find the stolen treasure from the Middle East called the Ocean of Osyria after their friend Chet Morton was framed of stealing this priceless treasure.  It turns out that when Chet was doing an online bidding, he unknowingly came across the Ocean of Osyria, which was actually stolen and placed for bidding.  Now Joe, Frank, Callie and Iola have to journey to the Middle East to find out who framed Chet and to also get the Ocean of Osyria back!

What I loved about this story:

The premise: When I heard that Scott Lobdell was writing a more modernized take on Franklin W. Dixon’s classic “Hardy Boys” series, I just had to check this series out and see how well Scott Lobdell was able to handle this series. I actually loved the way that Scott Lobdell characterized both Frank and Joe’s relationship with each other as it is clear that they truly care about each other and yet they are always being snarky with each other.  I also loved their relationship with Chet Morton, his sister Iola and Callie as it shows that they have a close relationship with each other and that they will do anything to protect each other, especially in trying to get Chet out of jail after he was framed.

Some of Lea Hernandez’s artwork:  I mentioned that I liked some of Lea Hernandez’s artwork because I thought that the characters looked cute and I did like how the action sequences were drawn as they were quite effective.

What made me feel uncomfortable about this story:

The reason why I gave this volume a three and a half star rating was because I felt that the story was a bit too slow in many parts and as a newcomer to the “Hardy Boys” series, this volume did not explain much about how the Hardy Boys got into solving mysteries or giving us a case where the Hardy Boys start to realize that they were made for solving cases.  Also, the artwork can be a little too scratchy in places to the point where you do not quite understand what kind of action is taking place at that time.  Also, I felt that the artwork does not work for this type of story since I expected to see artwork that was a little more intense and realistic for a story that is all about solving crimes.  The only thing that prevented me from giving this volume a complete three star rating was the relationships between the characters, which I really enjoyed.

Final Thoughts:

Overall, “The Hardy Boys: The Ocean of Osyria” may have contained good chemistry between the characters and an interesting premise, but the story was just okay as the plot was a bit too slow for my tastes.  Hopefully, this series will get better in the next set of volumes.


  1. It takes more than good characters, and chemistry to hold my interest; a slow moving story is a huge mark against this book IMO. If I feel my mind starting to wander, then that's when DNFs happen.

    1. I sometimes get that too with certain books if the story is not doing it for me and I just drop it in the middle of the story.