Long Way Down: The Graphic Novel (Hardcover)
"Jason Reynolds (When I Was the Greatest, All American Boys) is already one of the best writers in any genre, so I had high expectations for Long Way Down, Jason's first novel written in verse. Those expectations were shattered...and a half. This gritty, surreal story is really a polemic on the corrosive nature of revenge, and it is BRILLIANT! The last line is as good a closing to a book as I've read in a long time. This will be taught in schools for years to come... Read it." - Len Vlahos, owner— Len Vlahos
Long Way Down navigates gun violence through verse within the claustrophobic confines of a smoky elevator, conjuring a moment-to-moment story that must be followed until the fateful finale. Will’s brother has just been shot and killed, leaving Will traveling down six stories with a gun tucked into his waistband for revenge. He must follow his neighborhood’s Rules for avenging deaths, but past tragedies probe the future’s consequences and make Will’s confrontation more complex than he originally thought. Fans of Reynolds’ previous All American Boys (co-written with author Brendan Kiely) or Angie Thomas’ The Hate U Give will find another worthy Coretta Scott King honoree in the electric and urgent Long Way Down.— M. Rae K., Tattered Cover Teen Advisory Board member
April 2019 Indie Next List
“A novel in verse that spans the length of time it takes for an elevator to descend, Long Way Down finds Will mourning the death of his brother and grappling with the burden of avenging his murder. Will’s grief permeates every page, from his recollections of everyday childhood memories to his encounters with other figures from his past whose lives were destroyed by gun violence. Jason Reynolds says more with a stanza than most authors can say with a chapter.”
— Lelia Nebeker, One More Page Books, Arlington, VA
Jason Reynolds’s Newbery Honor, Printz Honor, and Coretta Scott King Honor–winning, #1 New York Times bestselling novel Long Way Down is now a gripping, galvanizing graphic novel, with haunting artwork by Danica Novgorodoff.
Will’s older brother, Shawn, has been shot.
Will feels a sadness so great, he can’t explain it. But in his neighborhood, there are THE RULES:
No. 1: Crying.
No matter what.
No. 2: Snitching
No matter what.
No. 3: Revenge
No matter what.
But bullets miss. You can get the wrong guy. And there’s always someone else who knows to follow the rules…
About the Author
Jason Reynolds is a #1 New York Times bestselling author, a Newbery Award Honoree, a Printz Award Honoree, a two-time National Book Award finalist, a Kirkus Award winner, a two-time Walter Dean Myers Award winner, an NAACP Image Award Winner, and the recipient of multiple Coretta Scott King honors. He’s also the 2020–2021 National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature. His many books include Stamped, When I Was the Greatest, The Boy in the Black Suit, All American Boys (cowritten with Brendan Kiely), As Brave as You, For Every One, the Track series (Ghost, Patina, Sunny, and Lu), Look Both Ways, and Long Way Down, which received a Newbery Honor, a Printz Honor, and a Coretta Scott King Honor. He lives in Washington, DC. You can find his ramblings at JasonWritesBooks.com.
Danica Novgorodoff is an artist, writer, graphic designer, and horse wrangler who lives in Kentucky. Her books include A Late Freeze; Slow Storm; Refresh, Refresh (included in The Best American Comics 2011); and The Undertaking of Lily Chen. Her art and writing have been published in Artforum, Esquire, Virginia Quarterly Review, Slate, Orion, Seneca Review, Ecotone Literary Magazine, and many others. She was awarded a 2015 New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship in literature and was named Sarabande Books’ 2016 writer-in-residence. She has been a fellow at the MacDowell Colony, Blue Mountain Center, VCCA, Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts, and Willapa Bay AiR. Visit her online at DanicaNovgorodoff.com.
*"A moving rendition that stands on its own."
— Kirkus, starred review
*"Novgorodoff’s watercolors, which bleed at the edges like pavement stains, match the text in mood and fluency, and by putting faces to characters, they tacitly untangle the web of revenge killings and mistaken identities foundational to the plot."
— BCCB, starred review
*"Reynolds’s words paint pictures of their own in this tragic yet poignant illustrated tale that offers no answers to the seemingly impossible choices some communities face."
— School Library Journal, starred review
*"Far more than just an illustration of the events of the novel, Novgorodoff’s iteration powerfully cultivates the tone and mood of its source material, demonstrating just how effective and artful comics can be."
— Booklist, starred review