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‘Goldie Vance: Larceny in La La Land’ (review)

Written by Jackie Ball
Art by Mollie Rose
Published by BOOM! Box


Goldie’s back!

Some of you may remember that I absolutely fell in love with Goldie Vance in her first book and that didn’t change in her next ones. I hadn’t seen one in a while when this one, Larceny in LaLa Land, came along.

As with the last couple Goldie books, this one does not have the original creators but, also as with those other books, both the writing and art style are similar enough that it might be hard to tell unless you look.

With this one, though, our intrepid teenage detective is taken out of her element—the Florida hotel her father manages—and dropped on the mean streets of Los Angeles where, being the pint-sized Mrs. Fletcher that she is, she almost immediately finds a mystery.

Her friends and her mother go along with her but they stay mostly in the background as Goldie and her new mentor, a detective named Avery, takes a lead role alongside Goldie’s former nemesis, Sugar Maple.

It’s never explicitly stated when the story takes place but the typewriter, cars, box camera, and other items still seem to have it set in the early 1960s in spite of some of the fashions and the anachronistic use of “Ms.” Also, some of the characters had been grown-up stars in silent films which, today, would make them well over 100 years old.

Avery is a great new character, given a unique look and a fairly detailed background. She and Goldie hit it off quickly as she sees a lot of her own young self in Goldie.

The mystery itself is a good one, too, with enough clues to keep one interested without bogging the story down. The important thing here, as in all the Goldie Vance stories, is character and, as always, the protagonists here are all genuinely interesting and surprisingly nuanced for an all ages graphic novel.

They’re still promising a Goldie Vance movie. I hope the current crisis ends at some point so we get a chance to see it. If a live action Goldie has half the charm of her graphic novel counterpart, it should be great fun!

Booksteve recommends.


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