Written and Illustrated by Karim Friha
From Magnetic Press
The beginning of this book starts out like a Conan the Barbarian movie, which was a big plus for me. They give a little bit of back story, I’m hearing it in a crusty old Asian sorcerers voice, I liked the artwork…started out great.
Then the story started in modern times (for the story). The style switched over to an almost anime style, minus the spiky haircuts, and all feelings of Conan drifted away.
The story is something that I have seen on a variety of Saturday morning cartoons, or the Mummy franchise, and follows a pretty classic formula. Ancient artifacts, kids, an ancient cult…I was a quarter of the way thru, and felt really old reading it, I felt it was geared more towards a younger crowd.
The only problem with that, is some of it is in cursive, so the younger crowd would need that part translated. But on a whole, the text was very readable, the dialog smooth, and family friendly. (I say this, because it is a translation, and sometimes they are choppy)
The art is not my cup of tea. I am not an anime fan, so it didn’t really speak to me. It wasn’t full bore anime, it fit the story and what I projected as the target audience, so believe me when I say I am probably wrong on this. (reading the history of this book, it has won awards, so I am definitely wrong)
The characters were all pretty cliché, a female lead, her Duckyesque friend, the jerky lawyer, a guy in power taking interest in her…really, he jam packed everything into this book.
The story fit the length. I didn’t feel rushed though there was a lot going on, and if you slow down when you read it, it all makes sense. I have a bunch of reviews to do, so I started out rushing, then realized I needed to slow down, and it got better. Mainly because I didn’t have to reread it.
Overall, 14 year old me would have given this book a 4 out of 5. Old me gives it a 2.5, because I am crotchety and set in my ways. It is a fun, quick read for a TPB, so if you have kids in that age group, then pick it up for them, then make them go play outside.