Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Quick GN Reviews

2 Sisters: A Super-Spy Graphic Novel
by Matt Kindt
It seems unlikely that such a large tome (334 pages!) cold somehow fly under my radar, but 2 Sisters went unnoticed by me until I saw it on the shelf at the library. What I found was an excellent work of WWII-era spy fiction. Kindt tells the story of Elle, an young woman from the English countryside who by circunstance finds herself spying against the axis powers in the midst of the war. Through flashbacks, we get a look at Elle's upbringing, as well as brief glimpses into the backgrounds of other people she meets, and it all ties in somehow with ancient Greece and 19th-century pirates (though I won't ruin the story by telling you how). It's a taut thriller, and Kindt pulls out some nifty graphical storytelling techniques as well to visualize the hidden and unseen world of spycraft. He also shows a mastery of pacing, moving the reader along at just the right pace, pausing for flashbacks that can be either slow and melancholy or breif clips depending on the mood. If you want a glimpse at what the future of mainstream comics could be, look not to the latest super-hero mega-crossover, but instead pick up a copy of 2 Sisters.
Rating: 4 (of 5)

by Antony Johnston & Ross Campbell
Emily Spook is gaining attention in the indy art world for her inspired yet disturbing paintings. Trouble is she only gets inspired when she's being possessed by ghosts. Her latest passenger is Simon, a recently deceased member of a secret mystical cult, and he wants the embodied Emily to help him make contact with his former mystic friends. You can pretty much guess where the plot is going to go and there are few surprises, but the characterizations are interesting and it's all wrapped up in some very nice moody art by Campbell, who shows quite a flair for inky gothic imagery and moves the story along with a palatte of well-placed blacks. Definitley worth a read if you're in the mood for a modern-day gothic mystery.
Rating: 3 (of 5)

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