Tuesday, May 9, 2017
Monstress, Vol 1: Awakening by Marjorie M. Liu & Sana Takeda book thoughts
Title: Monstress, Vol 1: Awakening
Author: (Writer) Marjorie M. Liu (Artist) Sana Takeda (Letterer, Designer) Rus Wooton
Published Date: July 19, 2016
Publisher: Image Comics
# of Pages: 202
Read: May 2017
"Set in an alternate matriarchal 1900's Asia, in a richly imagined world of art deco-inflected steam punk, MONSTRESS tells the story of a teenage girl who is struggling to survive the trauma of war, and who shares a mysterious psychic link with a monster of tremendous power, a connection that will transform them both and make them the target of both human and otherworldly powers."
This Volume collects the first 6 issues. It's a dark steampunk fantasy about a girl who's searching for answers as to what happened to her mother. She ends up coming into contact with a powerful evil force that many people are looking for. There's violence,magic and complex political intrigue. Most of the characters are women and there's a big Asian influence on character design and world building.
I really did enjoy it! I'll start with the negatives and end with the positives.
First off, it's rather confusing. It's a graphic novel so there is a short time to introduce you to a big world and a lot of characters, which for me makes me a bit confused. I had trouble following what is going on at times, though it wasn't the worst either. I basically understood it, I think.
There is a lot of unanswered questions or at least I hope there is and I didn't just miss them as I do feel I missed stuff. It's the first volume so I do not expect everything to be answered right away and hope more answers will come in the second and any future volumes. I can see this story having a lot of potential. It is frustrating though when I have no idea why the mask is important (which is a huge part of the story, rather the point of it as many people are after it), no idea what is up with Maika's mom and her background, why the races are at war, what are people's motivations, basically what is happening in general. Yes, I know I said I don't expect all the answers in the first volume but I would like to understand what is going on...at least to some degree.
Info dumps. Every so often you get 1-2 page spreads of cats telling you about the history of the world...information that really seemed too little too late. Information that would have been helpful chapters ago. I did like the information, though not sure info dumps is my preferred way of getting it but the main complaint being it just felt too little too late.
I loved the art style and the attention to details! It is very beautiful and intricate. I could spot little things that really did help it come alive on the page.
I loved hearing the main character's inner monologue. She had feelings I could relate too, for entirely different reasons obviously but I still loved hearing her thoughts. She is strong, even when she may not realize it. She is caring and she is fierce. I loved her! Though I have to admit, Kippa (a fox girl) is my favorite character! Her insight about fear, friendship, loyalty and more. She is so precious and my heart <3.
Girls run this world! And you have talking cats.
I really am interested to see where the story goes. I hope to pick up volume 2 (expected publication July 11, 2017) and then see where to go from there.