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Thursday, September 28, 2017

Light (Graphic Novel) (Fantasy)

By Rob Cham

Publisher: Lion Forge (October 11, 2016)

Hardcover 108 pages

Finished 9/26/2017

Amazon Listing

    A short and sweet graphic novel about a hero who descends from the light to the land of black, finds a companion, and quests for five glowing gems in the realm beneath. It is one of those rare graphic novel which are completely silent, apart from a few sound effects, “yoink” and so forth, no words are used.

    The graphics in this case are all the more important. Each page is one complete panel, creating a mosaic effect. The light represents the upper world and our hero is clad as such. The upper world has almost too much light. Scenes of it are depicted in purely black and white. It isn’t until we descend into the darkness that we get variations of color against a black backdrop.
    The use color in the underworld are what makes the book stand out. Beautiful explosions of color against the dark. The faint outlines of rocks in purple melding into indigo, then orange and red, defining how close to a light source the object it. Plus the wide variety of bizarre and interesting monsters.
    As to what happens. The gems are reunited into a large pearl or opal, rendered in white. That actions seems to have fundamentally changed the nature of the dwellers in dark, or at least, their perception of our hero. Former enemies become friends, vicious monsters are docile or easily cowed. The orb then is brought to the surface and restores color to the world above. There is an excellent scene of it rippling across the planet’s surface.
    The silent graphic novel is a rare thing, but the first of them dates back to the origins of comics as a medium. In fact the original wood block carving novels of Franz Masereel and Lynd Ward date back to the 1910s and 20s, well before the the comic medium exploded across America. While these stories are more humanistic, rather than the outlandish exploits of Superman, they are no less explosive and impactful. Reading this book makes me want to go back to those old masters and give them another gaze.

           For more readings, try books by Rex Hurst. 


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