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Promethea, Book 3 Paperback – August 1, 2003

33 customer reviews
Book 3 of 5 in the Promethea Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

With his realistic approach to superhero comics, Moore prompted a minor revolution in the 1980s. Of late he has returned to the genre with a line of new costumed adventurers. Of them, teenager Sophie Bangs, the latest in an age-old line of embodiments of the mystical heroine Promethea, seems closest to his heart. Standard superhero fare (crime fighting, slugfests, etc.) takes a backseat to philosophical and moral issues here, but the stories most reflect Moore's long obsession with magic, mysticism, and the occult; with the Tarot, the spheres of the Kabbalah, and astrology. In this collection, Sophie follows her recently killed mentor, just-previous Promethea avatar Barbara, into the afterlife, where they visit heaven and hell and meet famous occult figures. In Sophie's absence, however, a temporary Promethea is creating problems on Earth. Artist J. H. Williams' intricate, imaginative illustrations, which veer from surrealism to psychedelia, make it all work. Although her costume suggests Wonder Woman, Promethea may appeal to the normally comics-eschewing fans of the wildly popular Sandman series. Gordon Flagg
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Alan Moore is one of the most respected and admired writers in comics today, with a host industry awards and accolades. His credits include The Ballad of Halo Jones, Watchmen, V For Vendetta and Swamp Thing. He is currently working on his own line of comics, including Tom Strong and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • Series: Promethea (Book 3)
  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: WildStorm (August 1, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 140120094X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401200947
  • Product Dimensions: 6.6 x 0.2 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #119,235 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Robert Razavi on December 29, 2003
Format: Paperback
Alan Moore is perhaps the most groundbreaking and innovative comic book scribe in the history of comics. Sure, the field has provided many groundbreaking and innovative comic book artists (from Windsor McKay to Will Eisner, from Jack Kirby to Frank Miller, from Alex Ross to Steve Ditko, and many many more...), but in my opinion, no other comics writer (emphasis on the term "writer") has brought so much to this often maligned art form. Alan Moore has proven that sequential storytelling can be as interesting, thought provoking, inspiring and imaginative as prose storytelling (and indeed, even more at times, since comics have one advantage over prose alone: imagery).
Alan's best known work is of course "Watchmen", often copied and emulated but still unequaled in depth and richness after more than a decade. However, it must not be forgotten that Alan has provided his avid fan base (and an immense number of casual comic book readers from all walks of life) with many delightful comics works since Watchmen. Of these, Promethea stands apart as a very emotional and personal work from its author.
This series is a vehicle for Alan to explore and expose to the readers many themes presumably dear to him. To be able to do so, he has devised a rather interesting trick for the story, creating a framework in which the primary characters (Promethea and her immediate supporting cast) evolve and convey the message to us readers (at some point, the so called "fourth wall" is even breached, much to the delight of Scott McCloud's fans). This trick consists, in fact, of a gigantic road trip through various realms (that is, places the characters visit during the stories) existing outside of our perceived "real" or physical world.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Elliott Mason on September 16, 2002
Format: Hardcover
This is the second collected volume of the series. It's probably best to start with volume one. :-> That said, this continues the story of the living legend Promethea, as currently embodied in an alternative, technologically-advanced 20th Century. The 1999/2000 New Year's Day celebrations take place in this volume, for those wishing to keep score.
Each issue is becoming more jewellike and perfect, it seems to me (though I haven't gone on to the third compendium yet). One entire issue/chapter in this volume is given over to an exploration of humanity's history through the metaphor of a modified tarot deck, as told by the snakes on Promethea's caduceus, Mike and Mack (Micro and Macro - who speak in rhyming quatrains of iambic pentameter, flawlessly, each keeping his recognizable viewpoint towards either the big picture or the minutiae). Along the bottom of each page is both an anagram of Promethea's name that is pertinent to that page's content, and a serialized joke whose phrases again echo and reinforce the other three threads on each page. Another issue is given to an extended tantric sex scene (nothing is explicitly shown but boobies, though MUCH is implied), with a discussion of the theory and practice of magical symbolism and chakras ... which leads to a priceless last-page joke.
It's not a traditional narrative comic book. It's not even as traditionally-narrative as the first volume. It's ... dreamlike, and dense, and strange, in a way that is entirely appropriate for a work purporting to be about the world of imagination, and how that world interacts with our own through its avatar. It's not everyone's cup of tea, no. But if you like Neil Gaiman, you might well enjoy this too.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on July 28, 2001
Format: Hardcover
When I reviewed the first volume in this series, I described the general idea in the following way: 'Promethea' is an attempt to render the female super hero in an archetypical form. This book has a strong mystical or spiritual theme, with the female lead cast in a pluralistic role: she is both Sophie Bangs, student, and Promethea, imagination personified. Our Promethea is not the first, there is a whole line of Prometheas stretching back to ancient Egypt, and we get to know some of the earlier ones in this book.
This volume collects issues 7 through 12 of the series. If anything, it tops the previous volume.
Alan Moore and JH Williams III are firing on all cylinders here - we get quite a detailed examination of spiritual themes, contrasted and compared to quantum physics; some superheroing; one of the most sensual comics you're likely to see, and a diverse cast of characters.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Gagewyn on January 20, 2005
Format: Paperback
Prior to reading this I had read Book 1 in the Promethea series. I picked up on what was going on here OK, but starting in at this book would not be a good idea. The Background for the series: Basically Promethea is the Goddess myth embodied. She enters the real world (modern day New York but with flying cars and other advanced technology) through Sophie, a college student. She has entered the world through other women at other times. These women are now dead and they lounge around in the after life and watch Sophie-Promethea for entertainment. Sophie-Promethea can enter other worlds. So she can visit the other Prometheas or can travel through the land of myths (the Immateria). Her main job is to maintain order in the real world and keep balance between all these forces that we learn about as they emerge.

The story here involves Sophie-Promethea leaving to go on a journey through the realms of the soul to find Barbara-Promethea (one of the deceased Prometheas), who wandered off in search of her deceased husband sometime during Book 2. Meanwhile 20's Promethea merges with Sophie's roommate to maintain order in the real world while Sophie-Promethea is gone. As you would expect from the series there is a lot of numerology and occult stuff here. Most of this happens in the Sophie-Promethea plot-line which is all serious. The real world plot line has mostly action, with 20's Promethea fighting in style, and comic relief since 20's Promethea and Sophie's roommate don't get along so well but are sharing a body. These two plots parallel one another especially at the conclusion.

The graphics: The artistic style is the normal comic booky style done well. However the layouts are spectacular. Almost any spread of two pages hangs together as one coherent whole.
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