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Rasl Volume 1: The Drift Paperback – January 20, 2009
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From Publishers Weekly
The debut volume of Bone creator Smiths new series is distinctly not for kids, but its gripping images and swift pacing are as impressive as anything hes done. In its first two chapters we meet Rasl, an art thief whos mixed up in some very weird circumstances: to make his getaways, he passes (painfully) through a sort of other-dimensional warp called the Drift, and sometimes he doesnt end up on the right version of Earth. Hes also got a mysterious gunman following him, a mysterious tattoo on his arm and a prostitute girlfriend with a mysterious necklace that displays a symbol of emergence. More even than Bone, Rasl is built around a few indelible images, like the agonized appearance of Rasl emerging from the Drift and the sinister grin of the strange-faced man whos following him; its a pretty minimal story so far (the book was reviewed from an incomplete galley), and Smith clearly knows more about the world hes building than he lets on. Still, his scrubby, rough-edged brushwork (showcased nicely by the books oversized format) gets across the storys foreboding, quiet moments as well as its chaotic chase scenes, and his knack for character design is always a treat. (Dec.)
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About the Author
A co-founder of the 90’s Self-Publishing Movement, and an early adopter of the graphic novel format, Jeff Smith is best known as the writer and artist of BONE, an award winning adventure about three cartoon cousins lost in a world of myth and ancient mysteries. In 2008, Smith was the subject of a documentary called The Cartoonist: Jeff Smith, BONE, and the Changing Face of Comics.
Besides BONE and RASL, his other books include Shazam: The Monster Society of Evil, and Little Mouse Gets Ready!
Top customer reviews
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I picked up the individual black and white comics while the series was being published.
However, the complete collection is in color which adds a nice "POP" to the story, you really get that sense of the Arizona Desert.
The binding is very nice and so is the dust jacket. Looks like a real nice fun book. Many guest thumb through it on my coffee table.
p.s. this is a total departure from Bone...
This is adult material of mature work. Enjoy
Chinatown's greatest asset was always its complex, but easily understandable script. It unfolds like a set of stacking Russian dolls, as each new layer of narrative opens to reveal another. When you finally get to the base and there are no more dolls to open, you realize that the film is not only about that doll, which the narrative has led you to, but also about something greater, which turns out to be the thematic center of the work. In Chinatown, this is a swirl of power and water, incest, blackmail, murder and corruption. In RASL, it is a mix of Nikolai Tesla, Native American myths, art heists, the movie Frankenstein, murder and corruption. RASL, like Chinatown, introduces several disparate plot points, that at first seem to make little sense, but as you get further and further into the story, it becomes clear that all the pieces are essential to reassemble the stacking dolls.
Chinatown's script is complemented by keen direction and well-crafted cinematography. Jeff Smith's art serves the same function. As a cartoonist, Smith has one of the strongest lines. His figures and backgrounds are rendered simply, but they possess a certain weight that makes them stand out on the page. The result is uncluttered elegance that lends itself to smooth transitions, from panel to panel and page to page. This is enhanced by the full color that has been created for this edition, which like the bright sunshine of Los Angeles in Chinatown, makes the shadows much longer and darker.
The end of Chinatown is filled with despair. RASL is slightly more positive, but equally bleak. At the end of Chinatown, you marvel at the magnificent journey that has led you to such a sad, but perfect ending. The same thing happens at the end of RASL. The end is as satisfying as the story that gets you there and because of its superior craftsmanship; there is no room for criticism.
Most recent customer reviews
Like many of you, I'm a huge fan of the Bone series. After reading some reviews, I knew that this book would be nothing like Bone and...Read more