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Sevara, No. 1 Paperback – March 12, 2015
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Mr. Wampler is an imaginative story-teller. I absolutely loved the prequel novel that gives more background to Sevara and when Damian approached me to review the GN, I wholeheartedly agreed.
When the novel arrived, I was first and foremost blown away by the art. It is beautifully done and brought to life Sevara's character and her powers.
Once I started reading it, I struggled for a while to understand what exactly was going on, but well into chapter two, I caught on, but still had one issue. For me, there wasn't any significant break when the story jumped from past to present. In the first chapter, the story jumps back to a scene in the Sevara: Dawn of Hope novel. The colors were dulled in that panel compared to the other and I thought it brilliant that they would differentiate the past in such a way, but later in the story they jumped back again to a storyline in Sevara: Dawn of Hope without any noticeable change. If I hadn't read the novel first, I don't think I would have understood the reference.
Other than that, the story in this GN is on point and I just love how Mr. Wampler's mind works. The cultural parallels are brilliant and the religious aspects are thought-inducing.
I would absolutely recommend this graphic novel, but I would highly suggest reading Sevara: Dawn of Hope first. (Oh and definitely check out the extras in the back - that timeline really brought the story into perspective)
That being said, I think Mr. Wampler is a very creative story-teller and I thoroughly enjoyed this work of fiction. As with a lot of fantasy stories, it could get quite confusing, but once I pushed through I found myself eager to see where it goes. This story has an interlaced plot structure that kind of grips you eventually.
Severa was an orphan and lived at an orphanage, but once she grew up and left, she was killed. The goddess Alta, saved Severa and gave her new immortal life and super powers.
This story is set in the future, and as it progresses, the timeline jumps forward and backwards, revealing what happened to humanity and what Sevara did to save it by some amazing looking battles. After the world was saved, the immortals go into a long sleep, and when Sevara awakens she finds that darkness and fear have come back into the world by evil Mitan, a new god.
I loved this story, yet I found the exposition lacking. The time jumps, from the past to the future to the farther past were confusing. Honestly, I'm not slow or anything, but I had to read the story three times before I could review it, and it could easily have been avoided with a little more hand holding by the overall story outline. I hadn't read the novel first and I’m sure many of my questions will be answered in the novel which I’m definitely going to read. There was a bonus material section which really helped me and gave me a much needed timeline of events and also an insight into the creation of the series.
I've noticed that in sci-fi or fantasy comic, the writer is usually throws a garbage pile of references and new vocabulary at you to help learn of its universe. This luckily, doesn't do that. It gives you the space to grasp what is going on. I also really like the way that the gods can actually be harmed instead of invincible. The dialogue exchanges are more solid and coherent as they move down the page and I know I already mentioned it, but I have to say once again, the art is slick and dark and fits the storyline perfectly.
There’s something incredible, I believe, in finding art that stands out from the page without any barriers. Each page featured colorful, detailed, mini-masterpieces.
Firstly, let me talk about how absolutely beautiful the art is. It's magnificent. I fell in love the second I opened the book. (Although I'll never understand why women have to be so naked in comics)
I wish the cover had been different because the cover doesn't do this justice. If I had seen this somewhere I wouldn't have picked this up. (I was sent the book to read)
Now to the story.
It's a little difficult to get through the first chapter but please do. Because it gets really GOOD. I found it a complex woven story that kind of grips you from the second chapter onwards. You find yourself horrified, thrilled, excited and eager to see where it goes.
I must say the bonus section really helped me, a comic book newbie, see how much work goes into the creation process and made me appreciate it more. And the last section of writing? Wow. That's amazing. I want to know what happens after she says what she says. So exciting. Can't wait for the next instalment.