Publisher: Image Comics
Released: September 11th 2018
Issues: Monstress 13-18
Monstress is without a doubt, the prettiest series I’m reading currently. I think I’d read this series even if I didn’t love the plot, because it’s so beautiful, but it just so happens that I love that part too.
Monstress is written by Marjorie M. Liu (Black Widow: The Name of the Rose, The Iron Hunt, Tiger Eye), and the artwork was done by Sana Takeda (Draken/X-23: Collision, The Secret Love of Geeks, Venom: Circle of Four). Marjorie M. Liu not only writers plots for graphic novels, but has her own fantasy series worth checking into. I love that more and more authors have been giving graphic novels a shot. It’s giving me even more to read! Not that I needed to add to my list of TBR books.
Everything seems to be coming to a head in Monstress. Maika hasn’t made much more progress in her goals, and it seems like she just keeps getting thrown up against more and more challenges. I suppose that was to be expected, considering the nature of the plot, characters around her, and frankly Maika herself.
There was a lot of attention spent on character development in this volume. Mostly with the side characters, though Maika got some as well. It seemed like everyone was given a chance to make a choice – a chance to really show their true colors. For good or for worse, as it turns out.
There was a lot going on in this volume, and not all of it was clearly explained. I think that was intentionally done, so I’m not going to complain about it. The actions of gods, especially old gods, are rarely clear after all. Though we did learn quite a bit about the entity inside Maiko, and his (I feel safe calling him a him now) motivations and feeling towards certain characters and events. I don’t know if any of that will end up helping Maika in the long run though. In fact, it’s more or less the root of many of her problems…so…
There are more characters moving in the shadows now, and so far only one has revealed themselves – though it wasn’t intentional…well, not really anyway. I don’t know if Maika has any clue about what’s going on. I imagine she’s largely in the dark about all of it, but honestly I really would like to see her reaction to the mess happening behind the scenes. Hopefully the next issue will so us more of that.
The artwork is so amazingly detailed I have trouble getting over it. The textures look and feel real, even while being deeply stylized. Part of me wishes that Takeda would do more series with this much detail, but the other part understands just how much time this style of artwork would take…and I’d rather not take any time away from Monstress. So I’ll just have to be patient and happy with what I have.
I’m really anxious for the fourth volume. I know it’s too soon to be counting down the days already, but I feel like we’re really starting to get into the plot that Liu wanted to tell. You can see that it’s all been building up to a point, and I think that it’ll all be happening very soon.