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The Alchemist of Souls (Night's Masque, #1)
Anne Lyle
How to Train Your Dragon
Cressida Cowell
Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers
Mary Roach
Blacksad - Juan Díaz Canales, Juanjo Guarnido This review has been edited for Goodreads, but you an find the full review here.I picked this comic up after seeing a sample of some of it's art floating around Tumblr (link NSFW). The artist previously worked for Disney and has some amazing skills, which show in his ridiculously detailed backgrounds and the way he humanises his characters while keeping their animal designs.Art where illustrated animals act like humans has kind of a bad rap around the internet. It gets given the 'furry' label a lot, referring to a subculture who like humanised/anthromorphized animal art, and since a lot of furry art is smut the comics get dismissed as smut too.That's no use at all, because while some comics with humanised animals unfortunately go this route the best ones don't. To name a few: Lackadaisy (a gorgeous free-to-read online comic dealing with the dangerous life of rumrunners in Prohibition-era America, using anthro cats), Maus (the story of a Holocaust survivor, using mice) and of course Blacksad.This collection contains three volumes of the comic, making three separate stories. It starts out with that old noir cliche 'the beautiful woman I loved is mysteriously dead' which felt like I was re-reading Sin City, but it was a great opportunity to see hardboiled detective John Blacksad' struggling to deal with loss. From there the writer/illustrator team take on bolder, braver territory, and it works fantastically. Second volume Arctic Nation takes on racism and inter-racial violence, and seeing animals act like racist dirtbags to other animals somehow reinforces how horrible this is when done by humans. Third volume Red Soul takes things an even further step up, bringing in communism and nuclear power struggles.With flawless, amazingly detailed and expressive art and tactful, powerful storytelling, this collection is a gem amongst European comics. Highly recommended to all fans of comics like Sin City, Lackadaisy or Maus, or people who just want to look at some brilliant art.