Monstress Vol.1: The Awakening
Set in an alternate matriarchal 1900's Asia, in a richly imagined world of art deco-inflected steam punk, MONSTRESS tells the story of a teenage girl who is struggling to survive the trauma of war, and who shares a mysterious psychic link with a monster of tremendous power, a connection that will transform them both and make them the target of both human and otherworldly powers.
In a quest to find more Steampunk related graphic novels, the love for them all started because of Lady Mechanika, I stumbled across Monstress. Fantastical creatures, magic, and witches all bundled up into a wonderfully gritty artwork in the style mashup between Art Deco and Steampunk.
It’s a somewhat complex story of a war between two classes: that of the Arcanics and humans. The Arcanics are treated like slaves and are experimented on and killed. Their mutated appearances the bane of the humans. As the story unfolds it is known that they are half god and half human. Certainly a mythological aspect going on as well. However, all that backstory could seem a bit confusing at times, but it is such an enthralling read. I loved all the characters and their dynamics, even the evil ones. But it was truly the Arcanics that I really felt for. Some of them were so cute.
Some of the cuteness includes: Talking 3 tailed cats, sword fighting 3 tailed cats, little talking hybrid fox girls, and little history lessons throughout the story that explains things to the reader. Gotta love professor Tam Tam.
Maika, the main character, has that aloofness to her that might make it seem hard to like, but her situation has hardened her to those around her. She fights an inner battle with the “montser” that she is, and it will be interesting where that will lead her eventually. I really enjoyed this complex story and look forward the to next volume.
Do you read Graphic Novels? If, so which ones?