Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Long Walk to Valhalla

This is author Adam Smith's first full length graphic novel and I hope it isn't his last. To have such a powerful voice in your first publication ? It's the type of book you'd expect from someone with more experience under their belt. I'm so excited to see what he does in the future. You're probably wondering what the hell this book is about? Allow me to give a brief summary from the back of the book:

"There are many things that Rory would like to forget about his childhood growing up in rural Arkansas. Sometimes, he'd even like to forget about Joe, his mentally challenged older brother, both his closet friend and biggest problem. But when a young girl named Sylvia shows up, claiming to be a Valkyrie sent by the Norse god Odin to deliver Rory to Valhalla, he will have to face the past he's tried to lock away. "

That doesn't even begin to describe the type of heart wrenching adventure you're about to get into when you pick up this book. Not to mention the beautiful and fantastical artwork bestowed upon the book from the inner eye of Matthew Fox. The illustrations are done in a black, and colored in tones of blue and a gorgeous royal blue highlighting throughout. Blue is actually associated with the heavens and wisdom so it is really the perfect color for this book.

I tried very hard to compare this book to something but couldn't think of a single graphic novel it reminded me of. It's so unique and so thoughtful in how it combines the mythical with reality and manages to make a story of inner turmoil so profound and up-lifting. When I initially picked it up I thought "well this is probably going to be a downer". After all, I know what Valhalla is. Yet for any sad plot points the overall experience reading the book left you with a very positive and warm feeling. Archaia really picked a gem when they signed up for publishing this one.

Long Walk to Valhalla is out tomorrow. I hope you'll check it out! FIVE STARS!