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Brian K. Vaughan – Saga, Vol. 1

May 29, 2013

36. Saga, Vol. 1 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples (2012)
Saga, Volume 1

Length: 160 pages
Genre: Fantasy/Sci-Fi, Graphic Novel

Started/Finished: 02 May 2013

Where did it come from? The library.
Why do I have it? It came highly recommended by my friend who is my primary source for comics recommendations.

Two traitors and their
baby, on the run through a
world of endless war.

Summary: For as long as anyone can remember, there’s been war between the technologically advanced people of Landfall, and the magic-wielding people of their moon, war that has since spread out to encompass their entire planetary system. But there are two soldiers that are fighting back – Alana (a Landfallian) smuggled the Moony Marko out of the prison they were guarding, and the book starts with them on the lam on a planet named Cleave, in the middle of the birth of their first child. Their unusual family is being hunted by operatives from both sides, including some of the deadliest bounty hunters the galaxy has to offer. All they want is to find a way off Cleave, and find a place where they can live in peace, but accomplishing those things will be difficult in a galaxy that views them as traitors and their daughter as a miscegenated abomination.

Review: Oh, this one was good. This is exactly the kind of graphic novel I shouldn’t read, because it is funny, and in a cool world, and with interesting characters and a palpable sense of danger and really appealing artwork… and because this is only the first volume, which means I’m going to have to wait! Argh!

I think one of the things that appealed to me from the very first pages of the book was its similarity to Laini Taylor’s Daughter of Smoke and Bone books. I mean, two peoples locked in a seemingly eternal war, with two soldiers from opposite sides falling in love with the enemy… it’s just in this case, the girl’s the one with the wings, and the guy’s the one with the horns. But this series is more adult, and has a much more twisted sense of humor – I mean, the first line of dialogue is “Am I shitting?” But Alana and Marko are extremely interesting characters – good people, but with their fair share of flaws and bad decisions – and their relationship is interesting to watch develop. And I think Vaughan did a nice job of balancing the main story with the subplots, and providing enough details about the secondary storylines to keep me from feeling lost without distracting too much focus from the main action. The whole thing feels wonderfully epic and imaginative while still being relatable, and I can’t wait to read more. (But I will have to wait. Argh, self, why do you keep starting awesome series before they’re complete?) 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Recommendation: Not – repeat, NOT – for the kiddos. There’s swearing and violence and some graphic sex. But for grown-ups, it’s got a lot of elements that I think would make it appealing to fans of sci-fi/fantasy. (In particular, I’m getting a Whedon-esque vibe from it, although I can’t put my finger on exactly why.)

This Review on LibraryThing | This Book on LibraryThing | This Book on Amazon

Other Reviews: 1330v, Bart’s Bookshelf, Beth Fish Reads, and more at the Book Blogs Search Engine.
Have you reviewed this book? Leave a comment with the link and I’ll add it in.

First Line: This is how an idea becomes real.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. May 29, 2013 11:03 am

    You know, you can buy the individual volumes of Saga on Comixology. :-) Maybe I should read Laini Taylor’s series.

    • May 31, 2013 10:48 am

      Vasilly – I don’t know why I’m so resistant to buying/reading individual comics issues. Maybe because I’ve got a not-awesome memory, so I need an entire plot arc all at once? Or maybe because if I read the trades, I can count them towards my yearly book total. :)

      And I vote yes to people reading Laini Taylor’s books! (Although the third one is not out yet, so if you are like me, you may want to wait for next spring to start?)

  2. June 1, 2013 12:26 pm

    I’m enjoying this a lot too, and like you, I’m sad to have to wait for the volumes to come out. I can’t support a single issue comic book habit, partly because it’s expensive but mostly because I hate having single-issue comics lying around. What can I do with them? They’re unwieldy to read and difficult to store, and they don’t look nice on my shelves.

    Laini Taylor is a comparison I would never have thought of but I can see it! More explicit though, definitely. I was reading it on the subway and had to stop when the TV-head people were having sex, because I felt too weird when the guy sitting next to me looked over my shoulder. :p

    • June 9, 2013 11:17 pm

      I hadn’t even factored in the storage issue, but that’s totally true as well. More reasons to wait for the trades!

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