Image Description: the book-cover of the graphic-novel Monstress – Volume Four: The Chosen. In the background, there is the three eyes and face of an “Ancient” creature. In the foreground, from left to right, Maika is standing to the left of a person in a chair. In the centre is a man with shoulder-length white hair, an open shirt, and wearing a military uniform. To the right of the man sitting in the chair is Zim
Title: Monstress, Volume Four: The Chosen (Book #4 of The Monstress Series)
Author and Artist: Majorie Liu (author) and Sana Takeda (artist)
Majorie Liu – Goodreads and Twitter
Sana Takeda – Goodreads
Publisher: Image Comics Inc.
Format and Price: Amazon Kindle Format at $8.99
Rating: 5 out of 5
About The Author:
Marjorie Liu is an attorney and NYT Bestselling author of over seventeen novels. Her comic book work includes X-23, Black Widow, Dark Wolverine, and Astonishing X-Men, for which she was nominated for a GLAAD Media Award for outstanding media images of the LGBTQIA+ community. She teaches a course on comic book writing at MIT and lives in Cambridge, MA.
About The Artist:
Sana Takeda is an illustrator and comic book artist who was born in Niigata and now resides in Tokyo, Japan. At the age of twenty, she started out as a 3D CGI designer for SEGA and became a freelance artist when she was twenty-five. She is still an artist, and has worked on such titles such as X-23 and Ms. Marvel for Marvel Comics, and is an illustrator for trading card games in Japan.
About The Book:
Maika and Corvin make their way through a warped and lethal land in search of Kippa, who is faced with her own terrible monsters. But when Maika comes face-to-face with a stranger from her deep past, startling truths are uncovered, and at the centre of it all lurks a dangerous conspiracy that threatens the Known World. Maika is finally close to getting all the answers she ever wanted, but at what price? With war on the horizon, a war no one wants to stop, whose side will Maika choose? Collects MONSTRESS #19-24.
~Character Development – Kippa: In this volume, the reader finds out more about Kippa’s backstory, I haven’t figured out what has happened to Kippa’s parents (I suspect they’re most likely dead), but we get to see them in this volume.
It turns out Maika isn’t the only one who has special abilities. Apparently Arcane children go through a transformative phase, however, I am not entirely sure what that involves. I’m not sure what the transformative phase plus these special abilities will lead to but I’m hoping to find out.
~Star Wars Moment: This is was going to happen at some point, however, in this volume, the reader finds out the identity of Maika’s father. While we only get to see a little bit of Maika’s father, I can see why Moriko was drawn to a man like him, he has the same flair for politics and is just as ruthless as Moriko was.
One of the major plot points is that the Doctor (Maika’s father) has been moving a lot of chess pieces in the background and it’s wonderfully satisfying to see some form of explanation/conflict resolution. The creators haven’t revealed all their secrets, such as how the Doctor has managed to learn how to subdue Zim (in a manner of speaking), so I am definitely looking forward to more issues with the Doctor.
~Excellent World Building: In this volume, the reader is introduced to a wide collection of movers and shakers of the various Arcanic military forces, the various character who are introduced are fascinating, and I hope these characters show up again in later volumes.
The vast majority of these characters are focused on the short term (but immediate) threat of War between the Arcane and the Humans. Maika will find it difficult to persuade people to take her long term (but serious) problem of the Elder Gods attempting to break through to this dimension once more
All in all, a fascinating volume with lots of plot and character development, I am super hyped for the next volume in the series.