Comic Review Starmaker: Leviathan – Book One

Trying to sum up Starmaker: Leviathan, the  first of a four book series from Dare Comics which reunites the team of writer Adam Hamdy and artist Dave Golding, is a tough one but I’ll give it a try.

Starmaker: Leviathan is part espionage thriller, part intriguing sci-fi mystery, part supernatural adventure all tied together with a centuries spanning global conspiracy and I loved every page.

One the intriguing concepts the pulled me into the story is that Hamdy does not like to lead his readers through the story by the hand.  In fact the main character is not named until over half way into the book. It’s a bold move but for my money it’s works. The opening scenes  really set the tone of an epic tale before plunging me into a great aerial action sequence. It was only when I took a breath did I realise that I didn’t know who this character was, let along if he was good or evil and yet I was desperate to find what was  driving him and why he was termed as ‘The most wanted man in the world’ .

The story  is fast past paced and there is a real sense of scale in terms of making me believe that this is all taking place on global stage, where the stakes are about as high as they can get. There are some times where the story does skate around the edge of the cliche abyss but thankfully Hamdy manages to avoid falling into the trap.

Having read and loved Hamdy and Golding’s previous collaboration with  The Hunter I was already a fan of their work so it was all the more rewarding to see a clear evolution in both the storytelling and art. You can see the passion these guys have for their story in every panel. Golding’s art is definitely a step up from Hunter (in which the art was already at a high standard) and he handles the action scenes with confidence and flair. As I’ve previously mentioned this is a globe-trotting tale and this point is rammed home by Golding’s lush and colourful portrayal of the architectural landmarks, artefacts and landscapes from the countries that are visited in the story.

By the end of book one some of the questions raised along the way are answered but  many more spring up in their place along with an almighty cliffhanger.

One of the criticisms I had about the Hunter series was that given the time between books it would have been a nice addition to have a story so far style intro page for those people who don’t want to re-read the previous book. I hope this is something we may see used in Book two of Starmaker, which is due out in December.

Every creative talent wants to improve on what they have done before and I think Hamdy and Golding have done that with Starmaker. This is a great opening salvo of what promises to be a thrilling science fiction adventure.

Check out Dare Comics for more info. The guys will be launching the comic at the San Dieago Comic Con booth 5535.

GS Reviewer: Nuge

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