Book review: The Castoffs. Volume1, Mage Against the Machine, by MK Reed, Brian Smith, colorist

Reed, MK. The Castoffs. Volume 1, Mage Against the Machine. (The Castoffs, #1-4). Brian Smith, colorist. Roar, 2017. Unpaged. $12.99. ISBN 9781941302279. Ages 12+. P7Q7.

Charris, Trinh, and Ursa are apprentice mages who have been brought together on an errand to deliver a magical cure through a landscape devastated by a war twenty years before, to a nearby village. Each mage has a different magical gift and a very different personality, so of course they spend a lot of time arguing. Over the course of the story, we learn about the mage vs. machine war that ruined their world, and find that there is still a villain out there to defeat! I found the prologue very confusing- after I finished the rest of the book, I read that part again and still didn’t know how the various characters related to the main characters.

VERDICT: Graphic novel fans who enjoy stories about magic and battles will probably enjoy this book. Hopefully the material in the prologue will be explained in later books in the series.

April 2018 review by Carol Schramm.


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