Book review: Awakening, by Marjorie Liu, illustrated by Sana Takeda

Liu, Marjorie (author.) Awakening. Illustrated by Sana Takeda. (Monstress, Volume 1) Image Comics, 2016. $9.99. ISBN: 978-1632157096. 192p. Gr. 9+.  P8 Q9

This is an alternative history book about a teenager, Maika, who survives a war but loses all her loved ones.  She seeks revenge on her enemies and finds her psychic super powers awakens a monster who she hopes will help her in her cause. It’s a very complicated story, impossible to relate here, and at times it was confusing to follow, but I think that’s pretty typical for some graphic novels/comics.  They want to sell sequels!  There’s lots of violence, brutality, and nudity in this novel, so I would say it should be for more mature high schoolers and up.  I loved the graphics, they are sort of a mixture of art nouveau and steampunk, which fits the time period well.  I also love the fact that the female characters are so strong in this, which isn’t surprising, considering Liu’s other novels.

May 2018 review by NHS student.

[Editor’s note: Winner of the 2017 Hugo Award for Best Graphic Story.]

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