In a land simply called “The Waste,” a brother and sister (Koken and Caszy) scavenge the desert for remnants of a civilization long gone. Pools of what they call “glow” (a blue, water-like substance that also floats and glows) appear to gather at spots where fragments of this civilization once stood. It is dangerous, but exactly what it can do has yet to be revealed; however, by the way they treat “glow,” I suspect it has radioactive components along with magical ones. The power of runes also plays a major part in not only their hunt, but in how their weapons are controlled.
Narrowly escaping an attack of rats who mutated from normal-sized vermin into large, violent creatures, Koken and Caszy return home to Shoddat with little to show for their efforts. Their guardian, Kelbourne, is not impressed with their haul, but Koken is intrigued with the small cube laced with what looks like “glow,” but it has no runes which is unusual. Their day becomes more interesting when the “Witch of Aziz” entertains the entire town when she takes to a public stage and creates runes out of thin air. Caszy can only guess at what other surprises await them.
In a large format (8” x 11”), this book is impressive not only in storytelling, but art, coloring, and lettering, as well. The team has even taken the time to create a new language for the book. A map of Shoddat, along with pages from Koken’s journal, are part of the extras. As you can tell, I am a fan of Ray Chou and Vincent Ferriero and have been since they started publishing Skies of Fire. Their emphasis on quality art, story, and production easily matches anything you can get from Image or Archaia/BOOM! Studios. I look forward to seeing where this new series takes us.