I don’t think I will manage to write longer reviews for either of these, so I have decided to review them together. Both of these comics are fantasy with elements of horror. Monstress is definitely the darker of the two, but if you have read the previous volumes you already know that.
Monstress Vol. 3 Written by Marjorie Liu
Illustrated by Sana Takeda
Synopsis: Maika has spent most of her life learning how to fight, but how will she fare when the only way to save her life…is to make friends?
My rating: ** 2 stars, or maybe 2.5?
I really liked the previous 2 volumes of this series and gave both of them 3 stars. This one was significantly harder to follow than the others, though. The art is excellent as always, but I had a hard time connecting the dots this time. I wish the plot would slow down a bit; in addition to making it easier to follow, that would probably make me more invested in the characters. This is the most recent volume, and I am on the fence about whether I will want to read Volume 4 when it comes out. I still love the alternate Asia fantasy setting, but apart from that I’m a bit frustrated with this one.
House of Whispers (2018-) — single issue
Written by Nalo Hopkinson
Illustrated by Dominike Stanton
Synopsis: An all-new corner has been added to Neil Gaiman’s Sandman Universe!
Welcome to the House of Dahomey, the houseboat of Erzulie Fréda, where the souls of Voodoo followers go when they sleep to beseech the flirtatious and tragic goddess to grant them their hearts’ desires and counsel them on their futures and fortunes. When you arrive, you’ll find a party is in full swing, filled with all kinds of fabulous and fierce folk, while fish fry and music blasts.
From her bayou, Erzulie scries upon the mortal realm and sees four human girls open a mysterious and magical journal filled with whispers and rumors that, if they spread, could cause a pandemic unlike any the Earth has seen, with the power to release Sopona, the loa lord of infectious disease and cousin to Erzulie, who is currently banned from the human plane.
But even the fearsome Erzulie cannot be of assistance when her dream river turns tumultuous, tossing her house from her realm and into another…
My rating: 3 stars
Review: This is the third of the new Sandman Universe comics (published 2018) that I have read. It should probably be read after the others, The Sandman Universe #1 and The Kingdom (Simon Spurrier). It was established in The Sandman Universe #1 that a new House —the House of Whispers— had joined the Houses of Secret and Mystery in the Dreaming.
House of Whispers #1 picks up this thread of the plot and introduces some new characters. Most of the story takes place at the Voodoo party described above, and the rest takes place inside an apartment where three teenage girls attract the attention of a Voodoo spirit. This single issue is very much an introduction to a larger storyline, but it definitely has potential. The first volume has already been collected, so I will put it on my TBR list.