Story By: Emma Ríos
Art By: Hwei Lim
Review by: Kelsey Hlavaty
Mirror #1 tells the story of a civilization and its leader who have an intense fascination with anthropomorphism. Emma Rios and Hwei Lim take readers into the magical lives of the Irzah Colony following Ivan, a mage, his talking dog, Sena, and Zun, a talking rat.
The first issue in the series is just a glimpse into, what seems like, a carefully woven world with many, many mysteries to unravel. Essentially, Ivan is used by the Irzah Colony (specifically by its appeared leader, Kazbek) to create hybrid animal-human creatures. There seems to be four somewhat successful experiments other than Sena: a bull guardian named Aldebaran, a dying human-bear named Lesnik, an eccentric talking cat named Phinx and a rat-boy servant named Zun. As the Colony appears to be unraveling at its seams, Ivan places a fated journey on the young Zun.
Rios creates a world that is completely unknown to its readers. The characters, although yet to be completely developed, still tell their place in the world. I found myself rooting for given characters without even understanding the whole story. Rios pulls at reader’s emotions with subtle backstory into Ivan and Sena’s past that is sure to build into larger plot points and character development.
Most of the story is told without narration and readers must look at the beautiful artwork in order to further understand elements of the story. Throughout this issue, Lim’s work is stunning. The world is drawn with loose lines and faded pastel water-colors which further entrance readers into the mysteries that lay within the pages. Even with this simplistic style of art, we are still able to grasp the emotions felt by each character. As well, her style compliments the fantastical elements of Rios’ narrative.
PLEASE BUY THIS BOOK! This issue is full of mysteries which will grip you until the end. The world created by Rios is engaging and I found myself truly invested in the characters. As mentioned, Lim’s art is ABSOLUTELY STUNNING! The plot can be a bit confusing at times especially since readers are unfamiliar with this world, but I only see it getting better from here. Mirror is a wonderful reading experience that I recommend to all!