Story by, Brenden Fletcher & Karl Kerschl
Art by, Karl Kerschl & Msassyk
Letters by, Aditya Bidikar
The story begins with a poem: “Long dream’t Crown Awakens four, Mark haunted hearts, to Isola’s shore.” This short refrain sets the tone and foreshadows this bare-bones tale. A lonely traveler, a young female, has a tiger as a companion she calls “your majesty.” The pair of travelers run from their most recent home while being followed by a mysterious shadow in search of a promised land the traveler calls “Isola.”
The traveler bears the weight of the responsibility to protect her “majesty” who is vulnerable to hunters and other mysterious enemies. The traveler has a dream, which occurs in the midst of their journey, in which she sees her queen lying dead with arrows in her body. The dream does more than spook her; it serves as a warning that guides her decisions and adds to the felt responsibility to keep the queen safe.
The art is stark, with shades of blues, greens, and greys that reinforce both the isolation of the travelers and their shared desperation. Along the way the pair have an encounter with a herd of wild beasts, a large fallen creature the traveler calls “Hallum”, and a group of hunters. The pair encounter a mysterious visitor who I’m uncertain is a friend or enemy and calls himself “Pring.” The travelers and Pring are attacked by hunters who call her witch before she kills them.
While the mystery surrounding the tiger and the journey are mildly provocative, this story lacks the level of intrigue that would keep me interested. It feels intentional for the story to be stripped down, lonely, it plays off the title – Isola. The creative team of Brenden Fletcher (Motor Crush) and Karl Kerschl (Gotham Academy) my be enough to keep people interested. However, the story and themes of this book are not enough to make me interested in purchasing the book on a monthly basis. I rate this book a pass.