Greg Rucka, writer
Nicola Scott, artist
Jodi Wynne, letters
Chiara Arena, colors (assistant)
This issue builds on the story lines from the previous two issues. Rowan continues her pursuit of a relationship with a fellow police officer, Nichole. Lauren arrives in France to find Anne Marie subdued, locked behind bars. She informs Lauren that Stepan stole a book with directions on how to kill a witch. Meanwhile, Stepan is sighted several times throughout the issue following Rowan. Furthermore, Rowan’s partner in the police force, Morgan, meets with investigators who believe Rowan killed a suspect by hanging. Finally, the spiritual forces of evil continue to constrict Rowan’s world as the mistress in White strengthens her grip on Rowan without her knowing it.
Rucka and Scott, through expert storytelling, put the main characters into several double-binds, which intensifies the felt emotion. For example, Morgan believes Rowan told investigators the truth yet also believes that she killed a suspect. In addition, Rowan continues her pursuit of a physical relationship with a human while the non-physical world tightens its grip around her, begging the question, will she continue to ignore the spiritual, and her true destiny? The Mistress in white both strives to win Rowan over and seemingly initiates a plot to kill her.
The art is amazing! Nicole Scott does a lot well. The human body is depicted in realism. However, the highlight for me is a panel near the end that shows Lauran and Anne Marie having a conversation in an ancient castle in France. The panel depicts a living room set in a castle-like home with ancient bricks, the shadows created by two lamps in the background and antique furniture neatly arranged in the foreground. The details and expertise in shading makes this come alive.
Readers must pay close attention to the story to pick up all of the different things that are going on. I re-read issues 13, 14, and read this issue several times before realizing everything that Rucka and Scott are developing. This story is intensifying. The entertainment value elevates as the evil represented in the spiritual realm advances their plot. The art is perfect in its rendition of the visual aesthetic. I highly recommend this story to any fan of sorcery and fantasy. Overall 9.5/10