"The Untold Chronicles - Book One: Everdance - A Blood Story" Trade Paperback Review
Written by James "Spez" Ferguson
Published by Brawn Graphix
Written and Illustrated by Geo Brawn IV
2010, 140 Pages
Not all vampires are bad guys. Some are just misunderstood. Geo Brawn IV takes a look at what a blood-sucker might leave behind if he gets staked. What if he had someone he took care of? Brawn's The Untold Chronicles - Book 1: Everdance - A Blood Story explores that very idea. After her husband, Andre, is killed, Kate Bennett is all alone and she's not sure what to do with her life. She's a fellow vampire and Andre killed for her so she doesn't know how to take care of herself. She's basically a child that needs blood to survive. Kate goes out and sloppily murders some losers and then feels bad for it. Fortunately Andre's mother, Lilith, shows up to show her how to do things properly.
Lilith is an intriguing character all on her own. Brawn takes the vampire mythos in an interesting direction, explaining that Lilith was an angel cast down to live amongst the humans. She didn't like the way that Adam (of Adam & Eve) treated her, so she rebelled and was punished. Still alive, Lilith starts a war between heaven and hell and then gets an angel to knock her up. Their offspring is the world's first vampire. Since then Lilith has traveled the world causing terror and massacres.
Kate learns the ropes from Lilith and, despite having some close calls with the cops, manages to satisfy her hunger while cleaning up the streets. Lilith has her own set of problems, though, which Kate gets wrapped up in.
Brawn wrote and drew this book and while the story shows great promise, the art needs a lot of work. The whole thing is in black and white, which is fine, but the pencils are really sloppy and it looks rushed. This feeling is reinforced with several panels that consist of actual photos with the characters drawn over them. This might seem a little cool or artsy, but it falls flat here.
A good letterer would have helped Everdance a great deal as well. I give Brawn a lot of credit in that he self-published this book, but the text here is done in an ever-changing font that is often blurry. If I had to guess, I'd say that the word balloons were created in Photoshop or MSPaint and then re-sized to fit into the panel. When the page is put together this just looks sloppy.
Everdance has some great elements, but the art bogs down the entire book. With some time spent cleaning up the pencils and word balloons, it would be pretty good. Brawn has a talent for cheesecake and it's something that would definitely be a great fit at a publisher like Zenescope. The quality of the book itself is actually better than some of the trades I've seen from Marvel and DC, too. I'd love to see what he can do to expand on his universe with The Untold Chronicles, weaving stories between pieces of history.
You can purchase The Untold Chronicles - Book One: Everdance - A Blood Story from the official website.
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