Graphic Novel Review: Elves. Vol. 1 by Jean-Luc Istin

Elves. Vol. 1 
by Jean-Luc Istin, Kyko Duarte (Illustrations), Nicolas Jarry, Gianluca Maconi (Illustrator)

Goodreads | Amazon | B&N

Source: NetGalley

Synopsis for Part 1:

“The crystal of the Blue elves” by Istin and Duarte
The Blue Elves of Ennlya, a small port town of Nordrenn, have been murdered!

Lanawyn, a Blue Elf, and Turin, her human ally, set out to discover who is responsible. The trail they uncover leads back to a clan of Yrlans—Northern men who hate Elves.

At the same time, Vaalann, a young Blue Elf, undergoes a dangerous test called the Water of the Senses. Her future, as divined by the Mother Prophetess, is closely linked to the Sacred Crystal . . . a powerful artifact that enables the wielder to control the ocean itself!

Could Vaalann be the messiah that the Blue Elves have been waiting generations for?

My Review:

3 of 5 Stars

Artwork

I enjoyed some of the artwork but have to admit it’s a style I didn’t feel completely drawn to. I love fantasy worlds and this was definitely a place I would enjoy exploring through more art. That said, I didn’t really begin to appreciate the landscapes until part two. Overall, I felt like the colors were a bit muddy without much contrast which made it difficult to find something in a scene to focus on.

Characters

I never really connected with any specific characters though I enjoyed may of them. What threw me quite frequently was the dialogue between them as well as they way they seemed to fade into the background in terms of style. In certain instances, it seemed like the language was attempting to emulate a more formal older style while at others more modern words were used. I don’t mind that there was swearing but the way it was used didn’t seem to fit with the rest of the story. Artistically it really came down to color choice. Often the characters were similar in tone or hue to the background. I would have preferred if they stood out more.

Plot

While I had some issues with the dialogue I really liked the story line of both parts in this graphic novel. Rather than being one continuous story, it was two separate events that happened within the same world. I felt immersed in the world and excited to explore more of it. I’m curious to see future chapters, to see if all of it will come together or if it will remain separated.

In summary, I had a few issues with this graphic novel but I do think it’s worth a read through. The fantasy and magical elements reminded me a lot of Tolkien which kept me reading and I’m sure others will enjoy as well.

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