If Christie Shinn’s name sounds familiar to you, no doubt you are recalling my brief review last month of the bloody, demented Caligula Imperatore Insanum, for which she was the illustrator. Today I am pleased to be taking a look at another one of her offerings, Sepulchre Volume 1. I won’t call this a review, per se, because I don’t want to give away the story or any plot points!
Gorgeously stark and atmospheric, a violent tale of deliberate betrayal, personal tragedy , and vengeance, Sepulchre takes place “In a world of swords, bullets and blood” where our main character, Lady Jaye Hawke, is “betrayed by the one she loved the most, and seeks to avenge that treachery.”
Some time back I had the opportunity and distinct pleasure to view the first few pages and what I saw piqued my interest tremendously–when I tell you it was both a gut punch that rendered me breathless and left an unforgettable vision seared into my retinas, I am not exaggerating. Without a doubt it left me trembling, intrigued and yearning for the rest of the story. The beginning of this tale grips you instantaneously, and I’ll say no more than that.
Lady Jaye Hawke has a story to tell, that we know for certain. However due to tragic and an as-of-yet not entirely explained backstory and circumstances, she is left without a voice to do so. Instead, her narrative unfolds through her actions and expressions. Her emotions, fraught with sorrow and fury, hysteria and despair, are passionately illustrated by Shinn in dramatic blacks, whites, and red, and convey to the reader more than mere words ever could.
This is going to be a tale of revenge, we can see that’s where this is heading, and I am all about enthusiastically meting out punishment to monsters who betray us… but I am hoping there are moments of redemption, as well. It is rare that I fall so completely in love with a character that I know so little about, but I’ve glimpsed enough to see that Lady Jaye Hawke is empathetic and has kindness in her heart, so I want to see this play out in a way that doesn’t leave her brutish or monstrous, herself.
If you are interested in picking up Sepulchre for yourself, please visit Christie over at HoraTora Studios for a copy, and be certain to take a look at her projects while you are there. In the meantime you can to peek in on her over on twitter or Instagram to see what else she is up to!