TWO THUMBS UP! WAY UP!
Yes, I know, I usually end a book review with “two thumbs up”, but this book is so good I couldn’t help but jump the gun a bit.
Do you like superheroes? Do you like science fiction? Do you wish there were more lead characters of Color in mainstream comics? Do you wish there were more lead female characters that were well-rounded, and not just used as eye-candy? Well then THIS is the book for you!
This is a big hardcover book, over 170 pages. It’s an original graphic novel, but its conceit is that it’s presented as if it’s a collection of a long ongoing series. It’s meant to be issues #295-#300 of “The Many Adventures of Miranda Mercury”, telling a 6-part storyline titled “Time Runs Out”, along with some bonus material (issue #1 and issue #124). It’s a pretty cool idea. And the thing is, if you didn’t know that was fake, you could easily think this really is the collection of a long series. It’s put together just like most hardcover collections from Marvel and DC Comics, as is better than most of them. I wouldn’t be surprised if some fans picked this up and then went to their local comic shop looking for the first 294 back-issues of this series.
So the premise of this book is that Miranda Mercury is a the latest member of the Mercury family, which includes her Grandfather, parents and siblings, to go into the family business, which is being a “science hero”. This takes place in a big Space Opera-type of galaxy, with multiple alien races co-existing across multiple planets and occasionally there are big threats which the members of the Mercury family work to protect the galaxy from. As this book begins, Miranda has been working with her assistant Jack, a young scientific genius who looks up to her. We learn that Miranda has been poisoned by an alien criminal, and therefor is dying. Miranda seems to have simply accepted this, but she has several goals to accomplish before she dies. Jack, on the other hand, is determined to find some way to save her before it’s too late.
Their first mission is called “The Riddle of The Rebel Ronin”, as Miranda and Jack seek out a cosmic cube which contains and all-powerful samurai genie inside, who can grant any one wish to whomever frees him. Except the genie is nearly impossible to free, as no one has been able to solve the puzzle necessary to do so in over 2,000 years. But doing the impossible is what Miranda does best. And freeing this genie would give Miranda the chance to wish for herself to be cured, right?
Miranda manages to free the genie, and her one wish is for the genie to go back inside the cube and make it even harder for anyone to ever free him again.
Jack is in shock, not understanding why Miranda didn’t use the wish to save herself. But Miranda said that the existence of a being that powerful was just far too dangerous. And if he were ever freed by the wrong person, that person could endanger billions of lives, so it was better to make sure that never happens.
That’s the only spoiler I’m giving, just because it shows you what kind of HERO, Miranda really is, putting others before herself, and sets the tone for the rest of the book.
We see many more of Miranda and Jack’s missions, which takes them to planets made of glass, inhabited by giant ant-monsters, facing time-traveling terrorists, and other intergalactic threats. Do let the death-storyline fool you, there’s plenty of FUN in these adventures, too. Brandon Thomas has done an excellent job writing a story that combines, action, drama, humor, and suspense. And Lee Ferguson’s artwork is a beauty to behold. And the extra stories in the book tell the origin of the Mercury family, and how Miranda first got her start as a science hero @ age 10, and then when she finally struck out on her own as an adult.
If I had an extra thumb I’d give this book THREE THUMBS UP!
Get more info @ MirandaMercury.com