IDW Publishing/44 Flood 2016
Written by Keith Carmack
Illustrated by Vincent Nappi
Lettered & Designed by Jessi Adrignola
It’s hard to stand out in this industry so when you find a book that does it’s hard not to appreciate it and tell the world about it. So here I am telling the world about it. This isn’t like anything else I’m reading or have read story wise that I’m kind of blown away. Add in Vincent’s own unique style of artwork to go along with it and this becomes a rich dark story that captivates and envelopes the reader in the most unexpected of ways.
Honestly the opening had me incredibly creeped out. This dude who talks to the man working at the diner while kind of looking like a cult leader type was more effective thanks to Jessi’s choice in lettering. Aside from the fact that the dialogue was intense and weird and felt like this guy was the devil or a demon who was taking this guy’s late night bored rant to a level where you think something strange and violent is going to go down. Immediately we’re drawn into the story here and are left wondering what the hell is going on. It’s direct, to the point and left very much did he or didn’t he and a strong desire to find out.
Second segment for me was just as thrilling, dark and mysterious and has that definite Hitchcockian way of portraying violence. Much more terrifying to make the reader imagine what happens after showing them just enough to set the stage in their mind. Highly effective and definitely appreciated by myself.
The rest of the story sets up with life in the city is like for one man. Hektor is an idyllic cop whose father was an Agent and told him tales of how the force was once corrupt and how honest cops took it all back. Having been raised on those stories and seeing the reality of life now mimicking the one described, pre-clean-up, well it’s enough to get a man to question his own life choices and morals. Should he cave in and be like the rest or should he be the man he knows he can be?
Questions like those however come with consequences. Like what will happen to your wife and family should you make the wrong decision. Then there’s also what your wife thinks about all of it and which direction she’d like you choose. Nothing is black and white, even the artwork has just the right placing of colour pops. But how does Hektor and his life tie into what we’ve seen previously? A missing girl her family calling the police to investigate brings Hektor and his partner in and unless I miss my guess we already saw her daughter but read the story to see for yourself.
There’s really a whole going on here to like. It’s got the old school (again i’ll say Hitchcock) suspense thriller vibe along with elements of Noir and mystery to it that combine to create this incredibly dark journey through a man’s life in this city. With excellent characterization, story, pacing and plot advancement with some great imagery from page to page this is one that’s worth checking out.