Source: From Black Panel Press in exchange for an honest review. This in no way alters my opinion or review.
Ancient Astronauts by Vincent Pompeii
Publisher: Black Panel Press
Publication Date: August 16, 2017
In the infinite cosmos are scattered millions of galaxies. Lost among them, a world similar to ours develops in its own solar system. On Plaine, a highly developed planet-nation, the opening reveals Onys, a young and daring archer. She emerges from sleep, short of breath, alerted by a dangerous presence lingering around her. An imperceptible but undeniable entity, defying the laws of physics, manifesting itself like a cloud of smoke, almost palpable. A presence whose mysterious nature would soon rock her senses and shake her perceptions of reality.
The sudden arrival of Yulunga, the astonishing shaman, will open the doors to a universe wholly unexpected by the young Onys. A place where the interpretation of what is real is commanded by the subconscious. A place at the center of which, the laws of nature are defied by the power of the mind.
What if, since the beginning of time, there was something else? Maybe, it was the world of Ancient Astronauts.
I received a review copy of this from the publisher with a wonderful email about the artwork throughout being wonderfully hand-painted in watercolor. I found this unique and the sci-fi plot sounded interesting. Since reading through this graphic novel I have learned that it was originally done in French, which may have led to some of the issues I had with it. Don't get me wrong, the art is what saved it, so props for that, but the story fell very short for me. Maybe it was a lost in translation kind of issue or maybe not, I am not sure.
The story was imaginative and interesting to some extent but I felt like the author tried to pack too much in to too -short of a medium. A novel with this much world building and detail would be good, a graphic novel... I think it was too hard to read through the text and not feel like it was slow and dragging. If you are a sci-fi fan it might be easier to read, I don't read it often, so there might be techniques used here that I just don't understand as well.
Some other notes:
It was REALLY hard for me not to call it "Ancient Aliens" ... isn't that a US History Channel show? I don't know, but I kept calling it that.
What on earth was the main character wearing? Are you telling me that in the future women don't just wear pants? But instead just underwear and a split dress/tunic thing over them? I found that very hard to believe and don't think it furthered the plot at all or even enough to be a justified artistic choice.
I tried to like this one, the art brought it up a star in my rating, but I just could not get into the story like I wanted to.