I’m not even sure I can give this stars because it defies a starred rating system. What I do know: it’s post-apocalyptic but completely and absolutely removed from the world we know. The world is strange and disorienting and unfamiliar, and we spend the entirety of this volume knowing as much as John Prophet, who wakes up at the beginning of the novel and follows a voice or urge within himself on a journey through this desolate and shit-filled landscape (literally). Everything he sees for the first time, we see for the first time as well. At least once per chapter, I found myself audibly saying, “WHAT?” or “What the hell is THAT?” or “What the hell is going ON?” I’m still not sure I know 100% of what’s happening here, but I’m okay with that.
What I love about this as well is the full realization of this wholly strange and new world. The world feels ancient and futuristic at the same time, and I sense that the author has completely imagined the history of and a future for this universe. In my version of the book, there are artist sketches at the back of some of the different creatures and structures that appear throughout the book, and some have parts that are labeled. I love to observe artistic process, and it looks like some of these completely unfamiliar structures and creatures are comprised of very familiar pieces. I appreciate that the artist took such familiar things (such as Pomeranians) and transformed them into unrecognizable creations of this other world.
Even if the post-apocalypse/graphic novels/sci-fi/completely bizarre isn’t for you, at least give this one a shot. It’s weird, but I kind of love it.