This is a post-apocalyptic story. Darkness is everywhere and has been that way for ten years. In that ten years, Val Riggs has seen nearly everyone she knows become ‘infected’ and changed shapes into hideous, grotesque creatures. Val now works as a ‘ferryman’ – driving an eighteen-wheeler big rig, transporting people and goods through the eternal night. It’s a dangerous job as there are those who see transporters as opportunities for fresh flesh and merchandise.
There must be something special about the current passenger load as Val is now up against one of the most dangerous men she’s ever faced. A man all in black who seems every bit as capable as she is in navigating the darkness. But Val is racing the clock as well as the man in black as someone she loves is in the early days of the infection and she’s learned that there’s a Sanctuary that may be able to help … if she can get there.
This book is very, very … average.
The first chapter (or issue as this is a collection of comic book issues) really caught my attention. I was hooked and really interested to read on. Unfortunately it leveled off at this point. Writer Scott Snyder works to build on the story, giving us the real episodic experience where each chapter ends with a new revelation, urging us to read on.
But while the chapter ends with a bit of a cliff-hanger, the story never really builds. There’s some action and excitement and the man in black poses some serious threat, but the story never really grabs.
The characters are decent, stock characters that you might find in any post-apocalyptic story, but again, they don’t stand out as unique or fascinating in any special way.
Ironically, I’d also read Geiger, Vol 1 about the same time that I read this and with that one I found character growth and multiple storylines that had me anxious to follow each of them and to see how they would overlap. Here we’re focused primarily on the one story, with a little detour to the man in black, and the characters may grow anxious, but there isn’t much character growth.
The art was fine, but again, very average.
Looking for a good book? There’s nothing wrong with Nocterra, Vol. 1, a graphic novel by Scott Snyder and Tony S Daniel, it just doesn’t rise above the pool of post-apocalyptic stories on the bookshelves.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Edelweiss, in exchange for an honest review.
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Nocterra, Vol. 1
author: Scott Snyder
artist: Tony S. Daniel
publisher: Image Comics
paperback, 168 pages