Delilah Dawson is rapidly becoming one of my favorite authors. The plot of Firefly: The Sting (a graphic novel that is set in the Firefly universe) is complex, and lots of characters “take the lead” in this ensemble story of the women of Firefly. The premise (that Saffron had been hiding on board Serenity, and thus able to cause a full set of hijinx) felt a little beyond what the character (to me) is capable of, but everything after that was true-to-character and strong.
Props to the many artists, colorers, and letterers involved, especially for the interstitial art between chapters. It was impressive and intriguing.
I hope that there are more stories like this coming.
I love graphic novels. I love fantasy stories. I love stories that twist at tropes. I love a good light bubblegum read when I’ve been reading big heavy things about plagues and death.
Ladycastle by Delilah Dawson (writer), Ashley A. Woods (Illustrator), Becca Farrow (Illustrator), Rebecca Nalty (Colorist), and Jim Campbell (Letterer), is the best type of bubblegum read: a feminist-friendly tale of women defeating a curse brought on by cruel men who never gave them a second thought, with references to Hamilton and many other cultural touchpoints.
Delilah Dawson was one of the co-authors of Kill the Farm Boy, which I loved, so when I saw her talking about this book coming out, it went on my birthday list, and my awesome brother supplied it for me. I inhaled the book, finishing it in less than a day, with more than one peal of laughter resulting.
The only criticism I’d provide is that the men were, well, flat… which is both part of the reason why it’s great bubblegum and why it could be just slightly better. (It also wasn’t particularly long a comic run, so not a lot of time to develop the characters you’re not there to read about.) Characterization was great and I hope there’s a sequel.
Kill the Farm Boy is a coming-of-age story. Well, sort of. It’s as satirical of its tropes as Monty Python is of, well, everything. It’s got enough puns to be a Xanth novel but it’s a lot better a story. It’s got a Chosen One who isn’t up to the task, political intrigue, romance, an elder statesman I can actually look up to, and interesting ways to die.
Oh and did I mention the talking goat?
Here’s how good this book was. I finished it, put it down, and preordered No Country for Old Gnomes (the next book in the series) immediately.
Come for the poop jokes, stay for the talking goat.