The Spire

The Spire

Book - 2016
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The Spire is a mountain of metal and stone, a vast city that rises out of the middle of the radioactive desert. Filled with twisting tunnels, grinding elevators, and ancient machinery, it is home to over a million human and non-human residents. Shå, the last of the species known as the Medusi, is responsible for keeping the hodgepodge of forgotten technology and new biology safe as Commander of the City Watch. But when a string of grisly murders are committed just as a new Baroness of the Spire is about to be sworn in, Shå will have to find the killer and bring that individual to justice. With the new Baroness housing a deep hatred of non-humans, Shå will have more than one enemy at her back as a mystery buried in the history of the Spire unravels around her.
Publisher: Los Angeles, CA : Boom! Studios, 2016
ISBN: 9781608869138
160886913X
Characteristics: 1 volume (unpaged) : chiefly color illustrations ; 26 cm
Additional Contributors: Stokely, Jeff 1988-
May, André

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mexicanadiense
Jun 06, 2017

This was a good "adult" comic, so I feel you may see the 3.5 star rating and think "Why waste my time?", but the simple truth is that based on what I've read the past few weeks I have to go: Saga, Vol. 6 > Monstress, Vol. 1: Awakening > The Spire.

Is it a humblebrag of some kind to state that the fact that this comic features a queer protagonist doesn't really affect my opinion of it one way or the other? I know the comics industry has had its well-documented struggles with diversity pretty much throughout its history, but lately there's been so much great work done to course correct that now it just makes me shrug. Not that Shå's sexuality was gratuitous or mere tokenism, there was a very valid storytelling reason she was written this way that I can't get into because SPOILERS.

Anyway, it was an interesting-enough plot with interesting-enough world-building to definitely keep my attention, Hope you enjoy!

forbesrachel May 27, 2017

The Spire fully embraces its oddness, even as the characters in its world can't or won't. Racism and social hierarchy has created great divisions in this post-apocalyptic fantastical land. This is most clearly depicted by the geography itself, with many powerful humans inhabiting the top of a skyline dominating spire, while most non-humans live at its base, or in the wastes surrounding it. Shå, captain of the city watch, is one of these non-humans, a Medusi with tentacles sprouting from her back. However, beyond this, she has little idea of who she is, having forgotten her past, something which her girlfriend pushes her about. Now, to add to her troubles, a series of high profile murders is happening on her watch, and the royals want some answers. In her pursuit Shå must face several shocking truths and make some tough decisions, which makes for some interesting character drama. The Spire has a gritty style, with scratchy detailed line work, and a post-apocalyptic appropriate palette. While it is more dialogue than action heavy, it still is quite a quick and engaging read; the mysteries are a large part of what drives the plot forward. The Spire is a great standalone graphic novel that manages to develop a politically intriguing world, interesting murder investigation, and characters with motive in just over 200 pages.

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