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Paradox by Christos N. Gage and Luis Henrique Ribeiro

01/06/2012. Contributed by Andy Whitaker

Buy Paradox in the USA - or Buy Paradox in the UK

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pub:Arcana Comics. 88 page graphic novel/pdf file. Price: $14.95 (US). ISBN: 978-1-1-897548-862-2.

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‘ Paradox’ is a gritty detective novel from Arcana Studio based in an alternative dimension that has the characters crossing over into our more predictable dimension. For this novel, we have Christos N. Gage doing the story, art by Luis Henrique Ribeiro, colours by Ian Sokoliwski and letters by Sean O’Reilly.

The story starts in the alternative dimension where the civilisation is based on magic rather than science. Indeed, science is held in a very low regard. Detective Sean Nault is investigating the murder of a drug dealer when he is diverted to investigate reports of a prowler. This turns out to be another murder and as he is assessing the scene, his police accomplice is murdered. These murders have something in common as the people died by having a small metal projectile driven into them at incredible speed. This is not a method of killing the detective has seen before as no trace of magic can be detected.

Detective Nault is a bit of a maverick as he uses what he calls ‘ common sense’ but his colleagues disparagingly call ‘ science’. His investigation leads him to enlist the aid of Winston Churchill, who is an extremely powerful sorcerer. Churchill has retired to the USA after the war and has been aware of the existence of another dimension. The story quickly progresses to more than a murder story as the detective now has to stop a plot that could wipe out half the population of Earth.

There is a lot to like in this novel as the artwork and production is to the usual Arcada high standard, the story has depth and kicks along at a good pace before reaching a suitable explosive ending. My only criticism is that the alternative dimension is too similar to this one. I would have expected that if the civilisation had developed using magic it would be substantially different. Apart from the use of magic instead of science there is a lot of commonality between the dimensions such as telephones and cars. This is just nit-picking on what is a very good story that is well worth the asking price.

Andy Whitaker

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This book has 100 votes in the sci-fi charts

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