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Formats
Paperback Details
  • 11/2021
  • 9798769111228 B09M5HRZ3W
  • 274 pages
  • $15.00
Pete Fitz
Author, Contributor, Editor (anthology)
Post Traumatic
Pete Fitz, author
As a child, Dagan Harris, was rumored to have eyes that filled with black and sent him into a preternatural rage. Now a father, with hints of schizophrenia, Dagan is called into the fray of WWII. Dagan ships out because he believes his father is communicating with him from beyond the grave. Dagan's wife, Eleanor, fiercely objects his departure, calling him a coward for leaving their son behind. As a bomber pilot, then a prisoner of war, Dagan survives the impossible and the trauma of war begins to take a toll. He questions his reality, his past, and the bizarre villains he must face off against - are they real...or projections from his war-torn mind, body, and soul? This 270 page book is the exciting start to an ongoing series - a hero's journey that ties in real historical events and characters. The mysteries of World War II and many more evils of human history take on a whole new meaning when viewed through the fantastical lens of Post Traumatic.
Reviews
Fitz and Perkins explore supernatural powers in the second World War in this heady, complex graphic novel. In the aftermath of the Pearl Harbor attack and urged on by dreams of his dead father, Dagan Harris enlists, leaving behind his wife and young son. He is captured and suffers at a Japanese POW camp, where his long suppressed rage–and superhuman strength–surfaces during a revolt. Meanwhile, Dagan’s father’s soul is trapped by Horus, an immortal being who has been pulling strings all over the world while inhabiting a rotting body. News of the POW revolt led by a man whose eyes turn black worries Horus. Following the war, visions of ghosts leave Dagan little peace, as the story winds towards possible answers.

Fitz blends alternate history, demonic horror, and superhero origin story into a transfixing mélange that is, at times, a challenge to keep up with. His worldbuilding hints at broader imagined details likely to be explored in future volumes, like Dagan’s ability to kill remotely or his aunt Dinah’s blank states; the storytelling requires close attention to catch details. Side characters and later additions would benefit from clearer motivations, but the surprises are interesting–such as the connection between Horus and Christopher Columbus–and the action and bizarre happenings keep readers engaged.

Perkins’s artwork is crisp and richly detailed, suggesting at times a cross between the Hernandez brothers and Charles Burns. Even ghosts and demons retain a naturalistic feel with little stylization, and the use of repeat pages for flashbacks adds to the potent sense of disorientation. Color could have helped clarify some moments, as fluids, weaponized lightning, and other elements can be hard to discern in black and white, but the art and story build on each other in productive, enjoyable ways, drawing readers into nightmarish scenes. The trippy, intriguing Post-Traumatic will whet appetites of fans of grownup graphic novels and promises plenty of avenues for more exploration.

Takeaway: Complex mythology and honed artwork offer a unique graphic novel set against an alternate WWII.

Great for fans of: Über, Locke & Key.

Production grades
Cover: B+
Design and typography: A
Illustrations: A
Editing: B
Marketing copy: A-

Formats
Paperback Details
  • 11/2021
  • 9798769111228 B09M5HRZ3W
  • 274 pages
  • $15.00

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