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Jan's Atomic Heart and Other Stories

Simon Roy (Author & Illustrator) Image Comics (Publisher)

> Review by Michael Hoffert Jr.

A prosthetic robot body that might be a bomb. A man stranded on a desert island with a talking gorilla. Military men selling arms to crabs. What do these have in common? These are a taste of this collection of short stories written and drawn by Simon Roy, a rising star in the world of independent comic books. With his offbeat science fiction tales, Roy is immediately evocative of the European masters like Moebius, yet wholly refreshing in his originality. The work in these shorts show an artist in the process of refining his craft on the page while already having a clearly defined voice with a lot to say. The artwork is simultaneously beautiful and slightly grotesque, but in the best possible sense, and the panel-to-panel storytelling is impeccable. Roy demonstrates a high level of wit and humor with the self-referential opening page, but he also excels in several silent sequences that add a sense of tension, humanity, and poignancy to this admittedly odd but thoroughly enjoyable collection. A must-read for fans of Asimov, Orwell, and Vonnegut.

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