cover image Cosmoknights: Book One

Cosmoknights: Book One

Hannah Templer. Top Shelf, $19.99 trade paper (216p) ISBN 978-1-60309-454-2

Templer (the Glow series) breaks out in her first solo title, a gorgeous and timely space adventure saga. Pan, a young and rebellious mechanic, helps her planet’s princess (who happens to be her best friend) escape a forced marriage. Five years later, this has rendered Pan persona non grata in a quasifeudalistic society obsessed with royalty. But when Bee and Cass, a pair of charismatic “cosmoknights”—mech-suited fighters who compete in gladiatorial jousts to “win” princesses for their sponsors—show up wounded at her door, Pan discovers that she’s not the only person in the galaxy who hates the system. Pan stows away on the knights’ ship, and convinces them to let her join in their quest to liberate as many princesses as possible, by winning their hand and then setting them free; but will the newly formed trio survive their first bout? And who is the mysterious woman following them? Every panel hums and crackles with glowingly lush, well-realized worldbuilding. The dynamic action sequences, which merge tech and renaissance tropes, seem to leap off the page. But as lovely as Templer’s art is, it’s her political commentary that shines brightest: blunt yet incisive, Templer skewers patriarchal “go along to get along” mindsets and offers a dazzling vision of radical direct action—with rocket boots. Agent: Charlie Olsen, Inkwell. [em](Oct.) [/em]