cover image Westlake Soul

Westlake Soul

Rio Youers. ChiZine (Diamond, dist.), $15.99 trade paper (250p) ISBN 978-1-926851-55-6

In this wry, heartbreaking fantasy, Youers (Dark Dreams, Pale Horses) explores the dark landscape of a healthy mind trapped in an unresponsive body. A tragic accident—“the ultimate wipeout”—left 23-year-old surfing champion Westlake Soul in an unresponsive vegetative state, but it didn’t cripple his mind. Wes can read the minds of others, including his parents, passing birds, and the family dog. But with this superhero ability comes a deadly archenemy: Dr. Quietus, a sleek, dark figure who chases Wes “through the rain-slick streets of my coma.” Wes knows he is running out of time, as his parents have decided to remove his feeding tube and let him die. But Wes still has one thing left to do: punish Wayne, his gentle caregiver’s abusive boyfriend. His body losing strength, Wes fights to win one last battle. Youers deftly captures the voice and raw emotion of a young man struggling to delay the inevitable. (May)