The Steel Prince (Shades of Magic Vol. 1)
Author V.E. Schwab
Publisher Titan Comics | 2019
graphic novel | fantasy
Delve into the thrilling, epic tale of the young and arrogant prince Maxim Maresh, long before he became the king of Red London and adoptive father to Kell, the lead of A Darker Shade of Magic!
The youthful Maresh is sent to a violent and unmanageable port city on the Blood Coast of Verose, on strict orders from his father, King Nokil Maresh, to cut his military teeth in this lawless landscape.
There, he encounters an unruly band of soldiers, a lawless landscape, and the intoxicatingly deadly presence of the newly returned pirate queen, Arisa… (from Goodreads)
This review is spoiler-freeeee! 🙂
I finally got around to reading this comic bind-up and enjoyed it! Shades of Magic is one of my all-time favorite book series and I’m also a big fan of comics so this seems like the perfect thing for me. I’ll start by stating that Maxim is definitely not someone from the SOM world that I would’ve picked for a spin-off comic series. Most of the time I really don’t like him and other times I straight up hate this dude. But despite that, this was really interesting to read!
Learning a bit more about Rhy’s family was one of the coolest aspects. It’s fun to see more of the relationship between Maxim and Tieren as well as how Isra first got involved. It’s definitely not as detailed as the books are, but seeing the visual aspect of the magic was cool. The art was great (though at times a little more messy/abstract than I might’ve liked) but I especially liked how they depicted Arisa’s bone magic!
The storyline was fun but it was really short. I feel like the ending happened very quickly and it wasn’t as dramatic as it could’ve been. I do hope we go back to Red London and see a bit more about how Maxim becomes king and all that jazz. Being in a different city makes this comic feel a little isolated from SOM, which I guess it is, but I’m here to learn more about the world and the magic, not really for Maxim himself. I hope in future issues we see/hear about more familiar characters/places (like Rhy’s mom or some more info about Maxim’s search for Antari…). I’m interested to see where this goes! Overall, a cool comic!