The Murder (From the Dust Book 3)

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An Open Letter Kathy Rhodes. A Perfunctory Affair Chris Cobb. I am extremely happy that I decided to check out the Darth Vader series, because I absolutely loved this first volume of the series, Vader , and had an amazing time reading it.

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Not only was this one of the first comic book volumes in the new Star Wars canon that showed what an absolute badass Darth Vader is but it features a captivating story, some major Star Wars moments, incredible artwork and iconic new characters. This first volume of Darth Vader contains some epic sequences that really highlight how awesome and destructive the character of Vader really is.

This meeting is in some ways very similar to the meeting Luke has with Jabba at the start of Return of the Jedi , with Vader entering alone to stand before Jabba in his audience chamber. It makes for one hell of an introduction to the series, and does an incredibly successful job of setting up Vader as a major badass.

This first issue 1 also has a great ending, showing Vader nonchalantly having a conversation over a smoking pile of Tusken Raiders that he spent the day killing. The sequences featuring Vader assembling his own private resources and working against the benefits of the Empire are quite fascinating, and results in some interesting missions. While the Emperor is actually impressed with Vader showing initiative and working outside the system, Vader is outraged that the Emperor has been creating abominations to replace him for the last 20 years.

The Emperor reveals that he has been disappointed with Vader ever since he was defeated at the end of Revenge of the Sith , and that he needs to prove himself worthy of the Emperor again. While all the above scenes are pretty awesome, the best part of this volume is the incredible conclusion of the volume in issue 6. Vader, already enraged after his talk with the Emperor, finds out that the young Jedi he encountered is named Skywalker. The scene then continues with Vader calling up the Emperor to confront him, in a nice continuation of the storyline I mentioned above.

However, rather than revealing that he knows the Emperor lied to him all those years ago, he instead keeps it secret and indicates he understands his place with the Emperor. He will be mine. There is so much in this scene to love. This whole sequence is just incredible and has to be one of my favourite moments in this entire series. It also cleverly matches the end of the first volume of the related Star Wars comic book series and actually expands on that original comic for fans who were curious about it.

While the focus on Darth Vader is amazing, this volume also features the introduction of several outstanding new characters in the Star Wars canon, Doctor Aphra and her droids. Dr Aphra is an awesome character, as she is essentially an anti-Indiana Jones living in the Star Wars universe.

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Aphra recovers valuable and often extremely dangerous artefacts from across the galaxy, either for her own use or to sell for a profit. Aphra story arc in the first volume is pretty darn compelling. While Aphra is willing to help Vader, and even thinks of it as a cool opportunity, she is under no illusions about the fact that Vader will kill her at some point in the future and is a constant mess of emotions as a result.

There is a fantastic scene in this volume where Aphra makes it clear to Vader that she knows he is eventually going to kill her and begs him to show some mercy when the time comes and use his lightsabre rather than worse methods, such as chucking her out of an airlock this actually comes into play later in quite a clever way. I also liked that the creative team really played up the Indian Jones aspects of her character at times, such as her introductory sequence, where she is forced to escape a series of booby traps, including a spherical droid, similar to the boulder sequence in Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Humour like that really makes Aphra an excellent addition to this volume, and I love how the creative team are able to get some dark moments out of her relationship with Darth Vader. Triple Zero has been programmed with a number of languages and human protocols, but he has also been programmed for torture and is equipped with a number of syringes and other torture implements. BT-1, on the other hand, is actually a lethal assassin droid disguised as an astromech in order to appear harmless, and is loaded with multiple weapons, including a massive cannon and a flamethrower.

Both of them had been decommissioned by the Empire for being too dangerous which tells you a lot , but are brought back online by Aphra and Vader. These two droids are an extremely fun duo, acting a lot like the iconic C-3PO and R2-D2, except with a complete disregard for human life and a desire for as much destruction and death as possible. You are on fire and also dead. These two are an extremely entertaining couple of characters, and it was fun to see them parody the classic Star Wars droids in such a clever way. I loved the artwork in this volume, and some of the cool details that were included in the various scenes added so much to the story.

For example, the fantastic closing sequence where Vader finds out his son is still alive is superbly enhanced by the cracks that appear on all the glass around Vader as he comes to his realisations. This looks so cool and really highlights how angry he is feeling. The art also showcases all the awesome action contained within this book, especially when it comes to all the destruction Vader and his cohorts unleash to achieve their goals.

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There are so many explosions and so much destruction laced throughout the book, and the artists who contributed to this first volume make them look pretty darn spectacular. I also loved the close-up action when Vader gets to work with the force and his lightsabre. The artists do an impressive job showcasing all the destruction he is capable of, and the reader is constantly reminded of that amazing Darth Vader scene at the end of Rogue One.

The artists also do an amazing job conveying character emotion through the subtleties of their facial expressions. The first volume of the Darth Vader series was an outstanding example of Star Wars fiction which really modernises one of the most iconic Star Wars characters of all times.

Darth Vader is masterfully reborn here as a being of pure destruction, as this first volume places him in some extremely compelling situations. Overall, this first volume did a fantastic job setting the stage for the rest of the series, and I had an incredible time reading this comic. For my latest Waiting on Wednesday segment, I look at a book that promises to be quite entertaining and features an incredibly eye-catching cover, Grave Importance by Vivan Shaw. This has been a fun and intriguing series that combines intriguing mysteries and supernatural adventures with fascinating monster medicine.

The titular series protagonist, Dr. Helsing and her monster companions also find themselves wrapped up in a series of magical or demonic incidences which require their intervention. I have really enjoyed the first two books in the series and have been keeping an eye out for the third book, Grave Importance, for a few months now. I am quite excited by this third book, as it has an awesome-sounding synopsis and I think that it has a lot of promise. A charmingly witty fantasy adventure in the world of Strange Practice, starring Dr.

Greta Helsing, doctor to the undead, who must solve a dangerous medical mystery at a secret French spa for mummies. Oasis Natrun: a private, exclusive, highly secret luxury health spa for mummies, high in the hills above Marseille, equipped with the very latest in therapeutic innovations both magical and medical.

To Dr. With help from her friends and colleagues — including Dr. Faust yes, that Dr. Faust , remedial psychopomps, a sleepy scribe-god, witches, demons, a British Museum curator, and the inimitable vampyre Sir Francis Varney — Greta must put a stop to this mysterious illness before anybody else crumbles to irreparable dust…. There are a number of great plot elements contained within the synopsis above that have me excited for Grave Importance. In particular, the continued use of monster medicine and the inclusion of a great troupe of supporting characters should make for an awesome read.

The focus on monster medicine in the previous books was probably one of my favourite things about the Dr. Greta Helsing series. The plot synopsis seems to strongly indicate that this book will be featuring a lot more monster medicine, as Helsing is investigating a unique medical malady among the mummies she is tending.

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That sounds perfect to me, and I hope that Shaw spends quite a large part of the book examining this medical mystery. It also sounds like Shaw will be featuring some cool characters in her latest book. The first two novels have both featured a fun group of supporting characters, most of whom are monstrous or magical in origin. The synopsis above features references to several of these existing characters, and I will be very happy to see them come back. It also looks like Shaw has created a few new characters for this third novel, and several of their descriptions make them sound like fun inclusions.

I think that this combination of existing and new characters will add a lot to the story and should make for an entertaining read. Grave Importance is shaping up to be another great entry in the enjoyable Dr. It sounds like Shaw is stacking the plot with some excellent story elements, and it should prove to be a lot of fun. Grave Importance is coming out in late August , and I look forward to reading and reviewing it.

Skip to content. Originally published in the Canberra Weekly on 27 June A Capitol Death by Lindsey Davis I have been looking forward to this one for a few months and it is the only book on this list I spent some money on. The Need by Helen Phillips One of the more unusual books I got this week, it sounds like the story looks at alternate realities which could be cool.

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