Writer: Sebastian Girner
Artist: John Bivens
Colorists: Iris Monahan
Letterer: Jeff Powell
Publisher: Vault Comics

In 16th Century Japan, we follow a young woman named Ketsuko during two time periods: the “present day” and three years prior. Ketsuko takes the place of her brother to lead their clan into battle, but he is the one to take the credit once the fighting is done. In the present day, we learn that Ketsuko is quite possibly the last of her clan right as she is set to begin a journey through the mountains. Three years prior, we are in the midst of an important battle between Ketsuko’s clan and a rival clan that, in the present day, has taken over much of Japan. On top of being a great warrior in disguise, Ketsuko has another secret: there is a voice only she can hear that is asking to be let in. While the source of the voice is not revealed, the context from the rest of the issue leads us to believe that it is a devil speaking to Ketsuko.

This issue does a wonderful job of setting up the two journeys that we will see take shape across time while also leaving us with some questions. There is definite gore and violence in this book, but it is done in such a way that it doesn’t turn the average reader away. I personally am not a fan of gore or violence, but the inclusion of such in this book did not hinder my enjoyment. I felt that this story was Mulan-esque with a horror twist and I am very interested to see where this goes.

Review by Jen Ricano