In East of West, Jonathan Hickman and Nick Dragotta find a way to mix a few science fiction themes with a major typical fantasy plot - the beast of the apocalypse - in a very interesting way. This first volume is a presentation of the characters, their general background and drive and where they stand in this weirdly time displaced, wonderfully confused, alternate history Earth. The reader follows Death who is against his three apocalyptic siblings (here incarnated as children) and his quest for a human woman he seems to love. "I love you to death" gets a whole new meaning and scope in East of West, as a few characters get to murder entire armies or determine the results of a promotion by killing off the unwanted "candidates".
This is exactly what I enjoy in introductory volumes: a story that piques my curiosity without revealing itself too much, characters I really want to get to know, and a world intriguing enough (both technologically and politically) that I can hardly wait to see it further explored.
I got to read this first volume from NetGalley, but I liked it so much that I bought the paperback and will order the next ones This is Hickman at his usual best and Dragotta making me a fan, while their characters live between apocalypse and armageddon.
Originally published in PT and EN on my blog.