Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Booknote: Grayson, Volume 1

Tim Seeley,, Grayson, Volume 1: Agents of Spyral. New York: DC Comics, 2015. ISBN: 9781401252342.

Genre: graphic novels and comics
Subgenre: superheroes, espionage and secret agents
Format: e-book galley
Source: Provided by publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. 

Dick Grayson has undergone quite a life journey: circus acrobat, sidekick to Batman, a superhero on his own, a martyr presumably dead after being unmasked by the Crime Syndicate, and now double agent. DC is starting a new series featuring Dick Grayson, and it looks like a good start.

This series has quite a bit of intrigue and mystery. Who really are the bosses in Spyral? We can't see the overseer's face. What exactly are they doing? As we read and Dick goes on new missions for them, we wonder what is Spyral up to? What are they after? The suspense is also there as we wonder whether Dick will be exposed as a mole inside Spyral or not. The series is just starting out, so much of this volume is setting him up within Spyral, an organization that deals in espionage, brainwashing, manipulation, and misdirection. Dick is infiltrating them on Batman's behalf, but how long can he go given how much Spyral keeps tabs on him? Not to mention that Spyral has put implants and post-hypnotic commands in Dick's mind, so he has that to contend with as well. There is a lot going on in this series.

The series is a fast paced read. We get into the story right away, and we go deeper and deeper as we read. Fans of Dick Grayson since his early days will certainly appreciate these new stories. However, you do not need to have read previous volumes in order to enjoy this series. You get a quick recap at the beginning, and there are enough references throughout the comics to get the sense of how the storylines have progressed.

For libraries that collect graphic novels and comics, if you collect Batman and other Bat Family titles, you will want to add this to your collections. Also readers who like works of espionage, secret agents, and intrigue may feel moved to try this one as well.

I really liked this one, and I will look for the next one. It looks like a good start, but we will see if they can keep up the pace.

According to the description, the volume collects issues 1-4 of the Grayson comic, the Grayson Annual, Volume 1, and a story from Secret Origins, #8.  However, I will note the galley I received was incomplete as it seems I only got the first four comic issues, and one of those issues was packed in the galley twice (which was a bit of an annoyance, but a small issue).

4 out of 5 stars.

This book qualifies for the following 2015 Reading Challenges:

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