‘Sonata: Volume 1’ - Advance Trade Paperback Review

In a clash of two different cultures, Sonata serves as a newfound space saga. Here, we observe one group that is war mongering and another that strives for peace. From the get-go, writer David Hine excels in establishing this world; it’s grim and dark, going out of its way to display fabled creatures that act as their own deities. In weaving his tale, Hine and co-writer Brian Haberlin create a slow burn to be savored by the reader for the entirety of the series.

As the world-building progresses throughout the collected volume, the reader slowly greets the characters and comes to understand how they are integral to not only the series, but its forward momentum. In many ways, the focus on world-building in the first issue is pertinent for readers following the plot as the characters do. The character of Sonata herself is a likeable protagonist that serves as the reader's surrogate.

More interesting is the world that has been built by Hine and Haberlin. It’s one where two opposing ideologies believe their planet to be a holy land. Amidst this holy land is a presence of Sleeping Giants that proactively appear to be either monsters or gods. It’s no surprise that this series has been picked up for a television adaptation, as Hine recently announced. What’s more amazing is the allegorical nature that this series explores. At its heart, it’s the idea of finding a place where you can then find yourself, serving as a representation of the unabashed horrors that colonialism brought about in the modern world.

Even more impressive is the artwork by Haberlin and Geirrod Van Dyke that portrays a complementary style for the plot and world-building. It’s a beautiful mix of realism and steampunk art styles along with employing photogenic backgrounds. This collage of styles brings a joyous aesthetic for this series.


Creative Team: David Hine & Brian Haberlin (writers), Brian Haberlin (artist), Geirrod Van Dyke (colorist), Francis Takenaga (letterer)
Publisher: Shadowline / Image Comics
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