Review – “IRIS” No. 2 By Kyle Reardon

The second installment of IRIS has been out for a little while now, and I want to give you a comprehensive review of this graphic novel thus far.  First of all, you have to know that this is a break-through genre for The Salvation Army’s Frontier Press, and I believe this is just portent of some amazing things to come!

IRIS is aesthetically pleasing.
You know the old phrase “don’t judge a book by its cover?” Unfortunately many who shop around for graphic novels will undoubtedly look at the cover and make a judgement call.   IRIS pleases the eye with its artistic style and depth of color.  Last time I reviewed IRIS, I made the comment that I wished they would have made it in color…well they did!  Looking back now at both installments; I find that they are equally pleasing to the eye in their own right.  I like the black and white first edition, and I like the second installment, which is in color.

Story Line & Ethics:
The story line in IRIS keeps you interested but it doesn’t give you more than you can handle all at once (which is a little frustrating to me because I have Netflix and I want to skip to the next episode to find out what happens next…but we have to wait).   Frontier Press, the publisher, introduces IRIS in this way: “IRIS now faces an uncertain future. Given a second chance at life, she faces a world convinced her body is a piece of technology owned by Biostronomy. IRIS searches for meaning and ways to use her growing physical strength, encountering difficult questions of faith along the way. She is a woman once dead, but alive again—however unnaturally. What debt does she owe and to whom? And what of her soul?”  There are some deeply philosophical and moral questions within this complex character and would be hero.  It does leave me wondering if they will they tackle such questions as life after death, ethical restraint as scientific knowledge expands, should man create or recreate life?  I can already see IRIS struggling with her new identity and how conflicted she must feel being a science experiment.  With an introduction of such a character in such a time as this, it is not too far fetched anymore to have to consider the moral and ethical dilemmas that are currently presenting themselves in real life cutting edge science.  These are some of the questions that have been provoked within me as I have read the first two editions of IRIS.    IRIS will keep you wanting to know more, and I believe this is where this graphic novel really excels!  As I said last time, I like how tangible-realistic science has been incorporated into this hero’s story.  I’m looking forward to seeing what happens next in No. 3!  I will be putting in my preorder for the next one just to see what takes place!

Breaking Stereotypes:
Not only is IRIS ground-breaking for Frontier Press, but I believe it is ground breaking for the genre of graphic novels.    Traditionally, the old classic graphic novels typically involved a male hero with the occasional female hero making cameo appearances.  I don’t want to read too much into any motives for this series (and I could be totally off base with my opinion), but I really like the fact that we have a female hero leading the way!   I believe it should be common place to feature a stand-alone female hero which can empower girls all around the world!  I’m not saying it can’t or doesn’t empower boys, and/or young adults too – I just love the fact that we have an amazing character in IRIS who just so happens to be female!

As a consumer – I simply want to know more about IRIS.
As I have already said, I really want to know what happens next (have I said that enough yet?  I don’t think so).
Should you buy IRIS and read it for yourself?  I would have to say YES!  Purchase a copy on Amazon Link Here.  It’s only $2.99 – Seriously?  That’s a great price and you will be happy with your small investment!  To Frontier Press and to Kyle Reardon, here’s just a couple of recommendations in my opinion – 1) the only issue that I had with the series thus far is the selection of the font, sometimes the letters get bunched together a bit and I had to refocus my eyes to properly read it.  Other than that  – 2) Keep delivering these epic installments and I will keep buying them! (I know I’m won’t be the only one!)

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