[Book Review] Empty Zone Vol.1: Conversations with the Dead

Empty Zone Vol. 1: Conversations with the Dead / Jason Shawn Alexander (Powell's Books)

Empty Zone gives is a gritty cyber-punk future set 80 years after a world-wide blackout.  Corinne White is a relic from days when people trusted networks and remote storage for data, literally built to seek out and siphon off those digital secrets as a tool in a corporate espionage war.

Now she lives on the fringes of society, a data-courier and black-market specialist.  There are no others like her anymore.  Just the ghosts and memories, which end up as more than faintly remembered artifacts when they are the remnants of people who consumed information, even if their bodies have rotted away and forgotten them.

This graphic novel is dark, haunting, mournful, and gorgeous.  The artwork is evocative and layered, perfectly matching the story.

Corinne herself is deadly, depressive, and determined.  Her reality is warped by the changes in her physiology, the trauma of her past, her past actions, and by the intervention of technology around her.  The art style is a perfect compliment to the story, both for the gritty setting and for the emotional state of Corinne.  Highly enjoyed this read.

Advance Reader Copy courtesy of Image Comics in exchange for an honest review; changes may exist between galley and the final edition.


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