Fan-favorite webcomic creator Megan Rose Gedris (Yu+Me Dream) crafts a compelling tale of magic, deception, and wonder in this stunningly illustrated graphic novel about the bond between sisters.
Pragmatic engineer Anna works as a psychic in the Samson Brothers Circus, but she doesn't believe in anything supernatural—until her twin sister Kat is murdered and comes back as a very demanding ghost. Sharing a room with her sister was hard, but now they're sharing a body while trying to identify the killer. With few leads, a troupe full of secretive folk, and strange paranormal occurrences popping up around the circus, solving the case seems near impossible. But the murderer in their midst may be the least of their problems...
"Humorous and heartfelt, creepy and captivating; readers will eagerly hope for another volume." - Kirkus
About the Author
Megan Rose Gedris, aka Rosalarian, is a full-time comics writer and artist based in Chicago. She started making webcomics in 2002, with a focus on women and LGBTQ characters and is mostly self-taught. She has been a traveling performer since 2012, and has had a lot of adventures on the road, none of them involving ghosts, but a few of them involving a lot of blood. She loves cheese. Like, really loves it.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
At first I was a little lukewarm on the art in this comic, but as I started to read this I started to like it better. I think it just looks a little different from what I am used to reading in terms of comics. I think part of my issue was that this originated as a webcomic, and I think webcomic art just has a different feel to it. I don't think it's bad at all, I think maybe it just wasn't what I was expecting at first, but I grew to love it. I think what really won me over in this comic was the story. I was so interested in what was going on in this story, and there was a lot going on. The main plot is that Anna has discovered that her twin sister has been murdered and she goes around trying to figure out who in the circus they work for has done it. Anna is a pragmatic and believes in science and reason, which is funny because she is the circus' fortune teller. It's clear she feels bad scamming people, but a girl's got to eat! I really liked that she tried to see reason and find out the clues, even though she is convinced someone in particular has killed her sister. There's also a subplot with the law man of the town having put the leader of their circus in jail for no real reason, and the rest of the circus tries to make more money to collect for his bail. That gets more interesting later in the book, but at first it seemed so out of place. I couldn't stop reading this and going to the next page, because I just wanted to find out what was going to happen. Anna starts seeing her sister's ghost after her death, and I liked this part because she is 100% convinced that she is going crazy. Or is she? We get some snippets of the sisters lives before the circus, they ran away from an orphanage and I think it's alluded that bad stuff happened there. We don't know what, so I am hoping there is another issue to show us more about this. I'm really interested in what they ran away from, and what Kat has done that other people in the circus think she got what she deserved. My one complaint about this comic is that it ends on a massive cliffhanger! Like, I kept trying to click over to the next page because I didn't think it was over yet. I thought there was a glitch in the digital file I had, but then I saw other reviews mention the cliffhanger. I am hoping there is going to be another installment because the ending was so crazy and we still don't know who killed Kat. I NEED to know! I think this is another instance of the author & illustrator being the same person, and I like it. I don't think I've read anything by Gedris before, but I am interested in her work going forward. *I received a free egalley copy of this book in exchange for my honest review
Unusual artwork is used effectively in a murder mystery set in a traveling circus. Spectacle Vol 1 is good until the unsatisfactory conclusion. Twins Anna and Kat are members of a traveling circus. Anna is the fortune teller. Kat is a knife thrower. When Kat is murdered with her own knives, she appears as a ghost only to Anna. Anna investigates the crime. The artwork within Spectacle Vol 1 promises to be controversial. It is in the style of Picasso's blue period but uses mainly dusky reds, lavenders and chartreuse. The faces are almost cubist in their non-linear perspective so noses sometimes appear on the sides of faces. I liked the mystery at the heart of the plot. I would have liked to see more backstories of the other circus performers. Many seemed like only a stereotype like the conjoined twins and the bearded lady. It took me about a third of the book to get used to the art style. Once I did, I enjoyed its uniqueness. Spectacle Vol 1 collects issues #1 through 5. My problem with the collection is the abrupt ending. There is no resolution to the mystery here—only an inexplicable transformation that could mean anything. I actually purchased issue #4 because I thought that the last few pages of my Advanced Review Copy were missing. $1.99 later, I realized that issue #4 ended as suddenly as Vol 1. However, issue #4 included a page imploring the reader to purchase issue #5 in July 2018. While issues frequently employ cliff-hangers, it is rare and frustrating for collected volumes to do so. Because of this slight-of-hand, Spectacle Vol 1 receives 3 stars. Thanks to the publisher, Oni Press, and NetGalley for an advanced copy.