Friday, October 3, 2014

The Rise of Aurora West Blog Tour: Review + Artwork Reveal

Today I'm super excited to be a part of the promotional tour for The Rise of Aurora West, a graphic novel featuring a young girl who battles monsters right alongside her superhero father. As many of you may have guessed based on the posts you find on this blog week in and week out, I don't read and review graphic novels very often, but it's always fun for me to take a step outside my paranormal YA comfort zone and try something different. I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Aurora and look forward to seeing what the next book holds in store!

Before I get to my review, I have the pleasure of sharing with you a piece of original artwork by David Rubin to give you an idea of what Aurora and her father face night after night. Meet Sadisto!

The Rise of Aurora West introduces us to a young woman learning how to battle the monsters that lurk in shadowy corners and dark alleys, taking instruction from none other than her father and mentor. The dynamic between the two of them is of particular interest above and beyond the action and artwork that are staples of graphic novels, as heroes and heroes-in-training are so typically robbed of their parents at a young age. While Aurora's mother is notably missing, having been killed years ago, her father is present and accounted for, though that presence extends primarily to being physically in her life while remaining emotionally absent. His mind is solely focused on hunting down those responsible for his wife's death, and his tunnel vision prevents him from seeing Aurora as anything other than a protege; another mind and body to help him fight back the tide of evil. Part of the appeal of the next installment is the desire to see if their dynamic can change, shifting from master and apprentice to the much more nuanced relationship of a father and daughter.

The artwork, as is always the case for me with graphic novels, was one of the main things that grabbed my interest initially, and I loved seeing what the imaginations of Mr. Pope, Mr. Petty and Mr. Rubin were able to conjure for Ms. West and her father. I will say that the black and white of the illustrations at times made it more difficult to discern what exactly was taking place than has been my experience with full color graphic novels, but that is a minor complaint and one more personal in nature. Overall, The Rise of Aurora West is quick and entertaining, giving us enough information about Aurora and her family situation to have us rooting for her in the present while leaving us greatly looking forward to seeing how things continue to unfold for her in the next installment.

• • • • • • • • • • • •


The extraordinary world introduced in Paul Pope's Battling Boy is rife with monsters and short on heroes... but in this action-driven extension of the Battling Boy universe, we see it through a new pair of eyes: Aurora West, daughter of Arcopolis's last great hero, Haggard West. A prequel to Battling Boy, The Rise of Aurora West follows the young hero as she seeks to uncover the mystery of her mother's death, and to find her place in a world overrun with supernatural monsters and all-too-human corruption. With a taut, fast-paced script from Paul Pope and JT Petty and gorgeous, kinetic art from David Rubin, The Rise of Aurora West (the first of two volumes) is a tour de force in comics storytelling.

Be sure and check out the other participating blogs for more original artwork by Mr. Rubin!

Wednesday, September 24th – Bunbury in the Stacks
Thursday, September 25th – Green Bean Teen Queen
Friday, September 26th – The Book Rat
Saturday, September 27th – The Book Wars
Sunday, September 28th – Fly to Fiction
Monday, September 29th – Panel Patter
Tuesday, September 30th – Finding Wonderland
Wednesday, October 1st – Fleen
Thursday, October 2nd – Beth Fish Reads
Friday, October 3rd – Supernatural Snark
Saturday, October 4th – Book Sake


  1. I have been reading more graphic novels lately and have had very good experiences so I'm glad to discover a new one to check out! I hadn't heard of this but I love the idea of a girl and her father teaming up to be heroes. Black and white illustrations are always trickier for me too, but I like the look of this so far. Lovely review, thanks for sharing!

    1. This was my first black and white graphic novel, and it was just a little harder for me to sort through. Not a huge deal though, I still had fun with Aurora and her dad!

  2. This sounds like a very interesting take on the superhero theme, with a father that is alive but not being much of a father figure and having to figure out the mother's death... Black & white is usually harder for me to follow too, but I blame it on how rarely I read graphic novels, something I always say I must change!
    Fantastic review, Jenny!

    1. He won't even let her call him "Dad" when they're training or fighting which made me sad, but it also made me want to see where their relationship will go moving forward:)

  3. Oh I love this! Thanks for sharing it with us Jenny! It all sounds very intriguing. :)

    Have a lovely weekend!!

  4. I am such a sucker for a superhero story! I love this!

  5. It's like Supernatural meets super heroes! I haven't been reading many graphic novels lately, but this looks good. I'm used to black and white images, because I used to read lots of Manga, so that won't bother me.

  6. I don't think I'd want to meet Sadisto in a dark alley given the character's name and look of him, but the artwork's cool. I'm happy that that carried through to the graphic novel as well. And, who doesn't love stories that feature monsters, especially this time of year!

  7. She looks kick.ass, I already like her

  8. I've been curious about this one since Dan Dos Santos (illustrator/artist) promoted it. I might have to check this one out for the artwork!

  9. I like the drawings. Pretty neat.