Something Wicked magazine review

July 2009 issue
(Thanks to Vianne Venter and Something Wicked magazine)

Police Inspector Sam Hart is on a mission to find his wife’s killer, but his journey will lead him to dark places both within himself and in the crime-free future Cape Town where the murderer walks free. The thing about this graphic novel that excites me the most is that I can see a lot of people relating to it, particularly young people.

Project H is a pretty dark murder mystery with a dash of political sci-fi and urban fantasy that looks at fundamental issues of faith, disillusionment, pain and redemption in a way that is at once easily accessible and plausibly complex. It’s arguable that all thrillers are morality tales in one way or another, and this one is an interesting beast - although it’s set in a religious context, it doesn’t sacrifice story for message, and manages to suck you in pretty fast.

All-round it’s an enjoyable, engaging story that sweeps the reader along. The story is well structured and engaging, with a strong pace that keeps you turning the pages. The characters are well-constructed and the hero’s journey is morally complex and easy to invest in. The dialogue is good and especially fun where the voices of the characters have captured the Capetonian vernacular.

It’s really nice to get to wander around in the story world of a graphic thriller that’s set in a familiar environment – look closely and you’ll recognise the street corners, the buildings, the backdrops … even the characters feel like people you’ve met on the street. It’s also well-researched and thorough; the author knows his subject and has that South African sensibility for drama.

The exquisite cover art is sadly not matched by the interior work, though there’s no doubt that a ton of work went into its frame-by-frame execution and the overall design is pretty slick. The creator’s enormous dedication to this project is apparent, though he’s chosen not to put his name on his work, which is part of his own mission.

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