Books of Magic keeps it creepy with the latest issue.
Not everyone is a fan of the Sandman universe, and that’s on them. It’s fantastic; a blending of dozens of mythologies and mystical concepts, served up with a heaping side of humanity. Neil Gaiman was the creator of the place, but Vertigo Comics has commissioned four new titles set in in his reality, with Books of Magic being one of them. (Lucifer, The Dreaming, and House of Whispers being the other three.)
Author Kat Howard, artist Tom Fowler, and letterer Jordan Boyd are taking readers on a journey through several magical realms as Tim Hunter continues his pre-destined quest to become the most powerful magician the DC universe has ever seen (Vertigo Comics is owned by DC, and the Sandman series has always been intertwined with their universe).
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Faerie queens are notoriously tricky, especially in the Books of Magic
At the end of the last issue of Books of Magic Tim and Dr. Rose were basically trapped in the land of the Fae, at Queen Titania’s bequest. This issue starts out with Rose and Titania discussing how dangerous Tim could turn out to be, and Titania’s sneaky plan to keep Tim in the Fae forever, which involves removing his desire to leave (Desire is one of the seven Endless, anthropomorphic personifications of ideas.) Tim and Dr. Rose head to a goblin market, where Tim is having such a fun time he doesn’t realize he’s forgotten about the quest they originally embarked upon, to find his missing friend/crush Ellie, who was whisked away by an evil wizard posing as a librarian at their school. Tim wanders off with some faeries and ends up in the Forest of the Slain, a magical woodland that bleeds when a murderer walks through; sure enough, them trees are bleeding a whole bunch.
Books of Magic makes Tim a murderer, dozens of times over
Tim is understandably shaken by the forest’s revelation, and heads to Titania to find out the truth, which so happens to be that she removed his memories of the killings, for his own good. He asks for them back and Titania gives him a box with roughly fifty Fisher Price Little People shaped representations of those he murdered, including a baby. Books of Magic doesn’t explain who they were, but Tim is filled with guilt, and he and Dr. Rose have a not-so-pleasant chat about it, with Tim eventually deciding that he needs to get over it and get on with their mission. He carefully requests that Titania send them on their way, and she creates a door to where Ellis is supposedly located, and the two adventurers head out.
This issue added some high-level intrigue to Timothy’s story; who were all those dead people, and what did he kill them for? Is it a premonition of what is to come? What’s been happening to Ellie all this time? Apparently we find out the answer to that last question in the next issue, and it seems like things will come to a head between Timothy and the Cold Flame, the group responsible for her disappearance. 7/10; recommended. Let us know what you thought in the comments section below.