New World by David Jesus Vignolli

A colorful and evocative piece of art, Vignolli’s New World is the coming together of three cultures in the Americas. A young Native Indian woman whose spiritual world has been vastly disrupted by the coming of the Europeans. An African slave-musician who has had his magical flute taken and his chance for freedom dashed. A Portuguese sailer who sees a path to redemption in helping this two threatened peoples. This graphic novel is an exploration of mythology, magical realism, and a conflict that still rages inside many.

I know it’s cliche, but I was drawn by the art and stayed for the story.  I knew after just a couple pages: after a stunning opening showing the discovery of the “new world,” we are introduced to the character of the young Native. She is running through the forest with her magical bow looking for her parrot friend. A giant animal that she can ride about the jungle. She lands, messes with some kids playing in trees, goes exploring and then hears a scuffle at the riverside. A ‘white giant’ is harassing an African slave… the young Native follows and sees the extent of the slave trade. From there the narrative expands to a clash between all cultures with magic and monsters taking a large part in the fight.

First off, I would definitely call this an all-ages comic. There are a slew of metaphors that are both easily accessible and have great depth. The book presents many different perspectives which is key to illuminating the powerful plot threads as the narrative gets going. And the art: Please go to Vignolli’s website here to get a preview of New World.

If this at all sounds like something you would be interested in, pick it up! Definitely Recommended.

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