Book review: Shattered Warrior, by Sharon Shinn, illustrated by Molly Knox Ostertag

Shinn, Sharon. Shattered Warrior. Il. By Molly Knox Ostertag. First Second, 2017. $17.99. 246p. ISBN 978-1-62672-089-3. Ages 12-15. P8Q9

In her first graphic novel, Shinn writes about a formerly privileged 18-year-old, Colleen Cavenaugh, who lost almost everything ten years earlier when the alien Derichets took over her planet. She lives in her almost destroyed mansion on her former great estate and works at a mindless job in a factory, sorting minerals before she gets involved in a revolution with members of the mining underclass. The danger of her rebellion increases when she is reunited with her niece as her relationship with another guerilla develops into an affair. Shinn has built a magnificent world peopled with diverse ethnic groups who live under occupation and face violence and possible death from trying to take back their independence.

Verdict: Complex characterization is accompanied by a history of the planet and exciting suspense along with an in-depth perspective of class struggles and gender differences. The vividly colored artwork is equally strong, frequently carrying the plot and expressing the defiance of the multi-faceted characters.

Summer 2017 review by Nel Ward.

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