Shadoweyes, vol. 2

Shadoweyes 2Summary: In the futuristic, dystopian city of Dranac, moody teenager Scout Montana is an aspiring vigilante, but her first attempt to beat up a mugger is halted when she’s hit in the head with a brick and knocked unconscious. When she awakens, she discovers that she’s able to transform into a strange, blue, clawed, superhuman creature! In this new body she becomes the vigilante Shadoweyes… This is the second volume in Wet Moon creator Ross Campbell’s refreshingly offbeat and authentic teen superhero story.

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Shadoweyes, vol. 2, by Ross Campbell 7.75

This second offering of ‘Shadoweyes‘ continues where the last one left off, with Shadoweyes living at home under the concerned but supportive and trusting umbrage of her mom. Her friendship with Sparkle continues to develop, while she is becoming more alienated from Kyisha and getting closer to Noah.

Now that Noah has become a vigilante himself, she is considering partnering up with him. She also has a small crush on him. And maybe Sparkle too – who has made herself a superheroine costume to fulfill her aspirations to be one. She has also made Shadoweyes the most hilariously girly suit, which she agrees to wear.

Eventually, Sparkle joins Shadoweyes and Noah, but gets traumatized by the violence she sees. She didn’t understand that, even though they do laudable things such as fighting bullies and saving animals, they are merciless in their approach, frequently using extreme measures to punish those they consider guilty.

The book explores justice and morality to a larger degree this time. One perfect example of this is when they find a couple of kids torturing someone that they’ve kidnapped. Shadoweyes kills them brutally, but she is constantly self-questioning what is right and wrong, something that’s an essential contrast to current pop culture fare.

The book also delves into each main character’s personal world more, exploring the many things they struggle with daily. This remains a book that’s focused on the character dynamics more than on action. There are a few “action” sequences, but they are brief and hardly what one would call gratuitous. Campbell goes deeper.

And that’s what I like most about this book, and of Campbell: he treats his characters as beings, not just as heroes that we should instantly idolize. The characters often struggle between their intentions and their eventual actions, putting us in a position where we can understand both sides of the equation – and letting us struggles with the answers.

It’s a fairly sharp book, all things considered, and the only reason  I’m giving it a lower note than the last book, is because it doesn’t bring in any new elements; it merely explores the previously-established themes and dynamics further. It’s superb, but it doesn’t feel as satisfying as it did at the onset.

I’m totally going to read book three, though: ‘Shadoweyes’ is easy to love.

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