Murder in Abyssinia is a classic action adventure story in the same vein as Indiana Jones, following a group of British citizens abroad as they get themselves embroiled in a scandal deep in Ethiopia. There’s murder and intrigue, hidden agendas, and an ancient artifact whose importance is immeasurable. The overarching societal events are all based in history, adding an air of reality to the narrative.
Overall, I found the story interesting. It unfolded slowly, until the explosive cliffhanger that will no doubt lead into the second novel. None of the loose ends were tied up, leaving a lot up in the air for the fate of the characters. Though somewhat frustrating, I found it to mirror classic serialized mystery and adventure stories.
The art style was influenced by an older style of comic books and paid great attention to the cultural details of the various cities and the coronation itself. There’s a lot of history enclosed in this short graphic novel and the artifacts themselves were done well. I was especially impressed with the final page and its use of shadowing mixed with the night sky and the wildlife.
Overall, Murder in Abyssinia is the start of what I’m sure will be a fascinating series. The characters were intriguing and the story itself hints at a much larger mystery that’s yet to unfold.
NOTE: I was provided a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for my honest, unbiased review.
Murder in Abyssinia: A Renée Stone Adventure
Written by Julie Birmant
Art by Clément Oubrerie
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