99. The Remnant by Stephen Baldwin

The Remnant by Stephen Baldwin and Andrew Cosby. Art by Julian Totino Tedesco (Canada) - (USA)

Pages: 128 pages
Ages: 14+
Finished: May 30, 2010
First Published: Mar. 23, 2010
Publisher: Boom! Studios
Genre: graphic novel, thriller, drama
Rating: 4.5/5

First sentence:

Hi, I've just gotten re-married and I need to add my wife to my insurance.

Acquired: Received a review copy from Harper Collins Canada.

Reason for Reading: Stephen Baldwin's name first caught my eye. I'll admit I like the guy. But the plot's "24" comparison intrigued me and I wanted to see how (or if) Baldwin's Christian influence showed up in the book.

Former CIA agent David Stacker has just been married and is looking forward to his honeymoon. As he leaves the Federal Building, it suddenly explodes into a million pieces. Stacker is in hospital briefly with minor injuries. But then the bodies keep piling up as natural disasters around the world become more frequent, he finds a bomb in his kitchen and then people start to vanish into thin air. With a mysterious man telling David he will help him and the police on his trail as a suspect in the Federal House bombing, David finds himself being asked to come back to work for the CIA.

I really enjoyed this book! It is very fast-paced and compelling. The art is gorgeous. The opening scenes start with Hurricane Katrina and a supernatural element that is carried throughout the book. There is a mysterious man who looks very much like an older days preacher: black suit, white shirt and very narrow black tie. The plot starts off (not quietly) but at a beginning point then continues to pick up pace like a rolling stone until the final, shocking, abrupt ending. The story holds a very deep Christian theme throughout which is easily seen if one is looking for it. There is no God or Jesus talk, it's not Christian in that sense, but in the underlying themes. The ending is very abrupt and makes one think more is to come in future volumes but the ending is the true ending and from a certain Christian point of view makes perfect sense. Now, don't get me wrong as this is not a Bible-thumping graphic novel. The story is full of excitement, spies, and actually reads like a TV show, thus being compared to "24" in it's summary.

As to suitability for teens, the book states recommended for young teens and up. The only thing that would concern me as a parent is the violence, which there is plenty of including blood, though it is not extreme. As to swearing, the word d*mn is used and there is one short sensuous scene with underclothes on which clearly emphasizes it is a married couple "making out".

I thought the story was exciting and well-done. I enjoyed some of the Christian themes though ultimately it was in conflict with my own Christian beliefs but that didn't stop me from having a fun ride with this one.


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