Skinwalker Studios have just launched a Kickstarter for the third installment of the celebrated coming-of-age mythos graphic novel series, Monsterwood.
Monsterwood Book 3: Annihilation is co-written by special effects artist Jason Rosen and Nicholas Efstathiou, with art by celebrated Marvel, DC, tabletop game designer, Steve Ellis (The Walking Dead, Dungeons and Dragons) and letters and book design by Nathan Pride (Jim Henson’s The Storyteller: Dragons).
Here’s the official blurb:
Destruction spills out of the city. The Zumari, fearless and loyal fighters to the Regent, seek to return his niece, Jocosta, and punish those who have sheltered her in Monsterwood. Their orders are simple: burn Monsterwood to the ground. As the young Jovis and Jocasta ready a small army of rebels to unseat the Regent, they must overcome the physical and mental challenges they face.
Monsterwood is an unforgiving school, and the Zumari are the fiercest fighters in the land. The road to the city is hard and strewn with the bodies of those slain by the Zumari. The rebels bear witness to this destruction as they make their way to their final destination: Revolution.
The Regent plots from his throne, secretly guided by his spectral council, as he awaits the arrival of a mysterious and deadly stranger, known only as the Northman, a warrior whose only joy comes from killing. Jovis and Jocasta must lead the rebels to the city, for a battle is coming, and not all those who enter will survive.
Speaking about the launch, Rosen said “First and foremost, I hope readers get a great fantasy adventure story with engaging characters that they can relate to, past that, my biggest wish would be that it becomes a story that gives people something to hold on to.”
He continued, adding “There is so much division and chaos in the world right now, if Monsterwood can entertain the reader and simultaneously give them the hope of a more unified, more peaceful world, all the better. It’s my spin on the classic hero’s journey. That type of story still resonates with me, as they do others. Many of the themes explored in Monsterwood are what we are seeing play out in the world right now. Who are we individually? Who are we collectively? What is our purpose? What can we, as an individual do to make the world a better place, and what is the cost of doing so? I am lucky to explore these thoughts and this story with such amazing collaborators like Nick and Steve who have helped inspire and help bring my ideas to life.”
“The world we’ve put together here is really unique, the characters are fun, the story is powerful and exciting, and the monsters are a blast to draw,” added Ellis. “In this book I can really push the fantasy artist in me while still doing comics. Jason has a very definitive idea of Monsterwood, while remaining open to expanding aspects of the world and story, so being a co-creator on this book is a great opportunity to really stretch ideas and designs.”
The Kickstarter Campaign, which continues until Wednesday the 18th of August, features a wide variety of backer tiers to suit any budget. So whether it’s PDFs and physical copies of all three volumes of the series, a variety of sketch and artwork options from Ellis (pencil, ink and watercolour) and add-ons including original art from the book, funky magnets and a slick wall tapestry(!), this one is definitely well worth a look.