May 15, 2016

(Graphic Novel) Michael Moorcock's Elric Vol. 1: The Ruby Throne by Julien Blondel

Blurb: Elric, the albino emperor, has ruled Melniboné for millennia - a feat made possible through magic and various herbs that serve to strengthen and prolong his life. However, Elric's empire is crumbling before him and now his envious cousin and prince of Melniboné, Yyrkoon, plots to claim the Ruby Throne for himself. 

     Yet when Elric's people come under the threat of a pirate attack, Elric believes that he can once again restore his authority and regain their faith by defeating the pirates. However, the true cost of this task will force him to reveal his allegiance to the dark Arioch, the most dominant of the Lords of Chaos...

Format: Elric Vol. 1: The Ruby Throne is a graphic novelization by Julien Blondel of Michael Moorcock's hit series beginning with Elric of Melnibone. I am reviewing the Kindle ebook version of the graphic novel which was 64 pages in length. The course of the 1st volume takes place with the events of the first Elric novel in beautiful artistic detail.

Story: The graphic novel was paced well with the main elements of the original story all touched on. The scene choices were well conducted and the dialogue was well implemented into the graphic novel format. Despite the brevity that comes with the graphic novel format, the story of Elric worked well and the characters were well defined in their roles. The melancholy emperor and his terrifying Melnibonean traditions were well captured. The scheming of Yyrkoon, Elric's cousin, was brought well to life. My interest was held throughout. This graphic novel has more depth to it than a lot of other graphic novelizations of fantasy novels I've read over the years.

Art: The illustrations are absolutely stunning in this one. The images capture the terrifying ceremonies and customs of the Melniboneans while also depicting an accurate and beautiful portrayal of Elric's white skin, hair and crimson eyes. The battle scenes are sweet and the armor and clothing was creative and left a much better and cooler image of the culture than what I had ever thought when reading the books. The scenery is beautifully drawn and I now have the perfect picture of Elric's throne and capital city. The illustrations made the story fairly grotesque at times when it needed to be grotesque and frightening when that was needed. Very beautiful artwork overall.

My Thoughts: I was very satisfied with my purchase. I don't read graphic novels very often but this was a really good one. The Elric series is among my favorites, it's been around for a really long time, and I really enjoyed seeing it brought to life. I will be purchasing the next volume so keep eyes peeled for my impressions on the sequels in the graphic novel format. If you're not into graphic novels, I would recommend this one because I am not an overly strong reader of them myself but I really enjoyed it. Great piece of art for a great story.

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