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REVIEW: Kill Your Darlings #1

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REVIEW: Kill Your Darlings #1

4.33/5.0 Stars
Rating if the Book Were a Movie: R

Creative Team:

Writers: Ethan S. Parker and Griffin Sheridan
Artist: Robert Quinn
Letters: John J. Hill
Cover: Ryan Stegman and Robert Quinn
Publisher: Image Comics 

Ratings:

Story: 4.4 Stars
Artwork: 4.6 Stars
Cover Artwork: 4.7 Stars
Dialogue: 4.1 Stars
Mechanics: 4.1 Stars
Editing: 4.1 Stars 

About the Book:

Rose is an eight year old girl with a vivid imagination. She lives with her mom, who is a waitress that is struggling to make ends meet. She doesn’t have many friends. To make up for this Rose has created an imaginary world that has her leading her stuffed animals into battle to defend the kingdom of Rosewood. One night the line between reality and make believe is blurred as an ancient evil returns with horrific consequences.

Reader’s Notes:

Kill Your Darlings #1 spoke to me. It may not have been as modern as 1995, but as a small child I was Rose. Dad and I lived with my grandparents on their 10 acre farm to keep the cost of rent down. The closest kid to us (that I knew of) lived about a mile away, and we weren’t especially close. My imaginary friends kept me company.

The parts of the farm that the horses weren’t in became my kingdom. I never named it like Rose did. I do remember drawing a map of it. There were some very large rocks that were the focal point of the kingdom. At various times these rocks were a spaceship, a mountain, and a crumbling bridge spanning over lava to get to a castle. I loved this world I lived in until we moved closer to town.

It could be a personal bias; but I found Rose to be a compelling character. She has a great imagination. She created a magical world that was a good coping mechanism for being lonely. Her mom can’t afford the cards she would need for a deck building game so she tried to get kids to join her world. The kids mentally labeled her as weird and declined. Rosewood became more important to her than reality as time passed.

I loved how Rose’s mother encouraged her to be so creative. She was exhausted from the reality of life but did her best to be up to speed with the daily events of Rosewood. More parents need to be like that, especially when their children are young. What may be a small thing to you is huge to a child. If you blow them off about what they feel is important when they’re younger they won’t talk to you about what really matters when they’re older.

I would be lying if I said Kill Your Darlings was a book that I have eagerly been anticipating the release of. It made it onto my radar the day it was released. My local comic book shop’s owner saw this one and threw it in my pull box because they thought it would be up my alley. They weren’t wrong.

Love it or hate it, Mr. Stegman and Mr. Quinn’s work on this cover evokes emotion. That is exactly what you want for the first issue of a new title. If people notice a cover it makes them curious about the story. I found this cover to be fascinating and eagerly told the clerk that I wanted this book. Then again, according to Lord Trekker, I liked some @&$?ed up $&@!.

Quinn’s great work didn’t stop with coloring the cover. The entire book is wonderfully drawn and colored. We get a feeling of just how real Rosewood is to our star character. I absolutely loved the cave.

Kill Your Darlings isn’t for the faint hearted. There are panels where things get very real when you have that lightbulb moment. If you can handle that this geek on a budget believes that you might be in store for one of the best titles to come out this year.

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I grew up loving all things geek. I started reading and collecting comics when I was 8. My personal collection has roughly 8,000 books in it. When I’m not doing something geek-related I love spending time with my amazing wife and kids, gaming, and working on cross stitch projects.

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