The Rise of Aurora West: 01/16/15
The Rise of Aurora West by Paul Pope is a prequel or companion piece to Battling Boy and The Death of Haggard West, two graphic novels I haven't read. I read book three as part of the CYBILs.
So bear in mind this "review" is one written on an incomplete understanding of oeuvre. Many of my objections probably stem from those gaps. According to the blurb, it's actually a prequel, but I have a feeling that most of the stage was set with the previous books.
Aurora West is learning how to fight along side her father to defend the city from monsters. They live in a city that at one time was normal — meaning it was like our world, full of mundane routine, various forms of entertainment, and things in between. Now though, the city is in ruins and over run with monsters. Therefore Aurora's life is one of training and fighting and wondering what happened to her mother.
The latter half of the book is focused on Aurora trying to track down the truth behind her mother's death. In this regard, I was reminded of Generator Rex, where Rex is trying to understand what happened to parents and how their research was responsible for the event that changed the world.
Now Aurora's superhero / scientist father is apparently Acropolis's best bet for defeating the monsters. But he's presented as a bit of a blowhard. Maybe he's trying to protect his daughter, or maybe he's just an ass. His barrel shape character design and tendency to lecture, though, made me think of Jack Fenton (Danny Phantom).
Anyway, I wasn't blown away with the female hero in training. It was disappointing that her reason for becoming on was because of her mother's tragic death. That's too often the motivation for young women to rise above the "gender norms" to become something strong or heroic.