Great story, horrible art,
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This review is from: Seventh Shrine (Graphic Novel Pb) (Paperback)
Somehow this book slipped in under my radar, and when I discovered in on Amazon last week I ordered it immediately. I have been a fan of Silverberg for 20 years, and the Majipoor tales are my absolute favorites. I was very excited to learn a little more about the history of Velalisier.
I wish I could rate the artwork and the writing separately. The story is great. I did think it was a little lackluster in terms of action, and it did feature a classic Silverberg lightning fast wrap-up, but I enjoyed it. It had interesting characters, a good storyline, and I was quite pleased with the additional information about Majipoori history and pre-settlement Piurivari life.
The artwork, however, is terrible. Not even deserving one star. Out of almost 100 illustrated pages, only 2 illustrations rated making it into the book-a gorgeous illustration of the water-kings on the sacrificial tables (althoughh still extrememly dark, the sea dragons are beautifully drawn) , and the illustration of the Danipuir. The rest of the illustrations were dark, some so dark they could barely be seen. The whole set of drawings seemed to be complsed mainly of heads floating in a black sea. Sure, the story of Velalisier is a dark one, but I always loved the idea of majipoor as a beautiful, sunlit planet, full of glorious sights. While a lot of the story takes place at night, I see no need to make the illustrations so black they can't be seen. It was actually a bit of a strain to make out exactly what some of the pictures were supposed to depict.
Another issue that I had with the drawings is perhaps a bit picky on my part, but It seems that the artist used exactly the same model for two of the characters-Lisamon Hultin, and the chief architect, Magadone Sambisa. Despite the obvious difference in size, the two women seem to be identical.
4 people are credited alongside Silverberg for this work-for adaptation, pencils, design, and editing.
It's a pity none of them actually bothered to look at the finished product before it went to print.