It has been far too long, 8 months to be exact, since the previous issue of this series was published, but it was finally made available (digitally, at least) last Wednesday.
Writer Blake Northcott and artist Kelsey Shannon (along with letterer Eric Weathers) return to bring us this third episode in the saga of Norah Karlsson, a Canadian teenager who fell through an icy lake after a car accident with her father and woke up about 12 centuries in the past in ancient Vinland. After meeting some helpful locals, Norah discovers that her only hope for returning to her own time involves capturing the song of a magical water spirit that exists in the ocean. This is a task that others have tried and perished while attempting to accomplish before, but Norah believes that she can succeed because she doesn’t have to actually capture the spirit, she can just use her smartphone to record the spirit’s song. But the problem is that her phone’s battery is running out of power, so Norah needs to hurry before it’s too late.
This issue takes off running, literally, as Norah, accompanied by two companions who volunteered to guide her, Astrid, a brave young archer, and Nando, a braver than he has a right to be warrior, is making her way through the forest trying to reach the beachhead where a boat that can take her through the ocean to the water spirit is docked. They’re being chased by spear-throwing Vikings, have to dodge quicksand, and try not to wake a giant troll along the way.
Once again, Blake manages to fill the story with just the right mix of action and suspense, as the stakes for poor Norah keep getting higher, along with lighter moments of humor such as when she tries to explain the concepts of selfies and Youtube to her primitive companions. And she also shows her nack for writing dramatic plot-twists, as the issue takes a surprising turn in the “third act”, which takes the story in an unexpected direction and leaves you wondering what the heck is going to happen next? And all of it is skillfully illustrated by Kelsey, making this a story that is sure to hook any reader. It was a long time coming, but Norah’s Saga #3 is worth the wait.
Chacebook rating: FIVE STARS
Note: In addition to the lead 22-page story, this issue also includes a 7-page preview of The Saints, an upcoming series from Allegiance Arts & Entertainment that is written by Patrick Stiles (creator of Norah’s Saga) and drawn by Christian Rosado).
Categories: BLAKE NORTHCOTT