Every once in a great while I stumble upon a book or comic that truly amazes me. Whether it is the artwork or the storyline, sometimes I am simply flabbergasted. Strange Attractors has made it onto this short list. I read it the same afternoon that it arrived but found myself reading it again the next day. I’ve already loaned it out to a friend, something I seldom do, because the graphic novel is just that good and needs to be shared with the world.
Combining science fiction and mathematics, the story revolves around complexity theory as it applies to the metropolis of New York City. Basically, this means that every small action creates a chain reaction that affects the greater whole. The main character, Heller Wilson, is a young man working towards his postgraduate degree on this very concept. He seeks out a former professor from Columbia University, a Doctor Spencer Brownfield, who was a known expert on the subject before leaving his teaching position under mysterious circumstances.
A phenomenon in which a minor change in circumstances can cause a large change in outcome.
If you had the ability to manipulate the outcomes of several small events to prevent something on a larger scale from happening, would you do it? In the new graphic novel, Strange Attractors, the themes of chaos theory are explored and examined.
The Grand Duke Written by Yann
Illustrations by Romain Hugault
Edited by Paul Morrissey
Translation by Edward Gauvin
Letters by Thomas Mauer Archaia Entertainment
Release Date: November 14, 2012
Cover Price $24.99
The solicit for Archaias’ new European import The Grand Duke describes the book as “A Romeo-and-Juliet story set against WWII aerial dogfights.”
If that does not immediately grab your attention, then we’re looking for entirely different stories in our comics, you and I. Well, it got my attention and while that’s maybe not a 100 percent honest way of pitching the story, it got it’s foot in the door for what turned out to be an astonishingly great read.
Set along the Eastern front beginning in 1943, Luftwaffe Oberleutnant (Read: German [Read: NAZI!]) Adolph Wulf and Comrade Lilya (Read: Commie!) of the dreaded 588th known as the “Night Witches” – an all women battalion that, apparently, was a thing – have grown rather disillusioned with their situations in the war. Wulf, rather palatably, despises the Third Reich and fights solely for love of his homeland and motherless daughter. Lilya is realizing that even in Stalin’s socialist paradise there are still glass ceilings for women even after they’ve held bloody and terrible front lines down.