Another Castle Grimoire by Andrew Wheeler and Paulina Ganucheau (Illustrator)
Publisher: Oni Press
Release Date: February 28, 2017
Summary:We are thrilled to invite you on a journey of courage, friendship, and rebellion—Another Castle: Grimoire! This volume gathers all the issues from the hit comic book series centered on the adventures of Princess Misty of Beldora, whose courageous spirit leads to her capture, and ultimately, to a heroic adventure that spans two kingdoms.
Our tale begins when Princess Misty of Beldora, who longs for a more exciting life, gets more than she bargained for when she is captured by Lord Badlug, the ruler of the neighboring kingdom of Grimoire. He intends to marry her and conquer Beldora, leading the land into ruin and chaos. The people of Grimoire already suffer under his rule and desperately need a hero… luckily, Badlug has just kidnapped one! Together with the citizens of Grimoire and a certain bumbling prince, Misty must fight to protect her kingdom and free both realms from Badlug’s tyrannical rule. Misty is determined not to be another damsel in distress; and with her new friends to protect, she’ll discover just what it takes to be the hero of the story.
My Rating:★★★★☆ ½
My Thoughts: Another Castle Grimoire is packed with action, fantastic art, and spins classic fairy tale+ fantasy tropes!
The story centers around Princess Artemisia (Misty) of Beldora as her father prepares her for a marriage to prince Pete, however when she senses danger is lurking within her kingdom, she automatically begins conjuring up a plan. Taking her kingdom’s sword, The Leveler, she sets out for Grimoire with the only sword capable of destroying Badlug, ruler of Grimoire.
I loved Misty from page 1! She takes charge of her kingdom on her own and uses all her training to ensure her kingdom’s safety. While her father may not approve, its clear he only wants to keep her protected.
She questions and takes initiative to figure out answers on her own.
She soon discovers she is forced to be a prisoner of Badlug’s and must marry him, or her kingdom will perish. Prince Pete goes on a mission to rescue her, while encountering monsters along they way.
No matter what, she finds a way to ensure her kingdoms safety. Along the way she comes to know her attendants Fogmoth & Gorga (a gargoyle-human hybrid + a woman with Medusa-type abilites)
They forge a strong/beautiful friendship with Misty, though she doesn’t warm up to them right away. They come to trust Misty as she vows to escape Castle Grimoire and meet up with Prince Pete to get The Leveler and destroy Badlug.
I loved the twists/turns on tropes or classic hero story elements! The monsters the prince encounters, you expect to be ferocious, are friendly and kind. Everything from the characters to world, had me immersed into the story right away!
There’s a big emphasis on friendship and independence and I loved that so much. Throughout this story, there’s also an important/powerful message of acceptance and finding yourself.
The plot unfolds easily and you get a lot more backstory on Grimoire, Badlug, Misty’s mother and it all comes together in a way where it pieces together the story once you’ve reached the end.
However my only minor issue was the slow pacing around the middle and nearing the end.
Aside from Misty, Prince Pete, Gorga & Fogmoth were definitely my favorite characters! However, overall I loved each character (even Badlug!). They were all enjoyable to read about and while you don’t figure out everything about them, you learn enough to understand and sympathize.
Ever since reading Zodiac Starforce, I’ve really loved Paulina Ganucheau’s artwork! It’s colorful and bright! I love it!
I love that through the artowork, you see POC in power and characters with different body-types and there’s even GLBT-Rep.!
Another Castle Grimoire is a graphic novel with so much depth from its worlds to characters. The plot unfolds in ways you don’t expect, non-stop action, empowering female characters, and emphasis on friendship. There are so many fantastic elements!
Once I reached the end, I needed more! Hopefully there will be a Volume 2, because I adored everything about this story and I’m not ready to leave it just yet!