Review – Tears of the Dragon Vol. I

Tears of the Dragon Vol. 1 is told from the perspective of an old grandfather telling his two grandkids the tale of love, dragons, kings and curses as they trek through a forest on their way to a local town. The story takes place in a medieval setting and revolves around the trials of Lord and eventually King Torvuld and his rise to power.

As you can tell from the presence of dragons there are curses and magical powers involved and this story goes from bright and cheerful Saturday morning cartoon fare to dark and frightening.

The grandfather is never really identified in this volume but he's obviously a well-traveled man to have such epic stories at his disposal. His two grandchildren are at times in disbelief, scared or completely enthralled with his story as they go on their pilgrimage and their reactions make the small interludes in between the tale bearable.

Essentially, the King of the Realm is dying and has no heir. Lord Torvuld has revived an old ritual which stated that the new king was to hunt and slay a dragon as a part of the coronation process. The only problem is that the dragon he slew was the beloved of another dragon. This is an interesting twist in a story I haven’t seen before- dragons can be in love? I thought they were solitary creatures but in this story that is not the case.

After the slaying things seem to go well for Torvuld. He becomes king and his primary rival – the king’s cousin Lord Thorngill – is appeased for losing the throne with generous lands and titles. From here though the story turns dark, starting with the birth of Yordania and Lucitus.

Each child chooses a different path; however, both seem to be driven by the absence of their important and busy fathers. The King is held away from his daughter by grief and the Lord by his constant need to be on the battlefield. On top of that a mysterious man appears with powers to cure what no other healer can cure and becomes a close advisor of the king while the treachery of a castle nursemaid sheds light on many things.

In addition to this it turns out that the old man traveling with his grandchildren Cayla and Callum are more than just a means to create a narrator for the story, they end up having their own misadventures at the end of the volume. At the end of the volume King Torvuld, Lord Thorngill, their children Yordania and Lucitus and our narrator with his grandchildren all are on divergent paths where fate seems to have sent them.

The story is written by Tyler James with art by Koko Amboro and is published by ComixTribe. I love the range of colors used and obviously feel that the book is a value coming in at a hefty 58 pages. Tears of the Dragon Vol. I feels similar to Mouse Guard: Legends of the Guard in format, only instead of multiple stories there's one story continuing throughout.

It also reads like a graphic novel and has the twists and turns of A Song of Fire and Ice – or Game of Thrones if you’ve recently discovered the series on HBO – with betrayal and mystical creatures returning to haunt the main characters. Everything about the book is solid but the writing is what really drew me in to the story.

I’m intrigued to know how it will all come together. If you like good, campfire storytelling mixed with colorful art and dragons, swords, sorcery, betrayal and love, then I have a feeling you'll like Tears of the Dragon Vol. I

Happy reading!