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Delliquanti, Blue – O Human Star Volume One

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O Human Star Volume One

So I just did a quick bit of research, and outside of a few shorts pieces in anthologies, it’s true: this is Blue’s first long comics series. Why did I feel the need to research this? Because it’s damned near flawless, and it will always be shocking to me when that’s true with anyone’s first try. Also, as I’m perpetually a day late and a dollar short, the third and final volume has been completed and should be coming out this year, so the story is over right as I’m getting into it. Ah well, I can still do my reviewers duty and get anybody who’s as constantly late as me on board. This is the story of Alastair Sterling, and it starts with him dying. Before you start making comparisons to Sunset Boulevard, no, he’s not dead for the whole story and narrating it. Well, he is dead. Ugh, I’m getting ahead of myself. He does die in the first few pages, true. But then he wakes up with his consciousness in the body of an extremely human-looking android and is told that this is because of his former assistant Brendan as he’s being driven to see him. Who’s driving him? Well, that ends up being a mystery, as he quickly learns that Brendan had nothing to do with this resurrection. Alastair was at the forefront of artificial intelligence technology before he died, and in the ensuing 16 years robots have become normalized and have their own rights. The bulk of this book is spent with Alastair trying to get a grip on this new reality, interspersed with flashbacks to show how the two of them met, how they researched their work and how they finally got it off the ground. Alastair also meets another synthetic life form, Sulla, whose personality was taken from his brain waves in one of Brendan’s failed attempts to bring Alastair back. Sulla, however, had requested to be a girl after her first few years, which raises all sorts of questions from Alastair. So how many mysteries are we up to? Mysterious benefactors, the questions about his robotic clone (not even close to the right term probably), how his relationship with Brendan is going to go after so long apart, a few more I’m definitely forgetting. So there’s all kinds of intrigue, but it’s also just so damned human. Sulla is a typical teenager, at least in temperament, and there’s the usual nervousness about trying to fit in with other teens, especially after a lifetime of home schooling has left her without many social graces. Alastair tries his best, but he’s clearly and consistently uncomfortable in this world. And Brendan’s collapse early on as he realized that this really was Alastair at his doorstep was devastating, as was his constantly walking on eggshells around Alastair and Sulla. I’m completely hooked and getting the second volume as soon as I wrap up this review, so expect a few words about that in the coming months. Maybe just in time for the third volume to be released so I can be at least mildly current? I live in hope. But yeah, in case I wasn’t clear: get this book as soon as you can. I guarantee that you’ll be hooked after the first few pages. $25