Thursday, July 11, 2013

Review: Book of DA

DA rules over the seas. DA is a good deity. DA keeps all the sea creatures happy and gifts them with harmonious lives. All DA asks in return is absolute devotion and servitude.

One day a diver crosses path with DA. At first the diver complies with every request DA makes. But one little gesture of defiance changes everything.

DA isn't happy, and if DA isn't happy the sea is a bad place to be in.

The Book of DA narrates the journey of the diver while he searches for DA, for the reason that made the seas turn on him and the way to turn it around and bring harmony back.

How is it?

The divers journey is an epic tale. Its almost like a biblical tale in a sense that you have a bigger than life deity that rules over all and the struggle of an insignificant and harmless being for a peaceful life. Its a story of struggle and innocence, of blind servitude and emotional slavery. But its also a story about something else. About something very human and very earthly.

Mike Mccubbins writes this story in two different ways. In half the story we follow the diver's silent journey. In the other half a priest like character narrates the story to an eager audience. This dichotomy of styles works very well. When the story is in diver mode it transmits a smooth tranquility, even when DA is present. If it were a song it would be Simon and Garfunkel's Sound of Silent. In priest mode the story picks up the pace. It also and gains a dramatic feel to it that greatly enhances the reading experience. If it were a song it would be Ben Harper's Power of the Gospel.

Matt Bryan is in charge of the art of the Book of DA. Question: Do you like high contrast B&W art? I do, very much in fact. For the most part its great. In fact it takes center stage every time the story hits diver mode. In this mode the story is almost only driven by the art. And it works very well. However I'm not very keen on the style Matt adopted for the priest mode. Its not bad, its just to as glorious as the diver mode one is.

My biggest complain is the format of the book. Its not in the standard US trade size. Its more like Disney sized books. Matt's art is somewhat minimalist, but I think it would benefit from a larger format. But it was probably a financial decision. We have to keep in mind that the printing that I got was funded by a Kickstarter project.

The Diver


Overall its Book of DA is a very good book. I liked it a lot. Its fresh and unique. A cool little story told in a very graphical format. I love indie books and this is no exception. Recommended.

It can be hard to get a hand on a copy of Book of DA, but you can hop on the authors online store and buy a copy.

Publisher: Big List of Dead People
Year: 2013
Pages: 148
Authors: Mike Mccubbins, Matt Bryan
ISBN: 9780615778501

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