By Kevin Hoskinson
From Lion Forge Comics comes “Haphaven,” a witty, smart and super entertaining book filled with adventure, bravery, and superstition. It’s all packaged in a story that is akin to Alice in Wonderland with its sense of wonder and danger.
Learning from her father the superstitions of the world, young Alex Mills is a teenager who does anything she can to avoid a jinx. One day, she steps on a crack and breaks her mothers back. To save her mom, Alex must follow the rainbow and travel to the mysterious world of Haphaven, a world where all of Earths superstitions gain their power. Following a trusty leprechaun named Hubbub, she must retrieve the one thing that can save her mom, a lucky rabbit’s foot.
Alex soon finds that this task is more difficult than it seems when she learns that a hideous monster called The Jinx protects the foot. Add to that a forest full of trees that will knock back if you don’t knock on them first, a girl named Penny who doesn’t like to be picked up, and a black cat who should never be crossed, she soon realizes that she is in over her head. But with courage and bravery, she must step up and find the key to saving her mom, no matter what the odds.
Created by Norm Harper and Louie Joyce, Haphaven is one heck of a book. The story is one of the most exciting and unique stories I have ever read. It’s based on superstitions that so many of us are familiar with, but never really thought about where they came from. The story starts a bit slow, but it picks up fairly quickly and never lets up, all the way up to its anxiety-inducing climax. I found myself constantly awaiting what was going to happen next, mainly because you get so invested in Alex’s journey that it’s impossible not to.
The world of Haphaven itself is something to behold. It has a fascinating history, one that you learn about as the story progresses. It has a great sense of wonder and danger. Much like Alice in Wonderland, Alex is surrounded by characters and things that are wonderous and mysterious, things she never thought could exist in any world. She is continuously discovering something new around every corner but must learn to ground herself and stick to the mission at hand.
I love the artwork. It’s different and fits perfectly with the story. It’s bright and colorful when it needs to be, but dark and dreary as well. It’s very well done and adds to the sense of wonder that is experienced while reading this book.
Haphaven is one of the most imaginative stories I have read. It’s got everything: adventure, danger, drama, heart and lots of humor. It’s a bundle of everything in one package. I highly recommend checking it out when you get the chance; you won’t regret it.
Rating: 9.0 out of 10