Crogan’s Loyalty original hardcover graphic novel
Writer/Artist/Cover artist: Chris Schweizer
Editors: James Lucas Jones & Jill Beaton
Publisher: Oni Press
Price: $14.99 US
This is the third in what’s planned as a long series of graphic novels, and it stands out as the very best in the run thus far. It’s a testament to writer/artist Chris Schweizer’s storytelling ability that he’s able to grab my attention and never let go with these pieces of historical fiction, as history’s never been one of my greatest areas of interest. But he does an excellent job of conveying history — a small corner of the American Revolution in this case — and what impressed me more was how well balanced his approach to the subject matter is. The historical plot isn’t a matter of the good guys versus the bad guys. There are multiple sides, all with their own moral justifications for their actions. Mind you, the open-minded approach to the history wouldn’t be nearly as compelling if the whole story wasn’t built on a strong foundation of a relationship between siblings that’s thoroughly relatable. Ultimately, the “loyalty” referred to in the book’s title flows from the two central protagonists’ loyalty to their cause, to their moral centres and, most importantly, their loyalty to one another despite their differences. This is a pitch perfect graphic novel, combining adventure, drama, a sense of irreverence and a familial dynamic that allows readers to connect to the extreme circumstances of war.