Saturday, November 6, 2010
Day 6, Holiday Reviewarama The Secret History Volume 1 from Archaia
The Secret History Volume 1
Writer Jean-Pierre Pecau
Artists Igor Kordey, Leo Pilipovic, Goran Sudzuka, Geto, Carole Beau, Manchu, Olivier Vatine
Firstly letting my bias be known, I am a sucker for alternative history, and have degrees in history from two different Universities. So I am likely in the perfect target audience of this work.
Let me say, this is a work of extraordinary research, because in order for it to succeed, which it does, there has to be a verisimilitude. That is, there needs to be a feeling that the history being changed from and to, is real. If you feel for even a moment that what was being changed was in fact not real to begin with, then you are left with historical fiction instead of alternate history. Alternate history relies upon the ability to let the reader see things he/she knows to be true, and change that truth, thus achieving a mental connection. I am not familiar with any other work Jean-Pierre Pecau has done. All I know is that this work was perfect. I saw the changes, through the eyes of the main characters, and they resonated with me.
The target audience is someone who likes historical works, and can see what the changes are. If someone has not a speck of knowledge of human events and history, this is still a very nicely done work, full of beauty and fine detail. But for the work to be so striking, a love of what is changed is needed.
There isn’t anything here that doesn’t work, just perhaps some less effective than others for certain readers. We aren’t all born of similar parents and have similar DNA of course.
From the publisher
“Four immortal brothers and sisters are entrusted with ivory cards in the dawn of prehistory by a dying shaman, and told never to use the cards together. Four immortal brothers and sisters, four archons, leaping through time, consumed in an epic struggle to influence and shape the history of Western civilization. From Moses' challenge to the Pharaoh to the origin of the Grail myth; from the Pope's extermination of the Cathars to Nostradamus' travels in Italy; from the Spanish Armada and the Great Fire of London to Napoleon's conquest of Egypt; and finally to the Angel of Mons appearing over the trenches of World War I. A secret occult history of the world told in seven chapters”