From Danielle Paige, the New York Times best-selling author of Stealing Snow, comes a Mera and Aquaman origin story that explores Mera's first steps on land as well as her first steps as a hero or a villain, forcing her to choose to follow her heart or her mission to kill. Mera is teenage royalty, heir to the throne of Xebel, the other not-so-lost colony under the sea. But Mera is destined to wear a different crown, that of Atlantis. When the inhabitants of Xebel plot to overthrow their homeland of Atlantis, Mera is sent to kill the heir to the throne, Arthur Curry. As the unrest between their colonies grows, Mera and Arthur unexpectedly fall in love...will Arthur Curry be the king at Mera's side in Atlantis, or will he die under her blade? Mera by Danielle Paige is an astonishing story that explores themes of duty, love, heroism and freedom, all through the eyes of readers' favorite undersea royalty.
Solid introduction to Mera, an underrated hero
Mera: Tidebreaker is the first in DC's new DC Ink line, and with Aquaman's recent release, it's not surprise this was chosen to launch the line. Tidebreaker follows Mera, the later queen of Atlantis, as a 16-year old princess warrior, ready to fight for her people. When her father and intended start making choices without her input or consideration, she decides to take matters into her own hands by going after Arthur, the Atlantis heir living on land. But when they meet, she discovers that he's not what she thought he was. He's actually kind and generous, and appears to know nothing about his gifts. She must decide if killing him is right or if they can work together to bring peace.
What I Liked:
Mera- My knowledge of Mera is limited, but I've always been interested in her. This story does a fantastic job of introducing readers to her personality and dedication to her home. She has a realistic emotional arc of figuring out how to make a stand, even when the consequences may not be in her favor.
The world-building- Though we don't learn all the intricacies of Xebel and Atlantis's history, there is just enough to make you feel familiar with the world and the general political relations. I could easily see readers grabbing as many stories set in the two kingdoms as they can after reading Mera.
What Left Me Wanting More:
The coloring- The color scheme is mostly blues and greens, with Mera's red hair being the most striking color. While this worked really well in the underwater scenes, it felt awkward in the parts Mera is on land.
Secondary characters- I love Mera taking center stage, but the secondary characters, Arthur in particular, feel very flat in comparison and lacked depth. This particularly hurts the romance, as Arthur doesn't make for an intriguing love interest.
While the secondary characters and romance left something to be desired, Mera herself ultimately makes this graphic novel a fun splash, perfect for those new to the Atlantis universe.