The template has been established. There will be two big fights and one lot of heavy exposition per volume. Promising characters that were well established in the first book will be completely ignored or given a single page appearance.
The previous book was all action. This volume is mostly action but little things like characterisation, good dialogue, humour and plot are slowly being slotted in. There are a lot of talking heads but the dialogue feels natural. Although heavily recap laden it does give the characters a little more depth and likability.
We are also introduced to the big plot and it is big with a capital B with some universe spanning gravitas. We have left the personal, emotional journey of one man behind and are firmly in the epic space opera territory. This is undoubtedly a shame as the initial premise could have been a really mature tale. Having said that, it does execute action and spectacle very well. It is also an effortless and graceful read and will be over before you know it.
The art is just as attractive with lovely colours and pretty faces to look at but the high polish of the previous instalments has subsided. The digital tricks like motion blur are there but used sparingly and intelligently.
It is a very good natured book with humour to make you smile. There are lots of media references including X-files, Close Encounters and Jaws that you will also enjoy spotting. This isn’t the book it was, this isn’t the book it should have been, but it is still a great book and I am already looking forward to the next part. Thumbs Up.
Tomorrow: Crossed Volume 3: Psychopath – David Lapham