Thursday, 24 May 2018

Paper Girls Volume 2 by Brian K Vaughan and Cliff Chiang

Paper Girls Volume 2 written by Brian K Vaughan and illustrated by Cliff Chiang continues the story begun in Volume 1, which I read after it was shortlisted for a Hugo Award last year. I really enjoyed the first volume, so I took the opportunity to pick up volumes 2 and 3 when visiting a comic book shop recently. This review contains spoilers for volume 1.

After surviving the strangest night of their lives in the Cleveland suburb of Stony Stream, intrepid young newspaper deliverers Erin, Mac, and Tiffany find themselves launched from 1988 to a distant and terrifying future... the year 2016.

What would you do if you were suddenly confronted by your 12-year-old self? 40-year-old newspaper reporter Erin Tieng is about to find out in this action-packed story about identity, mortality, and growing older in the 21st century.

This picked up the story right where it left off and, even though it's been a while since I read the first volume, I didn't have trouble getting back into the story, even if I didn't remember all the details. This is an ongoing story so this volume just covers the next arc of story rather than coming to any final conclusions. I think it did a good job containing a linked story with obvious entry and exit points.

The story is set mainly in 2016 and follows the twelve-year-old paper girls from 1988 as they try to work out what's happening and navigate the unfamiliar world of their future. Meanwhile, for reasons related to their time travelling, a lot of bad stuff is also going on, which forms the backdrop to their story. (Why does all the pop culture love giant tardigrades, btw?) This instalment doesn't raise as many questions as the first one did, but that's partly because we have some grounding in the world now and also because some of the same questions come up again.

I am continuing to really enjoy Paper Girls and I am definitely invested in the story. I've already got Volume 3 in hand and I plan to keep on reading as long as the comics keep on coming. If you enjoyed Stranger Things but would have liked more science fiction rather than horror, this may be the comic for you. That said, I didn't actually like Stranger Things at all, and I love this series, so the similarities may end at the part where the 80s are involved. I can't think what else it's comparable to though.

4.5 / 5 stars

First published: 2016, Image Comics
Series: Paper Girls volume 2 (of 4 so far), containing issues #6–10
Format read: Trade paperback
Source: Real life comic book shop

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