Saga, Volume Eight, by Fiona Staples and Brian K. Vaughn, was published in 2017. It includes Chapters Forty-Three through Forty-Eight.
The first line of dialogue is: “Howdy, Stranger.”
I am going to give only a vague review of Volume Eight, to avoid spoilers for those of you who have not read the first seven volumes. It’s a continuous, ongoing story, and going into the specific plot at this point will give away what’s happened in the story.
Saga is a story in which no one is safe from harm. Characters we’ve grown to love can die on any page. For this reason, I won’t even tell you who’s in this volume, aside from Hazel, Alana, and Marko.
As the cover art and the opening dialogue suggest, the story takes a rather Western turn. It is still, however, a story of Science Fiction Fantasy.
Hazel, the baby who was born on the first page of the first chapter, is now a six-year old girl. She still occasionally narrates the story from a future time. She’s filled with wonder and curiosity, and she’s seen a lot in her life.
Hazel’s mother, Alana (a deserter from the Landfall army), and her father, Marko (a military prisoner from Wreath, whom Alana had been assigned to guard), are still fugitives. They are being hunted by the wizards of Wreath, the robot royalty of Landfall, bounty hunters, and journalists.
Saga, Volume Eight feels somehow darker than the previous volumes. There are scenes of torture, and discussions of abortion, and frank discussions of gender identity. Saga is a very adult comic.
I’ve read other people’s reviews that compare Saga with Game of Thrones. I think that’s a great comparison. Saga is a complex story, filled with politics, sex, violence, and naked people. Above all, it’s the fascinating characters that keep me in this series.
The quality of the story and the artwork has not diminished.
I’ve bought all eight volumes, so, obviously, I love it.
Why I chose this book:
There was never any doubt in my mind that I’d choose this book. The 2017 Reading Challenge contained a category named “The first book in a series you haven’t read before”. I’d had my eye on Saga, Volume One, on the shelf in Phoenix Comics and Games, for a while, and the Reading Challenge was my incentive to finally buy it. I loved Volume One, and over the next several months, I was stopping into Phoenix to buy volumes Two, Three, Four, and Five. In early December, I walked into Phoenix and bought volumes Six and Seven. I was then caught up with the story, until Volume Eight came out. Saga, Volume Eight was published on December 27, 2017, and the 2018 Reading Challenge contained a category named “The next book in a series you started”. It was a perfect fit.