GRAPHIC NOVEL
Hellblazer
Lady Constantine

Author: Andy Diggle
Artists: Goran Sudzuka
Titan Books
RRP 5.99
ISBN 1 84576 263 0
Available 23 May 2006


It's 1785 England, and Johanna Constantine is a young woman with a knack for the impossible, a taste for the good life and a knowledge of the dark arts. When promises of wealth and power are dangled before her, she accepts a dangerous assignment for king and country to retrieve a mysterious ancient chest, now lost deep at sea. But hidden forces move against Johanna seeking the box for their own deadly purposes. In the frozen northern wastes, the quest becomes a desperate race against time with Johanna facing certain death and damnation if she loses. And a far worse fate if she wins...

Lady Constantine puts an interesting spin on the Hellblazer series. Johanna Constantine and her sidekick Mouse, are on a quest to make Constantine into a Lady, with land and a regular income from His Majesty's government. They want her to retrieve a box that has been buried at sea, but this is no ordinary quest.

The box that Constantine must retrieve is host to unspeakable evils that, if set lose, will lay waste to mankind. But, luckily, Constantine has a plan that, fingers crossed, will mean that the demons stay trapped, the King gets his treasure, and she gets to become a lady. But obviously it's not going to be as easy as all that. There are others interested in the box, and they will do whatever it takes to retrieve it.

Along the way, Constantine enlists the help of Swamp Thing. What power has she over him? Well, she knows the name of the person who killed his family. If he helps her acquire the box, she will give him the name he has desired for so long.

While I'm a big fan of the John Constantine series of Hellblazer comics, I really loved this spin-off creation. The writing is intelligent and the illustrations are impressive.

Whether you are a Hellblazer fan or not, this is a great stand alone story that will leave you wanting more.

Darren Rea

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