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Book of Death: The Fall of X-O Manowar #1

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By Robert Venditti, Clayton Henry, and Andrew Dalhouse

“A man’s daughter is his heart. Just with feet, walking out in the world.”
― Mat Johnson

Each year since Valiant Entertainment re-launched in 2012, the publisher has provided a massive event involving much of the Valiant Universe. Harbinger Wars, Armor Hunters, (The Valiant is honorable mention here) and now Book of Death. In the tradition of 1992’s Rai #0, Valiant Entertainment sought to tell readers the end of what will be with Book of Death #1 through #4, but further expanded greatly on this with four one-shot titles which focused on the finial days of the publisher’s most prominent major characters:

Book of Death: The Fall of Bloodshot #1

Book of Death: The Fall of Ninjak #1

Book of Death: The Fall of Harbinger #1

Book of Death: The Fall of X-O Manowar #1

To say that these books have been anything less than 120% incredible would be an understatement and a outright lie! All four of these books delivered. All four of these books changed everything. All four of these books are must-read stories that Valiant fans and readers deserve and more.

Writer Robert Venditti (X-O Manowar #1 through #41 and beyond) tells yet another story with Book of Death: The Fall of X-O Manowar #1 that no one might have expected, but certainly a story that has the potential to impact events for many years to come. Anyone reading this book will be unable to deny it’s significance, and the future that it creates for stories yet to be told. This is NOT a story without direction; Venditti knows exactly what he is doing, and incorporates multiple plot elements and characters from throughout the 41 issue history of X-O Manowar to great effect. The fate of King Aric of the Visigoth, the X-O armor (Shanhara), Queen Saana of Loam, and more are all seen in this amazing story. It is all well written, and explained.

(Speculator Warning!!!: Book of Death: The Fall of X-O Manowar #1 features the first appearance of a new character that is potentially huge, if not also highly significant! Consider yourself notified if you care about such things. There are four covers for this book; Cover A (Nord Regular), Cover B (Segovia Regular), Cover C (Lee 1:10 Variant), and Cover D (Bernard 1:20 Variant)).

Artist Clayton Henry’s artwork is some of the absolute cleanest in the industry today. He makes it easy for colorists Andrew Dalhouse to work with, which is by no means meant to take nothing away from Dalhouse’s work on the book. Henry’s understanding of both perspective and detail are evident as ever, and as it has been said many time before, you really should look at his original art up-close and in person if given the chance to truly appreciate its genius. Dalhouse colors work well with Henry’s clean lines, and are a perfect combination for this book which both looks and feels like an X-O Manowar book should look and feel.

If you are a fan of X-O Manowar, this book will give you both closure and hope for what is to come next. Book of Death: The Fall of X-O Manowar #1 was a complete privilege to read, and everything fans and/or readers could want and more. Additionally, it was announced at the Diamond Retailer Summit 2015 that Valiant Entertainment will release all four of “The Fall of…” one-shot titles in one trade paperback titled Book of Death: The Fall of the Valiant Universe later this year.

BOD-XO_COVER-A_NORD

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