By Stjepan Šejić
The third chapter of Stjepan Šejićs original graphic series Sunstone (a.k.a. the antidote to your 50 Shades-created misconceptions about BDSM) has arrived. Now a bona fide New York Times Best-Seller the series continues to provide beautiful art, heartfelt storytelling, and some on-point questions about life, relationships and latex outfits.
Picking up from the emotional Volume Two and the revelations included there, we are treated to another new character and with her a new point of view in Anne. Šejićs use of Anne as an everyperson with no knowledge of the world and lifestyle that pretty much all the protagonists thus far have been proficient in is great and just goes to show you can’t rely on a google search for everything. Occasional shifts in focus from Lisa and Ally to their growing cast of friends in this chapter also serve to keep the story fresh without distracting from our leads either. The series also continues to mix its trademark humor alongside the more serous romantic arc, which is now in full swing as the ladies both begin to question if there is more to their growing dominant/submissive relationship. Despite having known the outcome from page one the journey to that outcome has become no less compelling over half-way there.
The art is as always outstanding with Šejić’s excelling at conveying just as much through the characters physical actions and facial expressions as their words. The layouts continue adding to the overall narrative and flow of the story without being too distracting despite not always being the standard ‘characters in a box’ format. The inclusion of Lisa’s fetish outfit montage in this volume only goes to further display the amount of passion and love Šejić clearly has for these characters and the tale he is telling. The new material that wasn’t part of the series’ first online DeviantArt run is also seamlessly added, and without a side-by-side, unlikely anyone could pick them out.
Regardless if you’re so vanilla that a weekday glass of wine and night-in with Netflix is considered wild or your Saturdays are spent with Miss Whiplash, this is a book worth reading. Full of smart, witty dialogue by attractively drawn yet believable characters within a sex positive, sometimes touching, sometimes funny, story then do yourself a favor and pick up Sunstone. Don’t worry too much about the safeword; you won’t want this to stop.