Foreword Reviews

Starred Review:

War Mother

A striking and memorable new heroine emerges in the pages of Valiant’s War Mother.

Van Lente and his colleagues create a rich, futuristic, postapocalyptic world in which Ana, better known as War Mother, leads her people in a quest for survival among a myriad of threats. War Mother’s sentient sniper rifle operates via an AI program named Flaco; he’s a crucial element in the story, providing not just an opportunity for dialogue during War Mother’s otherwise solo missions but also someone to challenge her sometimes single-minded outlook. Ana deals with complications arising from morality, her family responsibilities, and her duty to her people—all while kicking some serious butt as needed.

As with the best science fiction, commentary on our own society is featured throughout, but with a healthy sense of humor rather than heavy-handedness. For example, when a group called the Urbanites threatens but is eventually driven off, it’s said, “They’re gentrifying elsewhere.”

War Mother compiles the character’s first comic book appearance in 4001 A.D. : War Mother #1 and issues 1-4 of the War Mother comic series. The book’s artwork is stunning—polished, colorful, and dynamic, creating a convincing and utterly immersive future environment. Combining the raw excitement of pulp adventure with thoughtful extrapolation and invention, the story collected here is complete and satisfying but leaves open the possibility of additional adventures. With luck, War Mother will return to shepherd her people through other future threats.

Reviewed by Peter Dabbene

Disclosure: This article is not an endorsement, but a review. The publisher of this book provided free copies of the book to have their book reviewed by a professional reviewer. No fee was paid by the publisher for this review. Foreword Reviews only recommends books that we love. Foreword Magazine, Inc. is disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

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