From Aspen Comics, David Schwartz, Jonathan Marks, Siya Oum, John Starr, Teodoro Gonzalez, Josh Reed.

For those of you just joining the “Search for the Light” event, Sarin has just been made king.  He is merging magic and technology despite the pleas of his elders.

This is a story about more than just Sarin.  In case you doubt me learn right from the book, “Technology corrupts.  It distracts from the things that are important in life.  It is cold, hard and soulless.”

Now both this review and the comic were created with the help of computers, so technology isn’t all bad.  However in the hands of Sarin everything is bad.  Magic, technology, hell he could probably make bunny rabbits dangerous.  But here is the incredible trick that Schwartz, Marks and the team pull here.  They make Sarin sympathetic.

He is shown as a child with his family, for all the good and bad that family can bring.  Sarin’s quest for power is explained and damn if the Aspen Comics crew don’t pull off a Paradise Lost.

I should hate everything about Sarin.  He is the despair this comic is named for.  He sweeps in and changes everything, history and cooler heads be damned.  Yet there are sound reasons behind his decisions.  One way has been followed for far too long.  It is time to change things, and no one ever likes change.  No one likes the leader who has to make those hard changes either.

While reading this the reader is nearly swayed into Sarin’s camp.  “Give him a shot!”  “Let him try!”  “Stop being so mean!”  Why does (insert your least favorite 24 hour news channel here) always have to take the other side?!  All of this is going to make Sarin’s eventual horrible acts that much more difficult to handle.

I don’t care how bright the phoenix fire is, the Search for the Light is the gleaming beacon of summer events right now.