An inherited responsibility can be daunting, particularly when they were fierce women warriors ahead of you. Think of at least twenty wonder women who forged their path before you. They defeated a great enemy and brought light back into the world. But you have their strategies and ways in which they won, now all you have to do is carve your own way – it’s that simple and nearly impossible at the same time. Finn must do this now against an unforgiving landscape and fulfill her own destiny. Young and unsure she has an owl as her companion. And owls represent wisdom in most mythologies. Writer Danny McLaughlin’s ‘Solstice’ starts off with a slow burn telling the story of how the eternal night comes into being. Now it’s Finn’s turn. With artwork done by Nathan Donnell in melded and in stark tones of white, black and ice-blue, chapter one is subtitled winter for a reason. Think of those old Michael Moorcock covers for his science fiction, fantasy series with the protagonist Elric of MeInibone.
Still, a great deal is happening. Finn believes she has won, instead she’s pulled into a war she doesn’t clearly understand. Is she the catalyst to Ragnarak or a new Eden? Chapter two subtitled ‘Spring’ enters into the narrative and with that, shades of green. Green is the color of life. You get a sense of renewal. Still, this warm season brings its own troubles. It seems spring in all her sensuality wants to help bring in the oncoming storm. She strives to seek favor of the one who holds her destiny. The problem is she has no clue who that actually is. Gods are mercurial as well as impractical. And tempts Finn with a fairytale. For anyone who knows about real fairies, they’re the warning. They don’t help you find your prince. More likely they are more on the Rumpelstiltskin side of things who wants your first born for giving you the gift of spinning straw into gold. Or Maleficent who puts a princess in an eternal sleep for being slighted, to have that same girl awake in childbirth from the prince who raped her on his way home to his castle. You get the sense of Finn being in that sort of story and not the happily ever after type.
It would be wrong to underestimate Finn. She may not know her role in this journey, but she has all those stories to guide her. Of course there’s Peta who we see as an owl in chapter one. But he transforms. With each animal he evolves into there is a sense that he too is channeling the storyline, while dropping Easter eggs of what the reader is to expect next.
With everything there must be balance. For Finn her uncertainty is refreshing. She doesn’t have all the answers which makes you root for her. She may make mistakes but she is likable. With each season she finds herself and grows into a woman.
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