I decided to review something totally out of left field for me this week. This is basically Dynamite’s interpretation of their character Red Sonja as a ‘do-gooder’ type of kid and her quest to protect the land from ‘bullies and beasties.’ As you can tell by the title, this is an all-ages book but is clearly aimed at kids. That said, as with most forms of entertainment aimed at kids, I think parents or older siblings of the younger readers will get a kick out of some of L’il Sonja as well. The story starts out with Sonja roughing up some troll-looking guys to give back some kids their coins. She then ventures into a new village for her and comes to the realization that someone has come through and pillaged it. The townsfolk are outraged, some proclaiming that their kids have been kidnapped, some have had their crops stolen, and one guy is furious about his laundry being swiped (I thought this was pretty funny). Sonja gets everyone to calm down and says she’ll help them all out.
Sonja tries to put all the pieces together in this mystery: she realized redhead kids have been stolen, the stolen fabric was red, red peppers were taken, and Red Delicious apples were the kind that were picked (you get the idea). Sonja then vows to save the children and return the stolen goods. It gets personal since she’s a redhead herself. That night, she comes face to face with the culprit-a dragon named Ginger Dragon, King of the Crimson Collection. The dragon ends up imprisoning her with the other children and forces them to do tasks such as picking strawberries. The rest of the book involves Red Sonja trying to devise a plan to get the children back to their homeland. This being a children’s book, you can probably tell how it ends. There’s also a 2-page activity sheet included.
I think that this is a positive thing for a company to put out. I know there are a lot of people out there that think all comics are for little kids, but obviously that isn’t the case at all. There’s no way any young kid should be reading the normal Red Sonja books. The dragon in the story was saying that all things red are valuable and worth keeping-even though he’s a bad guy; this is still kind of a positive point. Sonja is a redhead too, and I’m sure kids get made fun of all the time for being ‘gingers’ still. I think this book could act as a moral lesson, a character to look up to, as well as a way for kids to get into comics, so I see it as a positive even though it may seem like an annoying fad to some.
Writer: Jim Zub Artist: Joel Carroll Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment Price: $3.99 Release Date: 1/29/14