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The Pendulum    by Anne Elizabeth, Siya Oum & Mauro Salgado order for
by Anne Elizabeth
Order:  USA  Can
Sea Lion, 2011 (2011)
*   Reviewed by Ricki Marking-Camuto

Anne Elizabeth’s first graphic novel featuring Tia Stanton, Pulse of Power, was published through Dynamite. Sea Lion took over with The Pendulum, the second installment, which might confuse some as it is not really a standalone volume.

Monster-hunter Tia Stanton has had a build-up of magic powers that she needs to get rid of – it is ruining her love-life! However, during the ritual to remove the excess powers, a rogue mage ends up stealing all her powers. Tia daren't tell her boyfriend Witt for fear he will leave her on Earth while he and his brothers travel to an alien world where a civil war is brewing. Once there, Tia learns of the two factions and must take a stand against a corrupt government, using nothing but her wits.

The Pendulum has a few pitfalls that really detract from its reading. First, as mentioned above, it is not a standalone. Nowhere does it explain how Tia ended up with excess powers which is an event upon which most of the plot hinges. Also, many of the characters are not fully introduced, which does get the story moving quickly, but will leave new readers in a fog. Also, the narration changes from first person to third person and back a few times with no warning. The first person narration actually works well, but the third person narration has a tendency to tell the reader what the artwork is showing, making it stilted and redundant.

The artwork, though, is the high point of The Pendulum. While nothing spectatular, it is a solid American comic-book type of art. The bright colors and clean lines really bring the alien world to life. Overall, The Pendulum is very pleasing to the eye. Those who have already read Anne Elizabeth's Pulse of Power will probably enjoy seeing Tia Stanton's story continue. Those who haven't will definitely want to find out about Tia's life on Earth before journeying with her to an alien world in The Pendulum.

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