cover image The Wake

The Wake

Scott Snyder and Sean Gordon Murphy. DC/Vertigo, $24.99 (256p) ISBN 978-1-4012-4523-8

The apocalypse gets a watery spin in this breathless graphic novel from writer Snyder (Batman: The Court of Owls, American Vampire) and illustrator Murphy (Joe the Barbarian). Marine biologist Lee Archer, reluctantly working alongside her enemies in the government oil industry, comes face-to-face with an awakened species of homicidal mermen. They look like the creature from the black lagoon, swarm by the thousands, and have a taste for humans. Two hundred years later, Leeward, another spiky young woman with authority issues, is selling black-market mermen heads in the flooded ruins of America when she hears what sounds like an ancient recording from Archer. The ragtag new government is just as problematic as the old one, leaving it to Leeward and her trusty dolphin pal, Dash, to solve the centuries-old problem on their own. Snyder’s story is a ripsnorter from start to finish, heavy on the action and quips. The threads keeping the settings together barely hold, but Snyder’s punchy style and Murphy’s detail-dense pages and Tank Girl–style art are highly satisfying. Agent: Jennifer Lyons (Dec.)