cover image Lost on Planet Earth

Lost on Planet Earth

Magdalene Visaggio, illus. by Claudia Aguirre. Dark Horse, $19.99 paper (136p) ISBN 978-1-5067-2456-0

In Richmond, Va., in 2381, Basilisa “Basil” Miranda, who is Afro-Latinx and closeted, has structured her life around becoming a Captain of the Interplanetary Fleet. But the entrance exam question “What makes you happy?” sparks a crisis that prompts Basil to run: from her one-time dreams, and her white childhood friend and primary romantic interest Charlotte, who bottled feelings for Basil to enlist alongside her. As Basil’s parents—whose “whole family has served in the Interplanetary Fleet going back 200 years”—worry about her future, Basil befriends alien Velda and anti–Star Union radical Ethne, who show her the cost of the seemingly utopian society built by humans and the Star Union. Originally a five-issue comiXology series, Visaggio’s (Vagrant Queen) Star Trek–inspired drama condemns assimilationist policies and the Star Union’s exploitative recruitment strategy (post-service, enlistees live outside the economy). Expressive, luminescent full-color art stuns as Aguirre (Hotel Dare) creates vivid sequences of state-sanctioned violence. Though a sudden shift of perspective dominates the final chapter, Basil’s journey—which takes her from Earth to the stars—offers readers earnest encouragement to search for their place in the universe. Front matter includes an author’s note. Ages 17–up. (Aug.)