Review: “Canto, Vol 1: If I Only Had a Heart” by David M. Booher & Drew Zucker

Canto’s people have been enslaved on Arcana for generations, working tirelessly to provide fuel for the furnaces below the area. Their hearts have been replaced with clocks, slowly ticking away their time. They are forbidden to have a name, forbidden to care for one another, forbidden to love. Yet Canto is in love with a girl and when the slavers damage her clock beyond repair, he starts on a quest to find her heart. As he travels further through the world he has never seen before, can Canto overcome all that awaits, with the help of the unexpected allies he finds along the way?

Inspired by “The Wizard of Oz” and “Dante’s Inferno”, “Canto” provides us with a whimsical and modern twist on an otherwise standard tale of a knight embarking on an adventure to save the princess. With a fresh spin added to it, the storyline is grasping, and the somewhat darker themes explored in it are done tactfully, with humorous breaks in between. The characters are charming and our brave, little hero is one that a lot of us will be able to relate to, in one way or another. Both the artwork and dialogue are complementing nicely and are used effectively to convey timeless ideas, values, and virtues. I will be looking forward to reading Volume 2, whenever it is out. I enjoyed this first one tremendously, however, I think there is potential to improve upon the world development and key scene delivery within this series.

I would like to thank Paper Lanterns Journal for sending me the book for review to be included in their second issue. I’d highly recommend you check them out over at their website, the magazine is filled with amazing creative writing pieces and features.

Thank you for reading the review, and let me know what you think down in the comment section!

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