An elderly king removed from the world of commoners. A palace cook roped into playing assassin. A princess confined to her rooms. A royal fiancé trapped between his duty to his king and that which he owes to his future bride. All of these collide in a story that is part fairy-tale, part contemporary dysfunctional family.
White’s debut graphic novel is quiet and methodical, but almost too much so at times. He does an excellent job of setting up a feeling of claustrophobia, though. All of his characters are trapped in some way, locked into lives they don’t like and can’t seem to change. In one scene, the king makes his future son-in-law Wilson promise to never leave him, “Promise you’ll stay here and protect me forever.” Readers can see the reluctance on Wilson’s face and understand that he feels as though he has no other option but to stay and serve, his own personal interests shoved to the side. But Wilson is the easiest character to read. Others are harder to identify with, especially the princess….