Wednesday, 24 March 2010

A Thousand Faces #0

I recently ordered #'s 0 and 1 of A Thousand Faces, 'the quarterly journal of superhuman fiction' (link). They have released 12 volumes in all, so they must be doing something right, I am sure.

I finished reading #0 this morning, and I have to say that I was impressed with the content. I have been reading quite a lot of short-form superhero, supervillain, and superhuman fiction of late, enough to recognise that quality and execution can vary quite a lot. For me, all of the stories in A Thousand Faces #0 were of a decent standard, which is more than I would say about some more high-profile collections (I am thinking of Who Can Save Us Now? in particular here). That was a pleasant surprise. What was also surprising was the diversity of the pick of stories. Character pieces jostle with action-oriented stuff, alongside comedy, horror and more besides. A pretty eclectic collection, then. And in each case, the writers have written to the format, offering stories that work within the short-form.

After reading #0 I can confidently say I am going to pick up each every volume as it becomes available, and to fans of superhero prose featuring original characters, then I suggest you could do worse than check it out. As I understand things, the latest issue will always be available free to download (#11 as I write this). So for those who are interested, perhaps follow the link above or to the side - you may find that you are glad you did so.

And for non-comic book fans wondering about the '#0' rather than starting with #1? Well for a couple of decades now comics have frequently employed using #0 issues to present origin stories, and since this was the start of a new venture laying down the template for the journal, then that seems quite fitting.

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