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Better Red: RED DREAD, review by Victor Gischler

RED DREAD, comic book by Matteo Strukul and Alessandro Vitti. New bloody adventure of Mila Zago, the killer avenging former star of The Ballad of Mila, debut novel by Matteo Strukul.

Here We are guys: an amazing introduction, written by pulp-hardboiled master and legendary comic book screenwriter Victor Gischler, who writes about Italian Comic-Book Red Dread, Matteo Strukul and Alessandro Vitti’s work. You can’t miss it… we are sure that this graphic novel will be available across USA pretty soon.

Your SUGARPULP CREW.

Better Red: RED DREAD

How to start an introduction? The “call to action” is often a good strategy. Buy this book. BUY IT! Buy copies for all your friends and neighbors. Buy a copy for the worst person you know. It will turn his life around and transform him into a saint. It will save endangered tigers. It will cure cancer in endangered tigers. It will find the tigers good jobs with health benefits. Too far? Yes probably. But you should still buy it.

And now you are waiting for some kind of evidence to support the claim you should buy this and read it and enjoy it and talk about it with friends over a steaming cup of java – and rightly so. Okay. Hang on. Fine. I’m going to talk about the writer first.

When I first met Matteo Strukul, it was in the Turin airport. Air France had lost my luggage. It was December and we were heading into the snowy Alps to promote my novel at a festival. It had just been published in Italy, and it was Matteo’s job to take me around and make sure I made all of my interviews and appointments and didn’t fall down in the snow and die. He was good at his job. Matteo was – and is – full of enthusiasm and raw energy, and I’d be nowhere fast in Italy without his efforts. In fact, he put such energy and passion into promoting the work of other writers, it’s really a miracle he had any steam left for himself. But he did. Plenty.

What impresses me most is how fast it all seemed. Blink your eyes and he’s earned his doctorate. Turn around and he’s penned an amazing crime novel, The Ballad of Mila that will be published in February 2014 by Exhibit A, crime fiction imprint of Angry Robot across USA and UK. Look again and he’s teamed with Alessandro Vitti to create Red Dread, the comic book we’re talking about right now. Maybe it didn’t seem so fast to Matteo. Probably there were late nights and pots of coffee.

There’s an old saying, if you want something done, then ask a busy person. And Matteo has been very very busy with very very good results. This book is penciled by Alessandro Vitti. One wonders what magic Matteo worked to take Vitti away from his amazing work with Captain America and Hawkeye coming soon from Marvel Comics.

Better Red: RED DREAD

This is, after all, the artist who worked with Jonathan Hickman on Secret Warriors. He’s tops. Likely the “magic” which lured Vitti to this project was the project itself, and Vitti’s vivid, lush style brings life to these amazing visuals in a way few artists could manage – especially to our protagonist Mila.

There has always been something appealing, on some basic level, about a beautiful dangerous woman. Give her a gun and a sword, turn her loose on the world, and stand back. Mila is a wonderful take on this classic archetype. We should all have beautiful women in our lives that frighten us just a little bit. Graceful but gritty, lovely yet lethal, I look forward to many more wonderful pages of Mila to come in the future.

It begins right here with Red Dread. So pop some popcorn, open a cold can of whatever, screw your courage to the sticking place, and prepare yourself for hardcore hard-boiled action of the best kind – Italian style!

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