Author: Gabriel Picolo, Kami Garcia
Series: Teen Titans #1
Publisher: DC Comics
First Published: July 2, 2019
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
When a tragic accident takes the life of 17-year-old Raven Roth's foster mom--and Raven's memory--she moves to New Orleans to recover and finish her senior year of high school.
Starting over isn't easy. Raven remembers everyday stuff like how to solve math equations and make pasta, but she can't remember her favorite song or who she was before the accident. And when impossible things start happening, Raven begins to think it might even be better not to know who she was before.
But as she grows closer to her new friends, her foster sister, Max, and Tommy Torres, a guy who accepts her for who she is now, Raven has to decide if she's ready to face what's buried in the past...and the darkness building inside her.
From #1 New York Times bestselling author Kami Garcia and first-time graphic novel artist Gabriel Picolo comes this riveting tale of finding the strength to face who you are and learning to trust others--and yourself.
I remember watching Teen Titans when I was growing up and enjoying them, and it’s been really nostalgic watching the newer Teen Titans Go! with my children in recent years. It is a franchise that has survived a long time with loveable characters. Raven has always been my personal favorite in both adaptations as a character that I could relate to being an edgy goth teenager. I was never a huge fan of the series, I’ve always been only moderately interested in superheroes, but I always enjoy watching the TV series.
“Strength doesn’t come from your memories. It comes from your heart. And the heart never forgets.”
My husband showed me Piccolo’s fan art of Raven and Beast Boy when we first met and he’s always been a very big fan of his work. We were surprised to find that Piccolo was brought on board to draw for a new series of graphic novels featuring the teen titans, with origin stories updated to the present day. It was an instant pick up for him, and he devoured the graphic novel quickly. He convinced me to pick up and read the graphic novel as well, and it helped me with my reading slump.
The story presents us with a teenaged Raven, suffering from amnesia after the traumatic death of her adoptive mother. The amnesia plotline is overdone in many stories, but it was integrated well in this story to create internal conflict for Raven. The friendships that she builds are fun, and I loved the New Orleans setting. The mild romance also made me smile as cheesy as it was, though already knowing about Beast Boy spoiled things a bit as I expected everything to go wrong. This comic leaves off on a bit of a cliff hanger which I was not a fan of, and I hope that Raven’s story continues in future installments. The story isn’t very deep, but it’s still an enjoyable fast read.
As expected, Piccolo’s artwork was fantastic and translated well to a comic book format. In all, it was a decent introduction to Raven’s character, who she is and her powers as an empath. I liked getting to know the character more, given my only experience with Teen Titans has been with the TV show. My husband and I are excited about the next installment which will focus on Beast Boy, and to see where this series will go.