Stumptown Vol. 2 By Greg Rucka and Matthew Southworth
Genre: Mystery (Graphic Novel)
Series: #2 in the Stumptown series
Publisher: Oni Press
Publication Date: 2013
Source: e-galley provided by publisher through NetGalley
The Short Version:
Dex Parios is hired by a musician to find her stolen guitar but the case turns out to be way more complicated and dangerous than it should be.
Why I Read It:
I liked the first compilation of this series a lot and I’ve been eagerly anticipating this second volume.
This volume 2 is a compilation of five issues in the second story arc and from the series.
From the publisher:
Dex Parios has finally opened her own office, and her first case is to find rock star Mim Bracca’s baby — her prized guitar — which disappeared after her band Tailhook’s Portland show. Mim has no leads, and she doesn’t want to go to the police, but Dex needs the case, and besides, it shouldn’t be that hard to find a missing guitar.
As long as the D.E.A. doesn’t get involved … or the Skinheads.?
Dex Parios is a female PI in a slightly fictionalized Portland. Rucka says that the Stumptown of this series is not Portland but I can tell you that it’s mostly correct. It’s nice to see places I’m familiar with show up. Rucka lives here so he knows it well. Also Stumptown is an old nickname from the early days of Portland when in the rush to clear land stumps were left in the roads.
I like Dex. She’s not afraid to take on the tough guys and particularly in one sequence she’s quite the driver in a high speed car chase. She’s got a smart mouth and a sharp wit.
The story and the artwork have a noir-ish feel to them and Matthew Southworth does a great job with the artwork. It’s dark and a bit roughly drawn but that fits the tone, setting and pace of the story.
In addition to the basic story each issue closes with an essay by Rucka about the history of the Private Investigator in books and other media. He has said before that his interest in the PI genre began with the television show Rockford and elements of that show are definitely part of the Stumptown series. I would love to see these essays (and a list of Rucka’s favorite PI books) compiled on their own.
Since the ending of this one opens the door to unfinished bits of story I’m hoping that there will be a volume 3. Unfortunately I’ll have to wait.
This Volume 2 hardcover edition goes on sale September 24th so you have time now to get your hands on Volume 1 and read it so you’ll be ready for Volume 2 when it’s available.
If you’re a crime fiction fan you should check this one out.