Barbadian folklore meets superheroes in Hardears, an Afro-Caribbean fantasy-adventure graphic novel by Matthew Clarke and Nigel Lynch.
Afterword by Cathy Thomas
The story takes place in an alternative world on Jouvert Island; a magical analog of the island of Barbados and begins when a superstorm of unprecedented strength obliterates the island, leaving it totally defenseless.
As the island reels from the devastation, Mr. Harding, the head of the Merchant Guild, charges in and promises to rebuild the economy of the island by creating jobs in his giant corporation. However, it’s soon discovered that Harding is a parasite and is capturing people from the island and using their life essence or vibes to feed his factories.
Bolo, a local hero, saves his love Zahrah from Hardin and cronies but the lovers are then framed as rebels against the state. The state has been compromised by the factories and the workers who know the truth about Harding must go into hiding. If Bolo, Zahrah, and their allies don’t take down Harding and the corrupt government, all will be lost. Together, they must find the strength of their island and ancestors to fight the evil forces that have taken over their homeland.
“The illustrations are detailed, both for figures and setting, evoking superhero comics through the level of action conveyed, and the vibrant colors are perfect for the tropical setting . . . Fans of Star Wars or The Lord of the Rings may eagerly embrace the politics and interactions between the various races of the Hardears Islands.” —Booklist
“The lore, magic, and history of Clarke and Lynch’s realm render it immersive, fanciful, complex, and deeply Caribbean… The spectacle carries the staying power of a bona fide folktale.”Publishers Weekly
“The illustrations are detailed, both for figures and setting, evoking superhero comics through the level of action conveyed, and the vibrant colors are perfect for the tropical setting…Fans of Star Wars or The Lord of the Rings mayBooklist
eagerly embrace the politics and interactions between the various races of the Hardears Islands.”