Expedition V.1: The Lion Of Nubia

Expedition V1 The Nubian Lion cover

When former Roman soldier Marcus Livius is arrested in Egypt, starving and half mad, he is swiftly accused of desertion and murder. He denies the charges and embarks on an incredible tale… His story begins with the discovery of a body surrounded by documents written in an unknown language, as well as spectacular jewels and other items all suggesting the existence of a rich and powerful civilization previously unknown to Rome. Under the orders of Centurion Caius Bracca, Marcus decides to desert, and along with nine other men begins a secret expedition to find this unknown land. What will they discover… and how many will survive?

An exciting first chapter that lays the groundwork and provides just enough rope to keep you dangling.

Expedition V1 The Nubian Lion interior 1
Expedition V1 The Nubian Lion interior 2

The book is called The Lion Of Nubia on the cover and the title page but Europe Comics and Izneo have it listed as The Nubian Lion. Just in case you notice the difference. But whatever it’s called be sure to grab a copy and dive in, because it’s an exciting historical fiction action-adventure.

The Roman period is so rich with history, violence and mystery, and Marazano mines it well. A mission into unknown lands with a ragtag collection of fighters. Stoic hero, grizzled veteran, followed by increasingly questionable miscreants. What could go wrong?

While setting the stage for the rest of the story we learn of our hero and then go to flashback to find out what happened. It’s mostly about the action, but it’s varied enough to keep the reader focused. All the while we’re given bread crumbs along the trail to the main question: what exactly happened?

Expedition V1 The Nubian Lion interior 3
Expedition V1 The Nubian Lion interior 4

Frusin’s art is dynamic, fluid and works beautifully with this action story. Characters convey so much through their facial and body expressions, and it’s very well done. There is a definite Richard Corben influence to the style, especially in the grins and body shapes; it took me quite a few pages to scratch that itch.

Terrific use of colour throughout: no colourist is listed so it must be Frusin handling all art chores. Blending tones and palettes with environments and events make for great pages.

This was originally published in French by Dargaud and they show the series are three books. Looking forward to see how this plays out.

Expedition V1 The Nubian Lion interior 5
Expedition V1 The Nubian Lion interior 6

Please check out the preview below from Izneo, who provided my digital copy for review.

This post originally appeared at Comic Book Daily.