Sleepless has continued to be a satisfying fantasy series that wraps together themes of family, devotion, and politics. This latest issue concludes the first arc with several surprising twists around the relationship between the princess and her sleepless knight protector.
Writer Sarah Vaughn provides depth to the royal machinations beyond the obvious motivations. I really feel for Poppy, placed in an untenable position due to the death of her father the King, as she tries to navigate between attempted assassinations and forced marriages for political advancement. She no longer feels that she belongs anywhere, with her family taken from her in various ways, a sympathetic situation.
Artist Leila del Duca gives the atmosphere the needed air of hanging menace, particularly when it comes to Poppy’s sleepless knight becoming ever more haunted by his eventual fate. His hooded, shadowed eyes are striking, continuously reminding us of his choices and vows. I also admire how she’s not afraid to create full, detailed settings that make this fantasy world more real for the reader.
The series will continue in September with issue #7, and the first collected edition of Sleepless will be available in July. It can be ordered now from your local comic shop with Diamond code MAY18 0073. (The publisher provided an advance digital review copy.)