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I had another Exciting Transatlantic Parcel at the tail end of last week. This time I knew exactly what it contained: Nordguard Book 1: Across Thin Ice, winging its way to me from Sofawolf Press.

(Their 2011 T-shirt might just have slipped into my shopping-cart as well. It's a husky pulling a sled full of books, for crying out loud!)

I'd been excited about the Nordguard project for a very long time; mostly, of course, because its subject matter - anthropomorphic sled dogs - is highly relevant to my interests, but also because nordguard has allowed interested parties to follow the creative process all the way through. Thus I'd got hooked to the point of picking a favourite character, and I was at fever pitch when the product at last became available to buy - more than ready to put my money on the table. I felt involved, and I was especially pleased to have helped out in a tiny way.

The comic itself? It's a richly detailed world, in both concept and depiction. The artwork is everything you'd expect from Blotch; frankly I'd have been satisfied with 75 pages of the characters standing around talking, but there is a lot more action than that, and suspense, and mystery, and all those groovy things.

One character was, I felt, underused; she had hardly anything to say, and if I hadn't read a lot of backstory and seen a lot of concept art I would have forgotten she even existed. But I'm sure she'll come into her own later in the story.

Book 1 comes to a close just as the plot seems to be hotting up, which is frustrating to say the least. I can see why it's being released in instalments, but argh! want the next one now!

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I would very much like a copy of this myself when money allows - I have watched it with interest and love the artwork.

I was marvellously flattered to be told that a certain sled-dog of my acquaintance was in part used as a model for a character in the book. To my faint regret, he wasn't used one-to-one as a recognisable face (I'd have been insufferable forever), but it's still a pleasure to know that elements of his handsome mug are in there somewhere.
Oh, how lovely indeed! And I bet he's the model for my favourite, London, too.
Oh, wow, this looks incredible!