Shadow Eater - One Shot Manga

Legends of Evos Series - Deluxe Edition Bonus Chapter

Fiction - Graphic Novel/Comic
105 Pages
Reviewed on 11/05/2019
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

Shadow Eater - One Shot Manga is a graphic novel with manga-style illustrations by author R. J. Tolson, and forms part of the Legends of Evos Series. In this edition, we are introduced to the Manga Shadow Eater storyline, and to the world of Evos and its history. After humanity has either been slain or enslaved the world over by the beasts which roamed the land, there seems little hope of salvation or freedom for the human race ever again. But when a seemingly immortal young man decides to explore Evos once again with his trusty pet chimera in tow, a light shines in the shadowy world that was once full of life.

Saithe Esus is a classic hero of the manga world, sure to please fans with his youthful looks but powerful stance and capable swordsmanship. The concepts of light and dark play well in both the thematic storyline and the illustrations of the graphic novel itself, weaving an interesting post-apocalyptic storyline with plenty of magic and mystery to discover along the way. The dialogue was well arranged and easy to read and follow, giving nuance to the story without overtaking the easy readability of the manga format. I particularly enjoyed the more dark depictions of the beasts and monsters themselves and found both the art and storytelling of R. J. Tolson to be highly engaging. Overall, Shadow Eater - One Shot Manga provides a great introductory burst of story and action for readers looking for a new manga world to get lost in.

Marta Tandori

Ten-year-old Saithe Esus lives with his eight-year-old brother, Grim, and his parents in the city. Saithe’s mother is a former city warrior, trained in combat, who coaches her two sons in the art of combat while their father is an alchemist, making magical potions and elixirs in a lab in their house. There’s concern over a group of bandits from the outside that are attacking homes at night within the city. Their parents reassure the boys that they’re safe until one night their home is invaded by the Salfrongs and Kalbites, two creature races. Their father immediately knows the creatures have come for his magical elixir and sends the boys to his lab to destroy it before the intruders can get their hands on it. Both boys quickly leave but Grim disobeys their father and goes back to help their parents. Once in the lab, Saithe decides to drink the elixir instead of destroying it, hoping that it’ll help him defeat the intruders but when he gets back, he realizes that he’s too late…

Shadow Eater - One Shot Manga, the first volume in the Legends of Evos series, is an exciting work of manga created by R.J. Tolson. A “manga” is a style of Japanese graphic novel that typically combines action, adventure, fantasy, and violence. In Shadow Eater, Tolson has remained true to the manga style. His black and white panels are like stills from a movie; they reveal details of the action that seem in slow motion before zooming in from a distance to close up shots, creating a visual dynamic that is both compelling and entertaining. And while Tolson’s story is rooted in fantasy, it’s nevertheless relatable in that it focuses on a loving family torn apart by violence. This is punctuated by vivid facial expressions that effectively convey a wealth of emotion, drawing readers into Saithe’s story. Like most manga, Tolson has serialized his story, with the next episode, Welcome to Banshee, to come in the next chapter. The author also gives readers a taste of another series called True Life, Legends of Tye Series. All in all, Shadow Eater is a great start to what promises to be an exciting new series.

Jessica Barbosa

R.J. Tolson’s Shadow Eater - One Shot Manga manga contains two stories: the first one is the debut of the manga itself. It centers around the life of Saithe Esus, a seemingly normal boy of Nera City, in the world of Evos. He has a rambunctious little brother, an agent mother, an alchemist father, and a pet chimera named Spice. However, his happy childhood was taken from him when his family was killed when he was ten years old. Fast forward two thousand years later, Saithe does not forgive or forget, and he continues to wait for the chance to avenge his family. The second story is from the premise of the author’s manga, True Life. It is focused on the only teenager of the Astra Village, Venn. He is a Village Chief hopeful, someone whom the clan has high hopes for. Unfortunately, he is put to the test a lot sooner than he hoped when trouble befell the village and he is the only one able to save it.

Shadow Eater delves into the genre of dystopian fiction adventure with great enthusiasm. I found the manga to be entertaining and fast-paced with the main characters being molded by their experiences and trials. I can only imagine what troubles lie ahead of them, and I can’t wait to glimpse the men they will become at the end of their journey. The story itself had me wondering what Saithe and Venn could possibly face in their next adventures. I found myself cheering for them both on as they embarked on journeys that could change their lives, hopefully for the better. This manga has the potential to be memorable. Tolson has done a good job of creating his own world and peppering it with its own troubles and unique traits, making it stand out from the rest. It is an easy read with an open ending that leaves you wondering and hoping to discover what comes next.

Rabia Tanveer

Saithe Esus may look like an ordinary 19-year-old, but he is not. He has loved being a hermit for more than 2000 years to let his past stay in the past and focus on living in the moment. However, when he gets the chance to avenge his family, he is not going to let it pass. So he enters Evos when it is in utter chaos, ready to exact his revenge. However, before he can do that, he needs to find a way to save humanity and the world at large. He has his strength, his intelligence and his sword with him, but he also has a baby chimera following him. Can he make it work?

Shadow Eater - One Shot Manga: Legends of Evos Series by R.J. Tolson is a wonderfully elaborate and impressively detailed book that just demands all the reader's attention. The characters, the imagery, the descriptions, and the illustrations put life into the story and let it fly. The characterization was brilliant. I enjoyed how the characters developed and simply evolved. Saithe Esus is an awesome protagonist; he is witty, smart, very intelligent and exceptionally charming. He knows what he wants, how he can get it and how he can get it now. He is an opportunist who manipulates things to get his way and I simply loved him. He was able to make me smile and give me chills, which is a duality that just boggles my mind. The baby chimera behind him was just so terrifying for me and I really wanted to like it. But that added another layer to the story and made me love this manga even more. This is a definite 5-star book that I would read again and again. A work of art!