ISBN: 1840237643
NLB Call No.:

Mike Carey: writer
Michael Gaydos: artist

There’s a stark grungy feel to the black & white line drawings. Seemed messy at first but it works.

Took me a while to make sense of the story, but in a satisfying sort of way.

Inferno, or Hell, is a realm like an afterlife that’s all things bad (took me a while to figure that out).

You can’t die in Hell.

You can get killed but you are reborn in the desert and you make your way back to the city that seems stuck in the medieval times.

John Travis finds himself killed for no apparent reason and ends in a desert — Hell’s desert. He makes his way to the city and subsequently learns he’s really Jacomo Terence who escaped hell 800 years ago and is now back with some secret.

But John Travis has lost his memories (Jacomo deliberately made it so) and much of the plot goes on about his recovery of the hidden memories (in the form of crystal balls). He’s helped by Nostradamus and a Changeling named Shule (she transforms into any being by eating part of the flesh).

The mystery comes from the search for the memories, which seems to imply some deep dark secret (it’s not really a deep dark secret, but let’s just say the ending isn’t disappointing and actually gels the entire story together).

Suspense comes from the trio being hunted by the minions of Lord Baal (ruler of the city of hell), particularly a Captain Malateste who wears a suit of iron armour to literally contain a demon within)

It’s a weird tale that’s very “British” (best way i can articulate it). Rather sandman-ish in fact (Neil Gaiman).