Loki: Journey Into Mystery
By Katherine Locke
- Loki: Journey Into Mystery
Author: Katherine Locke
- Series: Marvel
Publisher: Titan Books
- ISBN: 9781803362540
- Published: December 2023
- Pages: 330
- Format reviewed: Hardback
- Review date: 21/12/2023
- Language: English
After more than a decade of box office hits and TV shows even the more casual Marvel fan is starting to realise that there is a vast and rich world of lore that the comics have built up over the decades. The comics of Thor and Loki bring with them their own history, not only that written for the comics, but the original stories too. Throw in several versions of hell and the old Gods of Albion and you have a multitude of world and characters. Can Loki traverse them in Katherine Locke’s Loki: Journey into Mystery and bring the reader with him?
Loki is the God of mischief, but he is also dead, but like many Gods before him, the concept of death is a little nebulous and Loki is back in a younger self. This version is not the Loki of old, he feels like he may be a better person, but this conviction will be tested when he is tasked by the All Mothers to go out on a series of quests to save the day but save the day in a very Loki way.
Adapting a graphic novel into prose comes with a set of problems as you try to describe a lot of the visual storytelling, Journey is an original novel so does not have to compete with pen and ink. However, Locke has remained true to the feel of the comics and created a new adventure that feels like it would fit very well into a graphic series, full of fantastical places and scenes. There is one overarching story, but it is split into parts, each focuses on a smaller adventure and many of Loki’s antics come back to haunt him in the concluding section.
Locke goes full in when tackling the lore of Loki. Not only do we meet the Gods of Asgard, but also Hell, Hel, Albion, and more. Characters that you do not automatically connect to Loki appear in cameos alongside many foes we have seen before. By using Young Loki, Locke has cleverly introduced a way to change the relationship that Loki has with them. Is this the Loki that they dealt with in the past or has he really changed?
It can be a little confusing keeping up with the lore as you leap from one of the nine realms, to the one of the underworlds, to another plane of Gods from somewhere else. The more you know about the Loki of the comics, the better understanding you will have. No matter where I found myself, I never lacked for entertainment. This is because the character of Loki is well written. This is the usual disrespectful, fun Loki, but a younger version who has less confidence in his decision making and is not sure if he has changed or not. There is also an added love interest that proves to be fun as it is a young Loki trying to catch a girl’s eye.
There is so much colour and character in Journey that it truly feels like its namesake. Loki sets out on a proper journey across time and space, learning about the different realms but also a lot about himself. There are some action set pieces, but Loki usually uses his wit and intelligence to save the day. The book is more in keeping with the comic origins than the TV show and film Loki, but fans of both will find something worth reading in this original novel as the Loki on offer is still as interesting and charismatic as ever.
Written on 21st December 2023 by Sam Tyler .