The Cadence is set in the city of Los Angeles and follows the story of Cara, who is known by her alter-ego, The Onen. Born with the superpower known as the Cadence, Cara can see into a person or object's pasts and probe its flaws and weaknesses. Confined in a walled-off city, armed with elite-level guards on every corner, she faces a corrupt fascist organization, known as Cerberus. When the organization's leader, Haren, plot's to seek an ancient power that could cripple what's left of the city, Cara's journey to investigate Cerberus's new motives begins. Aside from her unmatched fighting skills, visual ability, and pleasure in torturing Cerberus soldiers, her other role is another adventure in itself....embracing her unorthodox friendship with the only person in her life....her 13-year-old son.
The Cadence, at least the novel available for review, is the first part in a series starring a new superhero: 'The Onen'.
This first graphic novel - about twenty-four pages long - tells the story of how The Onen helps a family escape a fascist organization that is running Los Angeles. There is a wall that separates this city-state from the rest of the world. The Onen assists them by getting them cross while creating mayhem. The Onen is assisted by her son who is like the Oracle in DC comics i.e. a hacker and someone who tells The Onen where to go and what's happening.
The chemistry between Cara (The Onen's real identity) and her son is the stand-out feature here. Their back and forth ribbing is delightful and you can see the genuine affection they have for each other.
I liked the illustration style. It is not too stylistic to make it incomprehensible like a few other novels out there. Rather it reminds me of the Marvel/DC comics in the 2000s with gorgeous, vivid and clear pictures. The style doesn't really stand out but it is good enough to be pleasing to the eye.
There are a couple of nitpicks I have about this novel though. They are related to each other. Basically, the novel is too short. The story in the first twenty-four pages is also not that original. If the author had released the second portion of the story, or more, and given us more material to read, the over-arching narrative could have been better evaluated.
Kartik reads a lot as his tastes are eclectic. He formally started reviewing books on his blog Digital Amrit in 2015, since he wanted fellow readers to partake in the joy of discovering and reading. He works with indie and best-selling authors as part of their alpha/beta/ARC teams.