FUND THIS: Unfinished City

Published On March 29, 2014 | By Richard Bruton | Comics, Fund This

FUND THIS is my attempt to throw a few worthy projects that require some form of crowdsourcing support from your good selves.

This week, something completely new, by a new team to me (well, almost). Unfinished City is a proposed 160-page b&w detective thriller set in the criminal underworld of the former Yugoslavia.

unfinished city cover final with logo 2a

You can find the first 20 pages of the graphic novel here at the preview. I think this is a real plus for any Kickstarter project, gives a far better feel for the work than a simple video and a few preview pieces. With a preview of the first xx pages you can really get a feel for the plot, art and storytelling of the work. And I have to say, it was those 20-pages that convinced me to put this out there in front of you. It’s really well done, the first section all scene setting, a glimpse into the character of protagonist Nadja, who’s come to her family home of Montenegro to visit her sister, a sister she discovers was murdered two weeks prior.

Stricken by grief, Nadja starts to investigate the crime, and quickly discovers all is not as it seems. Her home town has changed; the fall of communism a decade before has been replaced with corruption and organised crime. Everybody knows the murder was pinned on the wrong man – and the true murderer may well be the most powerful man in the city…

Yep, sounds good, doesn’t it? Looks good as well. Croatian artist Robert Solanović is in charge there, and he’s created something very atmospheric, yet also very light and with just a hint of the cartoony about it, keeping the pace up and the tone dark. There’s even a few panels here and there where I was thinking Paul Grist. And if you’re going for crime noir, that’s some peak to hit.

Unfinished City is written by Benjamin Dickson, whose previous works include Falling Sky, Slumdroid, contributions to Aces Weekly, the SelfMadeHero Lovecraft anthology, Ctrl Alt Shift and Heavy Metal. We’ve featured him on the FPI Blog before now due to his ongoing children’s project The Kestrels with Mick McMahon. He’s co-writing the graphic novel with writer Sylvija Martinović. Here’s a little of what Dickson has to say:

Unfinished City is a powerful, stylish thriller with a sharp, East-European edge. Nadja’s home town of Nikšić is a real place; many elements of the story are drawn from Sylvija’s experience of living in the city, and the stories that circulated at the time. A lot of the locations featured in the book really exist, and the background details true-to-life. At the time this story is set, the war that tore Yugoslavia apart had only ended two short years before.  Though the war never came to Niksic, the town was economically devastated, leaving it ripe for corruption and organised crime.

Using this backdrop, we wanted to tell a gripping and gritty detective thriller that would subtly draw you in before you knew what was happening. This will undoubtedly be a controversial book in the Balkans – so much so that Sylvija and I had to consciously distance some elements from real life!

And now for the first section of that preview…..

UC 1 01 UC 1 04 UC 1 05 UC 1 06 UC 1 07 UC 1 08 UC 1 09 UC 1 10 UC 1 11 inks ff UC 1 12 inks f

But once in port things go badly for her…. and the sister she came to see…. well, it’s not good news…

20 21

There’s a little more in the PREVIEW, but hopefully, given what I’ve just said and previewed here you can see it’s well worth your patronage – so, what are you waiting for. Kickstarter is here – go fund it!!

Oh, one more thing… probably just me and my age, but anyone else hear this when they think Kickstarter?

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About The Author

Richard Bruton
- Started in comics retail aged 16 at Nostalgia & Comics, Birmingham. Now located in Yorkshire, he's written for the Forbidden Planet International Blog since 2007. Specialising in UK Comics and All-Ages comics, Richard's day job in a primary school allowed him to build the best children's graphic novel library in the country.

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