Asylum Volume 2: Seeking Asylum If you're looking for a tale unlike anything you've ever read before, then you might like to know that “Asylum Volume 2: Seeking Asylum” is now on sale. Written and illustrated by Gabriel Moore-Topazio, Asylum is an independent comic book series about Glass Asylum, a mental institution that parallels an alternate reality called The Ring. Topazio blends action, drama, and fantasy with dystopian themes and a post-apocalyptic landscape, only to create a unique, character driven story that uses the framework of epic fantasy to explore themes of metaphysical identity and internal struggle.

In The Ring, the patients of Glass Asylum have special gifts which correspond with their mental health issues whilst being revered as holy beings, known as, Divine Children. The Ring is a place in turmoil, where the mysterious deity Father and his super-powered Divine Children oppressively rule the unpowered population, the Castoffs. This social power struggle is at the heart of the story, as Father and his privileged elite are a small but powerful religious authority, who invoke divine right to mercilessly crush the Castoffs into submission.

Asylum Volume 2: Seeking AsylumAsylum centers around Evie, who wakes up in The Ring with no knowledge of who or where she is, except that she has the gift of healing. She is taken in as part of Father’s Family, but, luckily enough, quickly sees their corruption and flees to live among the Castoffs who fear and hate her kind.

In Volume 2 new born Divine Children, like Evie, are feeding Father’s army, yet some of them question the Family’s unethical methods and seek a life away from the authoritarian religious order. While secretly forging a life for themselves among the Castoffs, Evie and the others discover that a life of freedom isn’t easy, and that sometimes they will be their own worst enemy. Plus lets not forget, as the Divine Family grows, it sends ripples throughout The Ring and whispers of rebellion fill the air.

Asylum Volume 2: Seeking AsylumThis exciting second story arc also reveals secrets about the relationship between Glass Asylum and The Ring, and further explores the patients of the asylum. There is Damian, an ex-rockstar who has a phobia of electricity and dreams about a woman he has never met. She is Makenna, and due to her struggles with severe agoraphobia, she never leaves her room. There is also Clay, who believes he hears the thoughts of others, and Samantha, who is so frightened of interacting with people that she will break down and cry when pressed to speak to someone.

Asylum empowers these people who are in a battle with themselves by making them heroic despite their struggles. It isn’t about angsty superheroes who engage in cartoon violence, oh no, they are troubled souls who are trying to reconcile their inner demons with their desire to do good.

'Asylum Volume 2: Seeking Asylum' collects issues 5 to 9 in a 124 page black and white trade paperback, complemented with a cover gallery featuring work by Lauren Day Benson and Sinclair Klugarsh. It's available at indyplanet.com and you can get updates about upcoming issues on their facebook and twitter pages.  Or alternately, click here to see an interview with Gabriel.

ASYLUM VOLUME 2 - SEEKING ASYLUM ASYLUM VOLUME 2 - SEEKING ASYLUM Reviewed by David Andrews on September 14, 2016 Rating: 5

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