How would you fare in 1860 with a father who disappeared suddenly, a Gang who’s chasing you for squealin’ to the cops, or a dangerous pirate crew after your prized possessions? Can you survive? Can you outwit them?
Alexander and Cleopatra, a pair of redheaded 12-year-old twins, somehow do. They’re trying to escape their terrible circumstances by heading to San Francisco by way of New Orleans. But of course, they encounter many troubles—another pair of redheaded twins looking to con a grieving father in San Francisco, a separation that leads Alex around Cape Horn and Cleo to New Granada, and dangerous folks pursuing them who will stop at nothing to get what they came for.
WHY YOU SHOULD JOIN ALEX AND CLEO ON THEIR ADVENTURE IN COMPASS SOUTH
- It’s a family adventure!
Never leave family behind, that’s the motto for the twins readers will meet in Compass South. They’re all they have of each other. Whatever situations they encounter—dangerous or not—they’ll get through it as long as they have each other. If they have to snitch on a gang to save each other, they will do it. If they’re separated, they will go through hell and high waters (well, actually stowing away on a ship or working the deck) to be reunited.
On Alex and Cleo’s adventure, they meet another pair of redheaded twins—Silas and Edwin—who are also on their way to San Francisco. A fight separates the two sets of twins, where Alex and Edwin are sent to a ship sailing around Cape Horn, and Cleo (pretending to be a boy named Pat) and Silas stow away on a ship headed to New Granada. They’re all hoping they make it to the same place to be reunited. While they’re apart, Alex and Edwin, and Cleo and Silas take care of each other despite their initial differences. They know how tough it is without their twin, so they do whatever they can to lessen that pain of losing them. It’s very touching.
- You’ll encounter gangs and pirates.
The stakes are high when you have a gang and pirates chasing after you! Alex and Cleo had been running with the Black Hook Gang since their dad disappeared, but now they’re running away from them. (Blood is thicker than water for Alex and Cleo. They’ll save each other, and not a dangerous gang.) With the Black Hook Gang on their tails, they also find themselves being chased after by the pirates of the infamous El Caleuche, who want something the twins have that will lead to treasures. These twins are always looking over their shoulder.
- The art is gorgeous.
I have so much love for Rebecca Mock’s art! Her art and coloring for Compass South instantly transports you into this late 19th century world. She does a beautiful job illustrating the two sets of twins in a way that makes it easy for you to differentiate who’s who, and the different settings. The art just gets better and better throughout the story. I don’t even know how to describe it because it needs to be experienced.
- It’s great for all ages.
Kids, pre-teens, teenagers, adults, and maybe grandparents will love this graphic novel! Adventure on the sea? Escaping gangs and pirates? What’s not to love? I was enamored with this world and the art and how devoted these characters are to their family. It’s really beautiful.
Who will love this comic? Everybody looking for an adventure! What’s not to love about being on the high seas (either working on the deck or stowing away in boxes), two sets of redheaded twins who will do whatever it takes to keep their siblings safe, pirates and gangs, and amazing art? Compass South needs to be in your hands right now. It’s full of adventure that’ll have your heart beating for more.
This is only the beginning! That’s right, my dear friends, there will be a sequel to this, and oh boy, I’m totally excited for the adventure Alex and Cleo will be embarking on, especially after what happens at the end of Compass South.