Breaking the Ice

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I'm such a sucker for sword and sorcery style high fantasy and I really love it when creators of original doujinshi take the time to flesh out their characters and the worlds in which they live. Tricia's Breaking the Ice, from her Realm of Juxtan series is a well thought out book with an interesting storyline and characters who seem to have been well thought out long before showing up in print.

Breaking The Ice is a short story about a mage named Hadrian, a mercenary named Caledon and how they try to lay low from a sorcerer trying to track down Hadrian. While hiding out in a cave behind a frozen waterfall, the two end up ummm ... passing the time away. To get more background info on the characters just go to Tricia's Web site at You won't regret it.

The story and characters were created by Tricia, but the cover and interior art is by P. L. Nunn, a young lady whose artwork I've come to really enjoy over the past year or so. The art and writing here are very detailed, so anyone under 18 years of age need not apply. There is a short story at the end of the doujinshi and it's pretty much identical to the illustrated story, except the text version has much more detail and it gives more background information as to why Hadrian and Caledon are on the run.

Even though I liked this story a lot, my biggest gripe is with the story itself -- either the text portion of the story should have come first or there should have been alternating pages of text and illustrations. I read the illustrated portion first and felt so lost. I had no idea who these people were and I felt no connection to them. It wasn't until I read the text portion that I got a grasp of the characters and their motives. This is why I suggested visiting the Web site for more background info on the characters and to learn more about the storyline.

This story has some hard yaoi moments both in text and illustrated forms so if that isn't your thing or if you're underage then stay away. But if you love fantasy, hard yaoi, well drawn characters and a fast paced story, then check out Breaking The Ice.

--reviewed by Jason

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