Blood River

    (Image, 2005)
™ and ©2005 Aquafish, Inc.

This is one of those “based on a true story” situations in which the true story really doesn’t appear beyond the basic idea. Yes, in the true story there was a nasty series of fatalities from vicious shark attacks in fresh water in New Jersey—that’s where the similarities end. Instead of five strangers being killed in July 1916, Blood River involves a group of friends and toughs they encounter in a tale set in the 1970s.

Interestingly enough, I’m familiar with the locale central to the true story: a small lake in Matawan, N.J. My mother grew up a few blocks from there, my grandparents still live there, and I have visited the lake many times dating back to my early childhood. This made viewing this comic book all the more exciting for me.

This an entertaining and well-told story moves along swiftly and easily. Readers will enjoy the art and the writing. Also, while the story itself doesn’t hold up in terms of historical context, the creators provide an incredibly sweet extra: A reprint of a detailed account of the true events from July 1916 appears at the end of the story, a nice bonus for trivia buffs.

— Ray Sidman

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3 copies available from $6.70
 Michael Avon Oeming, Dan BermanBrian Quinn