Review: Sunstone

Sunstone is Stjepan and Linda Luksic Sejic’s own webcomic series that can be found on one of Stjepan’s Deviant Art pages. The first chapter of this series is being printed as a trade by Image Comics. As a fan of this series, I am excited to see it as a physical book. I don’t exactly remember how I first stumbled onto Sunstone, but I do know it involved the fan artwork of Stjepan Sejic. If you’ve never seen his fan art, you really should. A lot of it is quite good, and it can be funny, too.

What is Sunstone? Simply put, it is a story about the relationship between Ally and Lisa, two ladies that have special needs and are a little lonely. By special needs, I mean S&M. Seems that neither of them have ever truly found a partner that understands. Ally is the more dominant one, she enjoys being creativity sexual, but hasn’t found the right person to be with. Then there’s Lisa, who’s like being tied up. She’s experimented with self-bondage, but like Ally has not yet found that right person. These two find each other online and decide to meet in real-life, this is where their story begins.

Beyond the sexual nature of the artwork (I’m not going to lie, there’s a lot of it) there is a very human story being told. A story about love, friendship, and trust that develops between Ally and Lisa. You, as the reader, get a very good picture about these two ladies and how their choices have lead them to cross paths. At its core, Sunstone is a love story. Check out our Preview.

The Good

Stjepan Sejic’s artwork! It’s simply superb. He has a very clean style that works well with the story. His characters are very expressive, there are little gestures he incorporates into his characters that give them a depth and warmth. It might be something as simple as glancing away or a character biting her bottom lip. Then there are subtle changes in the artwork. Stjepan Sejic work is primarily digital, so Sunstone certainly has that digitally drawn feel about it. However, there are some panels where the style changes, like to a digital painting or airbrushing. Overall, the artwork is simply beautiful.

The characters themselves. Our pervy nerds, Ally and Lisa, are complicated characters, we are given some knowledge regarding their background. To me, Ally seems to be a bit of a nerd. She’s a successful software programmer, likes video games, may read comic books and has a sense of humor that I can relate to. Lisa, on the other hand, starts off shy and insecure but grows in confidence when paired with Ally. And then there’s Alan, the kinky tinkerer. Alan is the friend that Ally can confide in about anything. He makes the toys and gear, he’s the friend that understands. *SPOILER* While his role in chapter 1 is not big, Alan is important later in the story.

The Bad

*SPOILER* The uncertainly for future printings. I wonder if the later chapters will see print. If the sales are good, then maybe I’m worrying over nothing. Only time will tell. Sunstone is currently in its fourth chapter online, with new segments of the story being released somewhat sporadically.   One of the pitfalls of being an in-demand comic book artist, I suppose, is not having enough time for your own passion project. Indeed, Stjepan Sejic has been very busy this past year and 2015 is looking like it be might the same. Congrats to Stjepan for stepping in as artist for Rat Queens.

The Verdict

Sunstone is not your average love story. It’s a beautiful and complex tale about what love and trust are to some people. Stjepan and Linda Luksic Sejic have done wonderfully with this series, both with the art and story. The series has a very independent feeling to it, and I’m pleased that Image Comics is publishing it as a trade. Hopefully, we’ll see the later chapters in print at some point in the future. If we’re good, maybe a monthly series too. I can dream, can’t I?

Story: 4.5 Out of 5
Art: 5 Out of 5
Overall: 5 Out of 5

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