13 Coins is a book set in an elaborately detailed world which re-imagines the story of Heaven's war and the fate of the fallen angels that lost. In this setting, once the righteous angels were victorious, they bound the leader of the fallen angels, Semyaza, in a chain with the intension of imprisoning him until judgment day, and cast his fallen comrades into Hell. But 13 of the fallen angels broke free and tried to rescue their leader. They failed, but managed to escape to Earth with a piece of the chain. Semyaza was imprisoned, and most believed that was the end of it.
But there was a prophecy. A first born descendant of angel blood would reveal the location of Semyaza if he held the chain that the 13 had taken with them to Earth, and thus a new war between the angles and fallen would be brought about. The fallen angels melted down the chain and made 13 coins from it, with the plan to reveal this first born and to raise up mankind as their weapon against Heaven. The evil angles living on Earth set about creating their own followers, mating with human and beast, to create monstrous offspring to be their own personal army. Some seemed human and infiltrated government agencies and positions of power, and some were monsters, vampires, werewolves, and demons. These children of darkness collectively became known as the fallen. They are only opposed by a small group of decedents of Noah, who was the first son of a Warrior Angel sent by God to father a child whose blood line were to fight the fallen on Earth. But the decedents of Noah (who call themselves "the Son"), fearing the prophecy, always put the first born true blood son in their line to death in case the prophecy would be fulfilled, thus diluting their own blood, and weakening their position in the battle against the fallen.
John Pozner, a failed athlete, has had a rough time his entire life. His parents died in an accident when he was a child, he has had drug problems, a criminal record, and just never seems to land on his feet. The only good thing in his life was his girlfriend, Brandi. When she gets killed by the fallen after the leader of the local cell of the Son pays him a visit at the diner where she works, John is sucked into this secret war between the few remaining descendants of angels and the horrifying creatures straight out of nightmares. Nightmares which John has had since he was a child. As he gets caught up in this new world, he starts to discover the seriousness of his situation, and the part he must play in the desperate struggle against these forces of true Biblical evil.
Simon Bisley is an amazing artist, one of my all time favourites in fact. Since his early years working on various stories for 2000 AD, like Slaine and the ABC Warriors, and Lobo for DC Comics, his art has always been very unique to the industry. His earlier work always had a grainy canvas feel, which leant to his gritty and exaggerated lines, while still maintaining the detail reminiscent of one of his main influences, Frank Frazetta. As he moved away from painting to doing more pencil drawing, he never lost the energy of his earlier work, and his style is still instantly recognizable today. Bisley truly was the best man for the job on 13 Coins, nobody really does mean and sexy bad girls, or rough and grizzly heroes like Bisley does, and his panels really capture the dark background and high action sequences of the story.
Boardgame and graphic novel enthusiast. Marvel or DC? Image. Old-school gamer. Avid role-player. Kermit for president. I believe that werewolves will rule the world one day.
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