“The Deep & Dark Blue” tells a beautiful story centered on transgender identity


Source: Niki Smith

Niki Smith’s fantasy graphic novel “The Deep & Dark Blue” captures the emotional complexity of transgender identity, with brilliant design and an intricate storyline.

The novel follows twin siblings Hawke and Grayson, who narrowly escape with their lives after their cousin Mirelle stages a political coup, though they are presumed dead.

The twins go undercover as Hanna and Grayce, initiates in the Communion of Blue — a mysterious order of magical women who weave blue thread integral to their reality.

The novel begins with the twins peeking in on a ritual performed by the Communion of Blue. It is delightful to see how the mystery of the order fades as tension builds.

The difference in the twins’ reactions to their new surroundings connects you to them both, as it uncovers their personalities and character arcs.

Hawke is restless and despises having to act as Hanna, whereas Grayce has not only adapted but excelled in her studies in the Communion.

This character development enhanced the revelation that Grayce is a transgender girl, finding comfort and strength in the women-only Communion.

The book feels genuine, featuring a transgender character when the fantasy genre still struggles with diversity, and portraying Grayce as supported and loved by new and old allies alike.

“The Deep & Dark Blue” is a dynamic emotional story, told with bright colors, expressive faces and movement, on top of eye-catching character and world design.

If you’re looking for a short, stand-alone graphic novel with diverse characters and interesting storyline, read “The Deep & Dark Blue”.

Rating: 5 stars out of 5