Detective Kate Warne was the first female private detective in the United States, and one of her greatest achievements was protecting President Abraham Lincoln by thwarting a treacherous Confederate plot in 1861. Thanks to Better Angels: A Kate Warne Adventure by Jeff Jensen and George Schall from BOOM! Studios imprint Archaia, Warne’s story will get its due – and you can get your first look at the October 2021 release right here at The Beat!
Warne’s story is a singular one, but it may not be familiar to you. While her true story is completely incredible, it hasn’t often been told – in fact, the notable detective is even buried under a gravestone that erroneously misspells her name as “Warn” in Chicago’s Graceland Cemetery. Fortunately, Jensen and Schall are an ideal creative team to tell her story through one of the best mediums for historical tales: comics!
A Well-Suited Creative Team
Jensen’s previous work includes serving as a story editor and writer on HBO’s Watchmen, and LOST fans may recognize his name from the influential columns he wrote on the series during his 19 year run at Entertainment Weekly.
But it isn’t just fictional mysteries with which Jensen has experience: he also wrote the graphic novel Green River Killer (illustrated by Jonathan Case), a nonfiction comic about his father, Detective Tom Jensen. Green River Killer was honored with the Eisner Award for Best Reality-Based Work in 2012.
Schall’s previous work includes Chasing Echoes (written by Dan Goldman), which was named one of The Beat’s Best Comics of 2019, and dealt with interpersonal relationships in a historical context – which will be perfect for depicting the story of Warne thwarting the anti-Lincoln plot, considering it includes infiltration and disguises for more than one of the parties involved.
And you’ll see Schall’s name again before Better Angels arrives in October, as he is also the artist for Made in Korea, written by Jeremy Holt and letterer Adam Wollet, the first issue of which will be published by Image Comics on May 26th, 2021.
Kate Warne is Afoot
If you’d like, you can read the full press release from BOOM! Studios beneath these incredible Better Angels preview pages.
Will you be gathering the clues and tracking this graphic novel to your local bookstore, comic shop, or public library when it is released in October 2021? Have you ever visited Warne’s erroneously labeled grave? Let The Beat know on social media @comicsbeat or in the comment section!
America’s First Female Detective Stars in BETTER ANGELS from BOOM!
Discover the Untold Story of Kate Warne by ‘Watchmen’ Screenwriter Jeff Jensen & Acclaimed Artist George Schall in October 2021
LOS ANGELES, CA (March 8, 2021) – BOOM! Studios today announced a brand new original graphic novel BETTER ANGELS: A KATE WARNE ADVENTURE, from Emmy and Eisner Award-winning writer Jeff Jensen (HBO’s Watchmen, Green River Killer: A True Detective Story) and acclaimed artist George Schall (Made In Korea), inspired by the true story of Kate Warne, America’s first female detective, and her singular achievement—thwarting a plot by Confederate radicals to kill Abraham Lincoln.
In 1861, America is at a crossroads. Abraham Lincoln, the man tasked with healing the nation, and his family are the targets of a conspiracy to assassinate them. Their safety – and the future of the American experiment – hinges on the success of a new kind of lawman, known by a word still novel in the culture: detective.
But there was only one detective whose extraordinary cleverness, versatility and mystery made them a singular individual who could save the Lincolns. Her name was Kate Warne. This is the true story of America’s first woman detective, who saved the life of her country’s greatest president and changed the course of history forever.
Jeff Jensen is a writer based out of Lakewood, California, best known for his work as a writer and story editor on HBO’s Watchmen, earning Hugo and Nebula nominations, and a writer and executive producer on the 2015 film Tomorrowland. His 2011 graphic novel Green River Killer: A True Detective Story, which dramatized the life and career of his father, Detective Tom Jensen, won the Eisner Award for Best Reality-Based Work. He spent nineteen years at Entertainment Weekly magazine as senior writer, critic, and verbose recapper of TV shows.
“When I first stumbled upon the story of America’s first female professional detective and her greatest claim to fame, I wanted to know the answer to a burning question: how did a woman from a small town in upstate New York in the mid-1800s grow up and get THAT job?” said Jensen. “BETTER ANGELS is an answer to that question in the form of a historical fiction adventure that challenges some of this country’s self-serving myths that all too often pass for history.”
George Schall is a comic book artist/writer from São Paulo, Brasil, whose works have been published by BOOM! Studios, Image Comics, Dark Horse, IDW, Humanoids Inc and others including himself as a self-publishing author. His latest works include the sci-fi miniseries Made in Korea (Image Comics) and the family comedic drama Chasing Echoes (Humanoids Inc). He currently lives in Barcelona and can be found online on Twitter and Instagram @georgeschall, as well as streaming his work and trying to develop a full beard at Twitch.tv/george_schall.
“I can’t wait for people to dive into Kate’s world of conspiracies and intrigue and wholesome companionship! I’m completely enamored by Jeff’s character work in this book: it’s fun, deep, emotional, thoughtful, daring! I’m sure everyone will love it too,” said Schall.
BETTER ANGELS: A KATE WARNE ADVENTURE is the latest release from BOOM! Studios’ award-winning Archaia imprint, home to inspiring graphic novels such as Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut, Ryan North, and Albert Monteys; The Sacrifice of Darkness by Roxane Gay, Tracy Lynne-Oliver, and Rebecca Kirby; Big Black: Stand at Attica by Frank “Big Black” Smith, Jared Reinmuth, and Améziane, We Served the People by Emei Burell, The Realist by Asaf Hanuka, Girl on Film by Cecil Castellucci and Vicky Leta, Melissa Duffy, V. Gagnon & Jon Berg, New World by David Jesus Vignolli, About Betty’s Boob by Vero Cazot and Julie Rocheleau, Waves by Ingrid Chabbert and Carole Maurel, and more.
“Fact is certainly stranger than fiction. The fascinating and true tale of the first female detective, Kate Warne, has long been buried within the pages of history but it remains hidden no longer as BETTER ANGELS presents a story inspired by her thrilling exploits,” said Sierra Hahn, Executive Editor, BOOM! Studios. “Get ready to join the clever detective on a case that’s almost too incredible to be true, from the darkest alleys to the loftiest halls of Washington, D.C., as she defies society’s expectations to do the impossible and save her country from a treasonous plot.”
Print copies of BETTER ANGELS: A KATE WARNE ADVENTURE will be available for sale in October 2021 at local comic book shops (use comicshoplocator.com to find the nearest one), bookstores, or at the BOOM! Studios webstore. Digital copies can be purchased from content providers, including comiXology, iBooks, Google Play, and Madefire.