Image Comics has released a preview of Ascender #1, ahead of the issue’s FOC date of Monday, April 1st. The sequel series of the critically-acclaimed Descender is written by Jeff Lemire and illustrated by Dustin Nguyen. Set ten years after the events of the original series, Ascender follows the journey of a young girl as she searches for TIM-21, the lead character of Descender, in a world where magic has replaced technology.
In the accompanying release, Lemire and Nguyen had this to say about returning to the world of Descender:

“Dustin and I love the world of Descender and we’re re-energized by this new direction, which has opened all sorts of new storytelling possibilities for us,” said Lemire. “Ascender will feel like a continuation of the Descender saga and like a brand new book all in one.”

Nguyen added: “Plus, it’ll be fantastic to switch from drawing machines and metal all day, to all flesh and fantasy for a while!”

Nguyen’s visuals on Descender were beautiful, and the preview for Ascender looks to continue that trend, albeit as the artist himself points out in a different vein. Check out the four preview pages for the debut issue below. You can pre-order Ascender #1 by next Monday, or try your luck looking for it in stores on April 24th.

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PORTLAND, ORE. 03/27/2019 — From the powerhouse creative team behind the bestselling, award-winning DescenderNew York Times bestselling writer Jeff Lemire (Gideon Falls, Sweet Tooth, The Underwater Welder, Black Hammer) and artist Dustin Nguyen (Batman: Little Gotham)—comes an all new, ongoing fantasy series set in the same universe, Ascender. This new chapter launching from Image Comics on Wednesday, April 24 is set to recapture fans’ hearts and imaginations as well as provide the perfect jumping on point for new readers with no knowledge of the previous Descender series.

“Dustin and I love the world of Descender and we’re re-energized by this new direction, which has opened all sorts of new storytelling possibilities for us,” said Lemire. “Ascender will feel like a continuation of the Descender saga and like a brand new book all in one.”

Nguyen added: “Plus, it’ll be fantastic to switch from drawing machines and metal all day, to all flesh and fantasy for a while!”

Set ten years after the conclusion of Descender, in Ascender the machines have gone away, and in their absence magic has reclaimed the universe. Now one girl must embark on an epic quest to find robotkind and its fabled boy messiah, TIM-21, before it’s too late…

The Descender series launched in 2015 to massive critical acclaim. The series was recognized as an NPR “Best Book of the Year” in 2015, was listed four years in a row by the American Booksellers’ Association’s Young Adult Library Services Association’s “Great Graphic Novels for Teens” round-up, and made Newsweek’s “Best Comics Books of 2018” round-up.

Ascender #1 (Diamond Code FEB190010) will be available in comic shops on Wednesday, April 24. It is also available to pre-order across many digital platforms, including the official Image Comics iOS app, Amazon Kindle, Apple Books, comiXology, and Google Play.

Select praise for the Descender series:

“Your new sci-fi obsession is here, and its name is Descender.” —Entertainment Weekly

“Lemire (Essex County) smoothly doles out information while amping up the tension, and the innocent, friendly character of TIM-21 creates real heart in the midst of extreme violence. Nguyen’s watercolor artwork is marvelous, using the medium’s transparency to create fluid and subtly lustrous pages.” —Publishers Weekly(starred review)

“The art feels light and almost whimsical. I love that. I also love the colors and the choice to make certain areas (UGC) bright so the panels pop off the page, and others (mining colony, Gnish homeworld), much darker, grittier. All of it together looks like watercolors without brushstrokes. Overall, there’s a little something for everyone here in Descender.” —Kirkus Reviews

“An emotional, imaginative new universe, lavishly brought to life by the great Dustin Nguyen.” —Brian K. VaughanSaga

“Gorgeous.” —Vulture/NY Magazine

“An epic sci fi tale with a huge heart.” —Scott Snyder, Wytches

“It’s so beautiful.” —Kelly Sue DeConnickBitch Planet

“Deft and delightful, running from warmth to chilling, gentle to brutal.” —Greg RuckaLazarus

“Hauntingly beautiful sci-fi that manages to be both epic & powerfully intimate. Masterfully done.” —Jason AaronSouthern Bastards

“What a beautiful, beautiful book. Descender is worth buying for the artwork alone, so it’s almost a bonus that it tells such a compelling story about the future of humanity in a universe filled with terrors.” —Charles SouleThe Oracle Year, Curse Words

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