Trees #1 begins with a Bang, literally as the Rio De Janeiro Pacification Police equipped with advanced technology specifically different types of drones hunts down a group of young people. The pursuit is short-lived as the title characters quickly take center-stage. The Trees are enormous and emit a green waste that wipes out entire city blocks. Jason Howard does an excellent job portraying the magnitude and dominance of the Trees in Rio de Janeiro. The Christ the Redeemer statue is an ant in comparison.
Writer Warren Ellis takes us from the oppressed streets of Rio to a Manhattan skyscraper, where ironically (you will have to discover the irony yourself!) the reader is given a history lesson from Vince, a seemingly ambitious politician, about the struggles and difficult decisions the city faced after the arrival of the Trees.
Ellis takes us from the gritty canals and grim high rises of Manhattan to the colorful City of Shu, Special Cultural Zone to meet Tian Chenglei, an aspiring artist from a small village. The book takes a very interesting turn here as Tian enters the City. The City turns Tian’s senses upside down and inside out. He feels a “strange gravity” and enters an apartment complex renamed The Great Spaceship. It appears the Trees have affected the city in some manner. Are they perhaps terraforming the planet?
The reader is abruptly taken away from the colorful and tragic City of Shu to a wintery wasteland where Ellis introduces Marsh and Dr. Sida. The two appear to be conducting research on the Trees in North West Spitzbergen when they aren’t providing entertainment with their colorful conversation.
Trees #1 takes the reader on an adventure, jumping from locale to locale, giving the reader just enough to want to learn more about the ominous ever-looming Trees, and the people living on the ground trying to make sense of the new world around them. Tian defines Trees concisely when he says “I don’t really know what it is yet.” But this reader sure does want to find out!
Trees #1 is a decent opening act, giving the reader a taste of the world, but leaving many questions to be answered.
- The enormity of the Trees
- A sense of mystery regarding the Trees
- Colorful dialogue
- Lack of explanation as to what is going on