The Undertaking of Lily Chen

Today Comic Kingdom has its very first independent graphic novel: The Undertaking of Lily Chen. As I have stated before, I heavily gravitate towards DC Comics as my main publisher of choice. With this new blog endeavor of  Comic Kingdom has come a urge to read outside my comfort zone. After grazing the numerous great Amazon reviews talking about the phenomenal artwork, I was sold. In an attempt to leave my comfort zone: here is another Comic Kingdom Review.

Undertaking Lily Cover.jpg

After reading this one you will understand why I put emphasis on this fact: Danica Novgorodoff is not only the writer but the amazing artist as well. She literally paints a beautifully creative story in front of your eyes. When reading the initial reviews before I ordered this graphic novel, I was overwhelmed with talk about the spectacular artwork that this story held. The reviews were not misleading as I was absolutely blown away with the artwork. Novgorodoff provides us with a maculate mixture of classical Chinese water color dominating the colorful backgrounds and a modern digital graphic design to well define her characters. I figured it was only appropriate to explain how powerful the artwork is in the book as it may be the most driving force behinds the book’s awesomeness!


Synopsis – Deshi Li is a young man in China who is working late night on the military air base when he receives a surprise visit from his brother Wei. One thing leads to another and a horrible accident occurs that leads to Wei’s death. Deshi is then forced to face and explain to his parents how the family’s pride and joy has untimely passed away. Deshi knows this will not go over well as Wei was always  viewed by the family as the star-child. Furthermore, the graphic novel touches on a factual problem that faced rural China known as “ghost marriages”- the Chinese tradition demands that husbands and wives always share a grave. Sometimes, when a man died unmarried, his parents would procure the body of a woman, hold a “wedding,” and bury the couple together. This was the very burden that Deshi’s family was happy to spitefully bestow upon him. The story then tells a twisted tale of Deshi’s search for his brother’s corpse bride. Deshi will follow these orders to the ends of Earth to prove his worth to his family. Along the way he will discover much about the world around him and even more about his true self.

 Reader Reference (1-5)

Story/Plot -4

Artwork- 6

Dialogue- 3

Overall- 4

Basic Info

Publisher – First Second

Publication Date – March 25, 2014

Page Numbers – 432 – (However, due to the book’s content being art/image heavy with dialogue sprinkled in, this may seem like a large page count, but it is probably a 30 min read).

Pricing-  Sticker Price- $29.99

                   Online – $19.22

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