Category Archives: Ronin Island

Ronin Island #1 cover

Ronin Island is a twelve issue comic book series written by Greg Pak with line art by Giannis Milonogiannis, colors by Irma Kniivila, and letters by Simon Bowland. The story follows two young rivals as they struggle to protect their peaceful island home from a warlord from the mainland and a monstrous new threat.

You can buy rare signed copies of the first issue at the Greg Pak Shop.

New RONIN ISLAND art and interview!

I’m still totally blown away by the tremendous response to RONIN ISLAND #1, which hit stores last week. Thank you so much to everyone who’s spread the word — and huge thanks and high fives to artist Giannis Milonogiannis, colorist Irma Kniivila, letterer Simon Bowland, and editors Cameron Chittock, Amanda LaFranco, and Eric Harburn!

Check out the gorgeous issue #2 cover above, with line art by Giannis. And brand new interview with Giannis and me has just been published at Comicon.com. Here’s an excerpt:

Hannah Means-Shannon: How appealing was it to bring together cultural groups who during this period might otherwise have been enemies? (Japan, China, Korea) What does that add to the story from a creative perspective?

Greg Pak: This was always one of the key hooks for me. I was hugely excited about the prospect of telling a samurai story in and of itself — I just love the genre. But when I knuckled down and thought about what I could personally bring to this kind of story as a writer, I found myself thinking about the Asian diaspora, the way folks with family origins in so many different countries come together — or don’t come together — in America and elsewhere. And I thought about the possibility of exploring that kind of thing in a period samurai story, and I got very excited. I’m always excited about stories that dig into diversity within diversity, the very specific ways in which folks within a community grapple with both their similarities and differences. So this idea of telling a samurai/ronin story with Japanese, Korean, Chinese, and Thai characters was hugely exciting.

Giannis Milonogiannis: Visually speaking, it’s exciting and refreshing to get to research clothing, weapons, vehicles and so on from a such a wide variety of cultures. Combined with the fantasy elements of the various creatures, the world Greg has given us to design is a joy to work with and a really fresh setting.

HMS: Thinking about the idea of building a new society on a hidden island, I’m reminded of theories of Utopias and the pros and cons of trying to start a new society from scratch. What are the good things and the difficult things about this enterprise for our characters?

GP: I’m intrigued by the way a massive crisis can bind people of different backgrounds together. And concurrently, how certain divisions can endure even when everything else seems to have changed. So in RONIN ISLAND, we have an ostensibly egalitarian community in which people from China, Japan, and Korea have come together in order to survive. At its founding, the community relied on everyone in the face of crisis — democracy and equality of opportunity was the only way forward. But a generation down the line, certain class and racial divisions remain. Everyone’s ostensibly got equal opportunities, but in practice, some folks have inherited much more. So there’s meaty stuff to explore there about the way an idealistic community struggles to live up to its own ideals.

Read the whole thing here!

And if you’re intrigued, please do ask your local comic shop to preorder issue #2 for you — the preorder deadline is March 18!

2019.03.06 – RONIN ISLAND #1 in stores today!

Thrilled about RONIN ISLAND #1 finally hitting comic book shops today, and huge thanks to everyone who’s picking it up and spreading the word! The book’s drawn by Giannis Milonogiannis with colors by Irma Kniivila, letters by Simon Bowland, and editing by Cameron Chittock and Amanda LaFranco and tells the story of a pair of young warriors thrust into crisis when their 19th century pan-Asian island community is confronted by an invading army — and a terrifying, mutated threat.

The reviews are blowing my mind — check ’em out!

“Pak brilliantly balances these elements in a concise and entertaining comic. Indeed, fans of stories like Momotaro (Peach Boy) will gravitate to RONIN ISLAND for its lush storytelling and illustration. However, the comic offers excitement for all.” — Comicsverse

Ronin Island #1 is a devastating strong opener of an issue. No panel is wasted, no narrative beat feels unused. It’s a quick, rapid-fire page turner that slowly invites the reader into the world and shines a little more light each time your eyes devour the stellar storytelling and beautiful art.” — Black Nerd Problems

Ronin Island starts as well as anything I’ve ever read.” — The Brazen Bull

Please do ask your local retailer to hold a copy for you today!

Please pre-order RONIN ISLAND #1 today!

I’m thrilled to announce that I’m writing RONIN ISLAND, a new creator-owned comic for BOOM drawn by the brilliant Giannis Milonogiannis with gorgeous colors by Irma Kniivila and sweet letters by Simon Bowland — and the final day to preorder with your local comic shop is this coming Monday, February 11! Here’s the solicit:

After a mysterious attack wipes out the major cities of 19th century Japan, Korea, and China, survivors from all three lands find refuge on a hidden island and build a new society. Hana, the orphaned daughter of Korean peasants, and Kenichi, son of a great samurai leader, have little in common except for a mutual disdain for the other. But these young warriors will have to work together when an army invades the island with shocking news: there is a new Shogun and the Island is expected to pay fealty in exchange for protection from a new enemy…a mutated horde that threatens to wipe out all humanity.

I’m super proud of the book and very much hope you’ll check it out. For more about the series, check out the interview at Sequential Tart. And you don’t have to take my word for it — check out what Central Maine’s Editors Note comic shop had to say!

Please do keep scrolling for some gorgeous covers and interior art from the team. And please do call your local comic shop today and ask them to preorder the book for you!