Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Monstress #1” as Want to Read:
Monstress #1
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Monstress #1

(Monstress (Issues) #1)

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  2,541 ratings  ·  430 reviews
Steampunk meets Kaiju in this original fantasy epic for mature readers, as young Maika risks everything to control her psychic link with a monster of tremendous power, placing her in the center of a devastating war between human and otherworldly forces.
Comics, 1st Printing, 72 pages
Published November 4th 2015 by Image Comics (first published November 2015)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Monstress #1, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Possum Paderau I just read the first issue and it had semi-nudity (Maika was nude but had no nipples/labia, there was a lot of cleavage) but there is a LOT of…moreI just read the first issue and it had semi-nudity (Maika was nude but had no nipples/labia, there was a lot of cleavage) but there is a LOT of torture/violence/blood/gore/death. I wouldn't recommend it for children. I'd say it's best for 16+ but I have a pretty liberal view of what older teenagers are mature enough to handle, so most people would probably say 18+(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.21  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,541 ratings  ·  430 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Monstress #1
Nov 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-sff-faves
This issue was a phenomenal introduction to this world. It's feisty, it's creepy, it's bloody and it's beautiful and I have to say that I couldn't believe how much I enjoyed this which I picked up on a whim. I hadn't heard anything about this before it was released, in fact the only reason I picked it up was for the stellar cover art, but my goodness I am thrilled that I did because already i have a new favourite series and I am desperate for the next one to come out.

This story focuses on a
Heidi The Reader
I wasn't impressed by Monstress. The story is downright confusing until the end of each issue when the reader is given a history lesson (info dump) by a talking cat with multiple tails. Let me attempt a summary of just the beginning (it gets really complicated after that):

There's a teen. There's something special about her but we're not sure what. She's purchased by a religious cult with others of her kind. They're shipped to a prison fortress and tortured- for what, who knows? Maika (the girl)
There is more hunger in the world than love.

Gorgeous Art *_*
monstress 5a


plenty Violence - kind of psycho and sadistic related than war related.

Mysterious Heroine, who can kick ass, (with just one arm)

No romance , until now.

¿Post-apocaliptic? not sure yet. Though is between post-war

Se presenta a Maiko en medio de una subasta de esclavos, y es ... adquirida o más bien requisada por una "bruja", lo cual parece ser el código para seudocientificos realizando horrendos experimentos en seres no considerados
Beatrice Masaluñga
I received a copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Things that I love on Monstress:

* Artwork: It's absolutely fantastic. With its Asian theme and intricate details. Damn. I can't help admiring it. IT'S JUST BEAUTIFUL.
* Heroine: Maika is a one and a half armed Arcanic (from what I understood, half-human, half-monster), with special powers who survived a war between humans and monsters. She is such a badass heroine and she really surprised me.
* Plot : It's a very intriguing story
Nov 09, 2015 rated it really liked it


This has beautiful artwork and a poignant and intense storyline.

But at the same time, it's so violent and gruesome that I'm not sure I can continue on with it.

I'll see how I feel when Issue 2 comes out.
Thanks to Netgalley and Diamond Book Distributors for providing the ARC in exchange for an honest review.

To be honest, I didn't expect to like this one.
I'm not really into comics and I never was, but I thought I'm gonna give it a try, because it's only 72 pages and the blurb sounded interesting.
The artwork is absolutely beautiful. I think, it took me even more time to look at the drawings than to read the texts in the speech bubbles. But that doesn't mean that the storyline was less interesting.
Absolutely gorgeous artwork with a unique story.

This is a great first issue/entry into a new series and it kind of makes me feel dumb for not reading Marjorie M. Liu's books before now.
Dec 27, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 1-star

I feel kind of bad because other people really like it and I genuinely think it's shit. I can't figure out what's good about this at all. HOW IS THIS GOOD? I'M SO CONFUSED. With other 1 star books I can understand why other people like it, but with this one I have no idea.

I was watching a booktube video and this person who pretty much always gives books 4/5 stars gave this 3 and I was like ooh. She said she didn't understand what was happening, but the art was nice. That literally sums

I would like to thank NetGalley and Image Comics for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.


Now I will admit that I had never read any of Marjorie Liu’s comic books before, even though most of them were highly praised. So, when I heard that Marjorie Liu was creating a new comic book series called “Monstress” and I had heard a lot of good things about this series, I just had to check this series out!

What is this story about?

The story starts off with
"How does one whom history has made a monster, escape her monstrosity? How does one overcome the monstrousness of others without succumbing to a rising monstrousness within?"
If someone would ask me to recommend steampunk. THIS WOULD BE MY IMMEDIATE ANSWER.

Graphics wise, Monstress is a detailed work of art highly referencing art deco styles laced in ancient Asian trinkets. It's fcking beautiful. If you're gonna read this, please don't breeze through the panels swiftly, I'd like everyone to
Apr 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Steampunk fans who love a hint of badassery

To quote the poets, "we're fucked".

Maika, an Arcanic outcast, a survivor of the gruesome war between humans and hybrid Arcanics which killed millions. Hungry for blood and desperate answers she seeks to stealthily destroy everything in her wake to find out more about her mother, her past and the power that grows poisonous within her.
Nothing will stop her, not even death. Hence, with her killer one-hand moves and crafty mind she infiltrates Zamara, a city where human witches capture Arcanic
Barbara (The Bibliophage)
Monstress is beautifully drawn with tremendous detail. The world building is just beginning, yet is quite intriguing. Our main character is Maika who's on a quest both internally and externally. She's fighting the monster inside her, and has gone after witches who are caught in a bloody war. At least that's what I think so far. I'm sure there are many twists and turns to come. The characters are diverse. Some human, some half human, and some monsters. The setting is Asian in feel but an ...more
Jun 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This review was originally posted on The Speculative Herald:

Monstress is absolutely stunning comic with a dark story and artwork that is simply gorgeous. I really can’t stress enough how much I loved all the imagery. I will readily admit to being a complete novice when it comes to comics, having read pretty much just Saga and Locke and Key, but even as a novice I feel secure in saying that this is one comic that you just can’t miss. Even if you are not



Well maybe not too far---iluvu

ERMAGAWD! LIU! LIU! I just want to hug her so tight.




What i love best?!



LAWD. Who says quality and diversity can't go hand in hand...

Don't get me wrong, this book is by no means light-hearted fluff. There is violence and horror, and this
Aug 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
To quote the poets... We're fucked.

The artwork is absolutely gorgeous. Stunning.
The storyline is dark and intriguing.
The main character is a freaking badass female.
The anthropomorphous animals —seriously, I don't know how to call them— are, like, super cute.

I cannot wait to read the next issue. I'm completely hooked.
Irene Sim
Meet Maika. I still can't fathom what exactly she is but she constantly has this pissed-off expression so she must be angry about something.
 photo Maika 1_zpsrhznndjg.jpg

Though the art is amazing, the colors and designs definitely steampunk with eastern influences, the dialogues didn't thrill me. I'm afraid Saga, Vol. 1 has raised the bar too high for me.

But what is it about these cats? I love them, especially the talking ones with two tails.
 photo cat 1_zpsav8ttcjg.jpg
Dec 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
Sana Takeda's artwork is absolutely stunning. It's hard to assess the story from the first issue since it's an introduction and not that long, but I am really curious about Maika's past and her connection to the monster. I'd like to read the collection containing the first six issues that is coming out later this month.

Full (But Still Brief) Review:

Reread in July 2016.
Jun 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: gn
Holy crap. The art in this is breathtaking, with vivid detail and amazing colors. The artist is also remarkably talented in conveying emotion in faces, which is always a bonus.

I'm so thrilled to start this. So far, it's a great start.
Chelsies Crazy4Books
Jul 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
I got this graphic novel from Netgalley for an honest review. It was all so amazing I cant recommend it enough. The premise is kind of hard to explain. Its about a girl who infiltrates a witch stronghold by posing as a slave in the hopes of finding someone they took from her.

This is definitely one of the better graphic novels Ive read. I absolutely loved the artwork. It was very detailed and rich. The art told as much of the story as the writing. It was so beautiful and captivating. It
Alex ☣ Deranged KittyCat ☣

The art style in Monstress #1 is absolutely, amazingly beautiful! I'm just in love with it.

I'm not so sure about the story, tho. There is this stunning, vengeful 17 years old girl, Maiko Halfwolf, who tries to punish those who had something to do with her mother's death. This brings her to the nuns, some kind of witches who make the most sadistic experiments on an alien (?) race, the Arcanics.

By the way, Maiko is Arcanic and has only one hand left. That doesn't stop her from kicking some
Oct 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
Story: 3.75

The art is gorgeous, the story is interesting enough for now: me happy. I've bought the first three issues and if I like them all I'll buy the first volume in July.

The issues are quite short, so I can't say much about the plot for now, but it seems quite interesting. Artwork aside the characters seem pretty much awesome, especially the female characters. There's also some diversity which doesn't hurt at all. This issue is quite violent though, so if you have a weak
Jeannette Nikolova
Jan 30, 2016 rated it really liked it
[Image Comics] FIRST ISSUES: The Good (Full review on the WondrousBooks blog.)

Monstress is not exactly usual for comic books as I know them and it’s rather reminiscent of manga. The story itself has some Eastern themes such as a kitsune-like cat with two tails and so on. The characters are on the scale from “weird” to “a sort of cute tiny little cyclops that gets killed pretty fast”.

If you want something both magical and sexy, this is for you.

But also if you go “Awww” at humanoid fox babies,
Aug 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, comics, horror
Incredible art. I'm honestly floored by the direction, consistency in tones and level of detail.
Adding to that a very intriguing steampunk cosmic horror mix with dynamic action and drama, I can only applaud the author and artist both.
Sad Sunday (If I say it's bad, it's bad)
Very beautifully drawn but the plot and the story are somehow confusing.
Oct 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comic-issues
Hello new favorite comic series.
Jul 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
This book review, along with other shriekfests reviews can be found on my blog here


I received a free copy of this book via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

Okay, first of all, this comic’s artwork is GORGEOUS. Just wanted to put that in there because it’s the one word I can use to describe it.

Second of all, I have no idea how to even write a decent review for this, so let’s just list my thoughts in bullet form, shall we (because obviously one can never go wrong with using lists).

Michelle Curie
Aug 08, 2016 rated it liked it
"When we were slaves, we knew endless hunger. What I feel now is worse. Why can't I stop? Why don't I want to?"

What made pick this comic up was its beautiful cover and now that I am actually writing this, I feel silly for calling this beautiful. I mean, it somehow is, but it's also really bloody and disturbing.

Set in an alternate 1900's Asia, this is the story of teenage girl Maika, who has lived through war times, and who shares a psychic link with a monster of tremendous power, a connection
Portia Lynn (itsportiasbooks)
Nov 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
First, lets talk about this artwork:

So. Gorgeous!!! Whats even better, is this first issue is longer than usual, almost double issue, so there is much more to admire. Beautiful.

The only reason I gave this 4 instead of 5 is because there is so much still to be revealed, so much that I don't know. But it has an amazing start. I have a feeling I am going to adore this heroine (anti-heroine? who knows, we shall see...).

I am absolutely excited that we are getting more comics with bad ass
Jul 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, netgalley
I received this book from Netgalley for my honest review.

It's been a while I've read comics, but this one is plain and simple fantastic!
The graphic is excellent and the detail wonderful!
Each table is a small work of art!
The story is also very, very interesting and the change between the action parts and the revealing past parts is perfectly balanced!There're not enough words to described how much I enjoyed reading (and looking) this series!
Beautiful, haunting and poignant.
Very recommended
Nov 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda make a great team. It's a bigger first issue, which was a clever way to start Monstress—I'm definitely hooked. Though I might wait for the whole first volume to come out, because I don't enjoy reading separate issues as much. We'll see.

Definitely recommended.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Paper Girls #1
  • Die #1
  • Romulus #1
  • Alex + Ada #1
  • The Steel Prince #4 (Shades of Magic Graphic Novels #4)
  • Remission (Prophet, #1)
  • The Wicked + The Divine #1
  • Saga #53
  • Saga #54
  • Blackbird #2 (Blackbird, #2)
  • Tropic of the Sea
  • She Could Fly #1
  • Moonshine #1
  • Rat Queens: Deluxe Edition, Volume 1 (Rat Queens: Deluxe Editions, #1)
  • Outer Darkness #1
  • A Game of Thrones: The Graphic Novel, Volume Four (A Song of Ice and Fire: The Graphic Novels, #4)
  • Extremity #1
See similar books…
New York Times bestselling and award-winning writer Marjorie Liu is best known for her fiction and comic books. She teaches comic book writing at MIT, and she leads a class on Popular Fiction at the Voices of Our Nation (VONA) workshop.

Ms. Liu is a highly celebrated comic book writer. Her extensive work with Marvel includes the bestselling Dark Wolverine series, NYX: No Way Home, X-23, and Black

Other books in the series

Monstress (Issues) (1 - 10 of 27 books)
  • Monstress #2
  • Monstress #3
  • Monstress #4
  • Monstress #5
  • Monstress #6
  • Monstress #7
  • Monstress #8
  • Monstress #9
  • Monstress #10
  • Monstress #11
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »
“Too bad people don't rebuild themselves so easily.” 3 likes
More quotes…