I didn’t think so much of the last Warren Ellis alternate sci-fi history I wrote about, Ministry of Space, so I’m happy to report that the new collected trade paperback of Ignition City is a whole lot better. Where Ministry of Space let its business be telling its alternate sci-fi history, Ignition City leaves that alternate history in the background to tell a character-based story.
This time it’s the mid-1950s, and the people of Earth have had regular flights into space and contact with aliens from Mars and Venus for years. That contact hasn’t gone so well, though, so all the governments of Earth have one by one suspended space flight, leaving only one spaceport operating, a government-free island called Ignition City. There live the inveterate spaceboys and spacegirls who went up in the early days and can’t get anyone to take them back—and there’s where Mary Raven, a young spacegirl herself, has to go to reclaim her just-deceased father’s things. It’s a straightforward, hoary tale of a new sheriff coming to spacetown, but well told.
No previews, but you can see samples of the artwork at the Flickr page.