Okay, there aren’t any gorillas in it, but I can highly recommend The Book of Lost Souls — out now in trade paperback. It collects the first six issues of the comic written by J Michael Straczynski (Babylon 5, Spider-Man) and drawn by Colleen Doran (A Distant Soil, Sandman). It’s a potentially dark tale, but has hope at its heart.

Johnathon is a lost soul. Committing suicide off London Bridge in Victorian times, he is reborn in the modern day US, given the task of tipping other lost souls in one direction or the other: towards redemption or damnation. He’s joined in this task by the remarkable talking cat, Mystery, who has an extraordinary tale of his own to tell…

The events that occur throughout the book are largely a metaphor for the struggle of the artist within us all. Some give reign to their talent, others run away from it: Johnathon tips the scales.

The writing is witty, with each character well defined, and Colleen’s art is some of the strongest of her career. The splash pages are especially fine, full of her trademark attention to detail. Simply eye popping.