Astonishing X-Men: Gifted collects the first six issues of the critically acclaimed X-book. Astonishing X-Men follows Cyclops and Emma Frost as they attempt to rebuild Xavier’s school and reorganize the X-Men team. Kitty Pryde makes her return as a teacher and member of the X-Men, which is sure to make all the fans very happy. We also see the return of Colossus, whom is brought back to life by the story’s atagonist, Ord.

Gifted, written by Joss Whedon, is a treat to read. Whedon, a multiple time Eisner award winner, is in my opinion, one of the best comic writers out there. The characters in this book are so well written that you’ll find yourself definitively knowing which characters you love and which characters you just can not stand. One character that I found to be exceptionally well written is Emma Frost. I haven’t read a single X-book that captures what I believe to be her true personality more than Whedon does. You’ll constantly find yourself loathing Emma for her stuck up personality, but at the same time, you’ll find yourself attracted to her for the same reason. That fact alone makes me love this book even more. Artist John Cassaday also does a stand up job. His images are crisp and always exciting to the eye. I never once saw a single panel that was boring or ugly. All in all, the team of Whedon and Cassaday hit an artistic homerun with this book.

In closing, I can’t help but beg you to read the Astonishing X-Men series. The TPBs are widely available and Gifted is your starting place. Even though Whedon and Cassaday are no longer on the book, the series has continued to strive. If you haven’t read the beginning of this great series, then you’re truly missing out on a fine piece of art and a wonderfully told story.

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