Review: Pax Samson Vol. 1: The Cookout

Title: Pax Samson Vol. 1: The Cookout
Author: Rashad Doucet, Jason Reeves (illustrator)
Genre: Middle Grade, Graphic Novel, Fantasy
Publisher: Oni Press
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: August 3, 2021
Rating: ★★★★


Goodreads Synopsis:

Pax Samson: The Cookout is the first volume in a new action-packed, fantasy trilogy that depicts a world struggling to find peace in the midst of threats, and a young superhero chef torn between following his passion and following in his family’s footsteps. 

When it comes to the kitchen, no one knows cooking better than twelve-year-old Pax Samson. He’s a hero when it comes to testing recipes and supplying copious amounts of Dragon Noodle Soup at his family’s cookouts. It’s tough being a master chef, though, when the rest of his family are world-famous superheroes, and they expect Pax to take up the beacon to keep the world safe with his telekinetic powers. 

Pax’s home planet of Soltellus is home to all walks of life, including humans, gods, as well as elves, orcs, dragons, sprites and other fantasy races known as the “Enchanted” all living in a modern society similar to our own. Among them is the Samson family, led by the fearless and mighty Grandma Samson, the greatest superhero to ever live and the person responsible for always saving Soltellus when trouble strikes. She’s been doing it for hundreds of years, but she’s ready for the younger generation of Samsons, including Pax, to step up. 

When the mad god Odin, long-time enemy to the Enchanted race and arch-rival to Grandma, resurfaces in another attempt to regain power, Pax will attempt to put his training into practice, but ends up just making things worse. Tempted to hang up the superhero cape and stick to the kitchen, Pax faces the toughest decision yet when a legendary savior of the Enchanted people arrives, along with a startling discovery that there might be parts of the Soltellus history that are wrong. Pax, determined to protect his family and friends, will do everything he can to stop the new threats set on disrupting the peace between humans and the Enchanted.


Pax Samson is a twelve-year-old superhero who loves to cook. He comes from a big family of superheroes, but cooking is his passion. His family is led by Grandma Samson, the strongest and most powerful superhero. Now Pax, his sister, and his cousins have to step up and help the family defeat his grandma’s enemy, the ancient god Odin.

I love superhero stories. Pax was a fun character because he was trying to figure out where he fit in with his family and in the superhero world. He felt torn between following his family’s legacy and doing what he wanted, which was cooking. Luckily, he was able to do both.

The art was brightly coloured. The superheroes had distinct costumes in vibrant colours. I liked seeing the different generations depicted in the art. There were some flashbacks that had monochromatic illustrations, so they stood out against the present story.

Pax Samson is a fun middle grade graphic novel!

Thank you Oni Press for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Pizazz by Sophy Henn

How to be a Supervillain by Michael Fry

Have you read Pax Samson Vol. 1? What did you think of it?


Author: jilljemmett

Jill lives in Toronto, Canada. She has studied English, Creative Writing, and Publishing. Jill is the creator and content producer of Jill’s Book Blog, where she has published a blog post every day for the last four years, including 5-7 book reviews a week. She can usually be found with her nose in a book.

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