How Polar Bear Tale 'Waluk' Brings Climate Change to Life

Waluk Reveal
Ana Ruiz/Magnetic Press
The upcoming graphic novel centers around two bears searching for food in a changing tundra.

Following up on the success of titles like Mr. Invincible, independent publisher Magnetic Press — which brings the best of international comics to the U.S. — is hoping its new title, Waluk, will introduce new readers not just to European comics, but also the plight of animals affected by global warming.

Waluk is named after its main character, a young polar bear who, along with an older bear named Eskimo, are forced to travel outside their home to find food and fertile hunting grounds as the world shifts because of climate change.

"When I first saw Waluk, my heart melted,” publisher Mike Kennedy told The Hollywood Reporter. “Magnetic has always been very supportive of wildlife conservation and education with some of our other popular titles, such as the Love series and Little Tails. We just love animals so much! And the cast of characters Ana and Emilio have created for this book will capture your imagination and adoration as well.”

Talking about the creation of the book, writer Emilio Ruiz said, “I have always been interested in the environment and, I have been passionate about natural spaces. I thought that an interesting story could be told, a kind of initiatory tale between two generations personified in bears and with the Arctic in the background. I was interested in a narrative aimed at the youngest, but that adults could like. The goal was always to write a tale that would give the opportunity to reflect on the great tragedy that would be the destruction of some of the richest habitats on earth and provide some hope to the reader."

Artist Ana Ruiz added, "My style always strives to adapt to the story I am telling. The Arctic is a minimalist landscape, with pure lines. I set out to reflect the vast landscapes and characters with limited use of graphics, leaving the treatment of volume for color. The colors I have used are clean in order to accentuate the feeling of virgin territory."

Waluk will be released by Magnetic Press in February. Keep reading for an exclusive preview of the book.