Two volumes ago in The Three Suns of Vinea, Yoko Tsuno’s great friend Khany decided to return with her people to their home planet, in a solar system many thousands of light years away from Earth. Making their abandoned home habitable again is a huge, complicated mission dealing with one potential disaster after another and another threat has emerged. Ixo is one of seven moons orbiting K3, a giant planet in the Vinea system. Ixo is mostly made of ice. It is the perfect storage facility for a vast array of Vinea’s deadliest technologies, too destructive to remain on their home planet where they were created. Utterly inert and abandoned for almost two million years, the dead moon has been a lifeless, dark and very safe repository. So who is responsible for a light now visible on the surface?

Roger Leloup continues the intergalactic adventures of his heroine Yoko, as she is once again called on to help the Vineans deal with a mystery that could lead to the destruction of their planet if the stockpile of incredibly powerful, radioactive weaponry created by their own ancestors is used against them. There is more of Leloup’s customarily spectacular spaceships, machinery and high-tech gadgets as Yoko and her friends Vic and Pol encounter another remnant of the millennia-old Vinean exodus.

This story is plotted simply enough for young readers, but the weight of complex explanations and technobabble that surround all the detailed drawings may be a bit much for them, and will require lots of patience to follow. There is a little humour to lighten the mood of the action, but overall it’s straight intrigue and jeopardy to keep kids wondering just how Yoko is going to solve this latest challenge. Her deep space exploits continue in the next volume The Archangels of Vinea.