David Pepose did a fantastic job turning an old formula into something new and exciting with Going to the Chapel #1. The Bad Elvis Gang crashes a wedding looking for a necklace named the Heart of Dresden valued at over $250 million dollars. However, this smash and grab isn’t so cut and dry. Emily, the bride has cold feet — her fiancé is professional but plain, and Emily’s family is so dysfunctional that if you put them and the Bad Elvis Gang inside a wrestling ring for a good ole slobberknockin’ battle royale, my money is on Emily’s family with Grandma raising the belt in the end. The first issue ended with a cliffhanger and me craving for more!
What’s the book about?
Said heist is still in progress, but the plot thickens. We find out the leader of the Bad Elvis Gang and Emily have a secret past. They dated years ago and the robber, Tom, broke up with Emily with a text message. And that is when it clicks with Emily that he has been into crime the entire time.
The police have surrounded the church and are looking to take down the gang once and for all. The guests are getting bored and the other gang members are getting hot and restless. Emily’s emotions take a bit of a twist and she offers to be Tom’s hostage so they can attempt to escape. And this is just the beginning!
Pepose is on point with his script. The characters are so well developed they almost make you forget about the heist, but they are deserving of the attention. There is much more going on here than the robbery. The relationship between the leader of the Bad Elvis Gang, Tom and Emily is beginning to heat up. The groom, who is no John McClane, is sketching the interior of the church looking for a way to save the day, and the Sam Elliott-esque sheriff is outside waiting to finally take down this gang. There’s a lot unfolding here and it’s going to be exciting to see what happens next.
The artwork by Gavin Guildry and Liz Kramer melds with the story. The detail of each character is just as sharp as their personality. The colors are gorgeous and contribute to giving off a ’90s action movie vibe. The little details add additional pulp, such as the visual sound effects and money flying out of a car as it zooms away.
I love this story so far and I never purposely look for something to nitpick in anything that I read. However, one thing did catch my attention in this issue. There is a small shootout with disregard to the safety of a hostage that had me scratching my head. The police are familiar with this gang, so I must believe they have pulled down some major scores and the police are desperate to be rid of them at any costs. Even if it means risking the lives of the innocent.
Pepose does an outstanding job displaying how selfish and shallow parts of society have become when it comes to technology and social media. The robbers take everyone’s phone, but one of the bridesmaids still has one. She claims to be an influencer, so she has a backup phone that she busts out just to capture this moment on Instagram.
The other hostages see the phone and immediately want it for their use. The groomsman wants to know how the Clippers are doing, Emily’s father needs to check his stocks, Emily’s mom wants to bid on eBay, and we can’t forget Grandma as she requests the phone to look at porn. I absolutely love all the characters.
Going to the Chapel #2 is a lot fun. If you are into heist and crime stories, then you need to add this book to your pull list. Wild and eccentric characters, fast-paced action, and plenty of wit and humor, Going to the Chapel has it all!
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