Hot Brass, Pharaoh’s Gold by John Pence, Joe Koziarski – Review

If you haven’t already seen our Fandom Funding post about the Hot Brass Kickstarter, check it out and see how you can help support these comic creators! As an avid reader, I was excited to review this graphic novel and share my thoughts with you in a spoiler-free review.

Cowboys vs. Mummies: An all-ages throwdown for the ages!


San Francisco, 1919. A mysterious stranger is seen loitering around the Treasures of King Mekhenaten museum exhibit. A few days later, he acts on his near-foolproof plan to rob the exhibit’s train en route to its next destination.

While his plan may have been fool-resistant, he did not adequately account for the foolishness of his nephews and fellow outlaws, who accidentally awaken the tyrannical King Mekhenaten’s mummy from its millennia of slumber.

When word of the train robbery reaches the Bakersfield sheriff’s office, a posse sets out to apprehend the outlaws and recover the cargo.

Out there in the desert, outlaws, lawmen, cursed mummies, a bunch of city-slick longhairs, and a wild half-puma little girl collide in a fast-talkin’, sharp-shootin’, two-fisted adventure wilder than a palomino.

Hot Brass, Pharaoh’s Gold first appeared as a digital-only surprise around Christmastime last year, but it’s grown into something bigger, more fun, and still kid-friendly in this Kickstarter exclusive deluxe edition featuring development art and creator commentary (and maybe a surprise or two), and it will be able in both trade paperback and limited edition hardcover formats.


Hot Brass takes readers on a fun adventure set in the wild west as a group of bandits trying to snag cargo full of artifacts. What seems like a simple mission, soon turns for the worst as King Mekhenaten awakens along with his army of mummy bodyguards and starts to wreak havoc on those who try to stand in their way.

The first thing that struck me about this story was the nostalgic art style and nods to classic elements of Westerns from the character types to the historical setting. It made the reading experience immersive and helps its target audience (children) jump right into the story. It has a fast-paced narrative that keeps you engaged and wondering what will happen next.

For someone who doesn’t typically read Westerns, it was easy for me to jump right into the story. It had a premise that had me instantly hooked and enjoyable characters including the villains of the story that made me chuckle out loud at times. I think for younger readers who may want to try reading this genre, this would be a good pick to get them interested in stories with a wild west setting.  It’s comical, fun, and action-packed with the fight scenes with the mummies being my favorite parts of the story.

I also loved the attention to detail of the artwork. The mummies speak to each other in hieroglyphs which I thought was an extra special touch. Usually, previous stories with mummies that I’ve encountered just make grumbling noises, and this factor gave them some depth in the story.


Hot Brass is an entertaining comic for readers of all ages and I recommend it to any reader who loves a good tale of thrills and new adventures.

Check out more by Unlikely Heroes Studios here

About Rachel Moulden

Rachel is a fandom nerd who loves to create new stories. Outside of Fandom Spotlite you can find her writing books, chatting about all things pop culture related, and gushing about all things bookish on her book blog, Life of a Female Bibliophile. When Rachel is not busy writing you can find her jamming out to anime OSTs, indulging in a good cup of coffee, or watching too many K-Dramas. Check out her middle-grade debut novel (Lost Love: My First Boyfriend) available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobo. You can follow her on Twitter at @bibliophilelyfe and Instagram at @lifeofafemalebibliophile.

View all posts by Rachel Moulden

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