Review: A Gift for a Ghost by Borja Gonzalez

cover of A Gift for a GhostA Gift for a Ghost by Borja Gonzalez
Abrams Comic Arts (May 2020)
114 pages; $24.99 hardcover
Reviewed by Joshua Gage

Borja Gonzalez is a self-taught illustrator and strip cartoonist from Badajoz, Spain. His first published title, La Reina Orquidea, was a precious and haunting short piece which placed the author at the center of national attention. A Gift for a Ghost is his first long form work, recently translated into English and published for readers in the U.S.Continue Reading

Review: The Music Box 1: Welcome to Pandorient by Carbone and Gijé

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cover of The Music Box 1The Music Box 1: Welcome to Pandorient by Carbone and Gijé
Stone Arch Books (January 1, 2023)
64 pages; $7.99 paperback; $5.99 e-book
Reviewed by Joshua Gage

Having always been drawn to the world of children, Bénédicte Carboneill, aka Carbone, made the logical choice when it came time to decide on a profession by becoming a teacher. After joining the teaching ranks in 1995, she went on to become a principal before writing entered her life and quickly took over. In 2015, she tried her hand as a comics author with Le Pass’Temps (published by Jungle), taking on the pen name Carbone. She soon followed with La boîte à musique (Dupuis; The Music Box, Europe Comics, Capstone), and already has multiple other series in store, which readers can look forward to discovering over the coming years. Continue Reading

The Black Museum: The Ghost and the Lady by Kazuhiro Fujita

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cover of The Ghost and the LadyThe Black Museum: The Ghost and the Lady by Kazuhiro Fujita
Kodansha Comics (October 2016)
304 pages; $19.99 hardcover, $9.99 e-book
Reviewed by Danica Davidson

The Black Museum: The Ghost and the Lady is a peculiar story that mixes real history with very much made-up fantasy and horror. It opens with a woman in a long, black dress, holding candles and standing at the base of the stairwell, seemingly looking at the reader and asking if there’s interest in a tour of the black museum. After this atmosphere-setting image, the woman begins to give a tour, but things are thrown off when a ghost appears.Continue Reading

Interview: Richard Delgado on The Art of Dracula of Transylvania

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Ricardo Delgado grew up obsessed with monsters and has turned his childhood love into a career. He’s worked as a conceptual artist in Hollywood, published The Age of Reptiles graphic novel series, and is coming out with books on Dracula. After the success of his illustrated novel Dracula of Transylvania, his The Art of Dracula of Transylvania was put on Kickstarter where it quickly earned its goal. The Kickstarter continues until November 9, and Delgado spoke to Cemetery Dance about his early interests, his career in conceptual art and graphic novels, and why Dracula has obsessed him for so long.Continue Reading

Review: Dreams Factory by Jérôme Hamon and Suheb Zako

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cover of Dreams Factory

Dreams Factory written by Jérôme Hamon, art by Suheb Zako
Magnetic Press (September 13, 2022)
136 pages; $24.99 hardcover
Reviewed by Joshua Gage

 Following his studies at an American university and at business school, French author Jérôme Hamon began his professional life in New York as a financial analyst. Convinced that the life he wanted was elsewhere, he left the field two years later to travel around the world. Back in France, Hamon strung together a number of jobs in the movies, video games, and television. In parallel, he began to write his first comic book and graphic novel scripts. In 2008, Hamon went to Angouleme to present his first completed scripts, and it was there that he met artist Marc Van Straceele. The two would go on to collaborate on Yokozuna, a graphic novel on sumo wrestling in Japan (Kana, 2013). Following that, Hamon worked with artist Antoine Carrion on Nils, a saga halfway between Nordic mythology and the works of Miyazaki (Soleil, 2016). His newest graphic novel, in collaboration with freelance artist Suheb Zako, is Dreams Factory, a dark steampunk tale about mines, kidnapped children, and mechanical beasts.Continue Reading

Review: He Who Fights with Monsters by Francesco Artibani and Werther Dell’Edera

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cover of He Who Fights With MonstersHe Who Fights with Monsters by Francesco Artibani and Werther Dell’Edera
Ablaze (August 30, 2022)
144 pages; $24.99 hardcover
Reviewed by Joshua Gage

Francesco Artibani has long worked for the Walt Disney Company Italia, where he writes many tales for Topolino, PK, and W.I.T.C.H., of which he’s been a scriptwriter and story editor for three years, and has created the science fiction series Kylion. Werther Dell’Edera is an Italian comic book artist who provided interior art for the unreleased comic Aliens: Colonial Marines – Rising Threat for Dark Horse Comics, as well as Marvel Comics, and BOOM! Studios hit Something is Killing the Children. Their newest collaboration is the WWII graphic novel He Who Fights With MonstersContinue Reading

Review: Deserter by Junji Ito

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cover of Deserter by Junji Ito

Deserter by Junji Ito
VIZ Media (December 2021)
392 pages; $18.99 hardcover, $11.99 ebook
Reviewed by Danica Davidson

Deserter is a short story collection by Junji Ito, one of Japan’s most famous and successful horror manga creators. While you can see how he’s improved over time, the essence of his horror work is still here, and this is still definitely a worthy read.Continue Reading

Review: Over My Dead Body by Sweeney Boo

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cover of Over My Dead BodyOver My Dead Body by Sweeney Boo
HarperAlley (August 30, 2022)
240 pages; $24.99 hardcover
Reviewed by Joshua Gage

Sweeney Boo is a comic artist and illustrator living in Montreal, Canada.

When she’s not busy drawing witchy girls and hairless cats, she works with various publishers including BOOM! Studios, Archie Comics, IDW, Marvel, Image Comics and DC Comics. She is also the author and illustrator of graphic novel Eat, & Love Yourself. Her newest graphic novel is Over My Dead Body.Continue Reading

Review: Zatanna: The Jewel of Gravesend by Alys Arden and Jacquelin de Leon

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cover of ZatanaZatanna: The Jewel of Gravesend by Alys Arden and Jacquelin de Leon
DC Comics (July 26, 2022)
208 pages; $16.99 paperback
Reviewed by Joshua Gage

Alys Arden was raised by the street performers, tea-leaf readers, and glittering drag queens of the New Orleans French Quarter. She cut her teeth on the streets of New York and has worked all around the world since. The Casquette Girls, her debut novel, garnered over one million reads online before it was acquired by Skyscape.

Jacquelin de Leon is an illustrator and comics artist currently located in San Jose, California. She graduated with a BFA in illustration and entertainment design from Laguna College of Art and Design. Since graduating in 2015 she has become an illustration brand, self-publishing multiple books and working full-time to produce for her online shop and her YouTube channel. When not working on major projects, her favorite subjects are vivid and magical mermaids, sultry witches, and tattooed punk girls with colored hair. Their most recent graphic novel is Zatanna: The Jewel of Gravesend.Continue Reading

Review: Recursion’s End by Emma Groom

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Recursion’s End by Emma Groom
U-26 Comics (July 2022)
189 pages; $15.00 paperback
Reviewed by Joshua Gage

By day, Emma Groom is an undergrad biologist. She’s an entrepreneur specializing in aquaponics and exotic plants/animals with prior work experience in prairie restoration. By night, however, Groom is a comic book artist, and her newest graphic novel is the epic Recursion’s EndContinue Reading

Review: Black Mass Rising by Theo Prasidis and Jodie Muir

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cover of Black Mass RisingBlack Mass Rising by Theo Prasidis and Jodie Muir
TKO Studios (May 2022)
170 pages; $19.99 paperback; $7.99 e-book
Reviewed by Joshua Gage

Theo Prasidis is the author of The Doomster’s Monolithic Pocket Alphabet (Image Comics), Black Mass Rising (TKO Studios), and Swamp Dogs: House of Crows (Black Caravan). A fantasy devotee and cult media specialist by degree, he’s a zealous propagator of the magical and the mystical, the nostalgic and the psychedelic, the pulp and the weird. He lives a rather undramatic life in his hometown Drama, Greece, with his wife and two sons, heirs to a kingdom of horror books, heavy metal vinyl, and more band t-shirts than any sane person should ever be allowed to own. Jodie Muir is a freelance illustrator, based in the UK. Having previously worked in comics (Marvel, TKO) and concepting, she is currently an illustrator on Magic: The Gathering. Their newest book is Black Mass Rising, a sequel to Bram Stoker’s DraculaContinue Reading

Review: Blood on the Tracks Volumes 1-4 by Shuzo Oshimi

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cover of Blood on the Tracks volume 1Blood on the Tracks Volumes 1-4 by Shuzo Oshimi
Vertical Comics (2020)
$12.95 paperback
Reviewed by Danica Davidson

The covers of Blood on the Tracks show a loving mother and son. They don’t look like horror covers. But Blood on the Tracks is a truly amazing psychological horror manga series that simmers and unsettles.

The main character Seiichi is 13-years-old, and he wakes from a nightmare about finding a dead cat that he had been going up to pet, thinking it was alive. When he tells his mother about it, she explains that this was actually a very early memory of his. It’s not clear what happened to the cat, but it sets the stage for things to at first look sweet and cuddly, and then when you come up close, you discover something horrible.Continue Reading

Review: Cat’s Cradle: The Golden Twine by Jo Rioux

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cover of Cat's Cradle

Cat’s Cradle: The Golden Twine by Jo Rioux
First Second (June 21, 2022)
128 pages; $21.99 hardcover; $14.99 paperback
Reviewed by Joshua Gage

Jo Rioux is an author, an illustrator, and a life-long space cadet who flies by the seat of her rocket pants. Since graduating Sheridan College in illustration, she’s illustrated picture books and novels, but her favorite medium remains comics. Her debut graphic novel, Cat’s Cradle, was recently printed by First Second Books.Continue Reading

Review: Black Beth: Vengeance be Thy Name by Blas Gallego, Alec Worley, DaNi

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cover of Black Beth

Black Beth: Vengeance be Thy Name by Blas Gallego, Alec Worley, DaNi
Rebellion (June 7, 2022)
80 pages; $24 paperback
Reviewed by Joshua Gage

Black Beth was a one-time character published by Scream in the 1980s. She was a combination of Red Sonja and The Punisher, an armor-clad woman warrior who sought vengeance against the tyrants that slaughtered her love and her village. Aided by her mentor, the blind wild man Quido, she sought vengeance for 23 pages before disappearing into the memories of comic aficionados until 2016, when Rebellion purchased the rights from the original publisher. Alec Worley and artist DaNi have reinvented Black Beth for modern audiences in a dark fantasy tale that is sure to thrill readers. Continue Reading

Review: John Carpenter’s Night Terrors: Sour Candy by Kealan Patrick Burke and Jason Felix

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cover of Sour CandyJohn Carpenter’s Night Terrors: Sour Candy by Kealan Patrick Burke and Jason Felix
Storm King Productions (March 2022)
104 pages; $17.99 paperback
Reviewed by Blu Gilliand

Back in 2015, I had the pleasure of reviewing Kealan Patrick Burke’s then-new novella, Sour Candy. You can see the full review here, but I’ll include the plot summary from that review below:Continue Reading