Friday, October 04, 2013

Booknote: Hellboy: The Midnight Circus

Mike Mignola, Hellboy: the Midnight Circus. Milwaukie, OR: Dark Horse Comics, 2013. (link to publisher).

At a little over 50 pages, this was a charming and easy read. Children often dream of running away and joining the circus. As a young boy, Hellboy is in many ways the typical young boy, and he manages to run away from the BPRD compound. In his night adventure, he comes across a circus in the middle of the woods. What's a young boy to do? Well, he goes to explore it of course. But is this an earthly circus or one from the hellish regions below?

The story by Mike Mignola (who also does the cover art) offers a nice, simple narrative with an ethereal quality and a sense of suspense and wonder. The art by Duncan Fegredo enhances the story, giving it the touch of darkness it deserves. I loved the circus panels on this one, and I found myself wishing for more. Fans of the comic will enjoy this tale from Hellboy's childhood. I think for casual readers, or readers who may only know Hellboy from the recent films, this is a good entry point to the comic. This is definitely one to read, though it did feel a bit short. I did enjoy it.

Public libraries will want this one for their collections, especially if they have other Hellboy comics in their collections. Academic libraries with pop culture and/or recreational reading collections could add this as well. I am certainly ordering it for our library. The publisher describes it as a book for kids 8 and up, and I would tend to agree. I think most kids, if they like some of their fiction a bit "spooky" or they are already Hellboy fans, will like it. This is a good one for readers of all ages.

If you ask me, 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Disclosure note: Once again, I get to tell you I read this as an e-book via NetGalley provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. There, that should keep The Man happy. Book is scheduled for release on Octobe 23, 2013.

No comments: