The Dark Horse Book of Hauntings by Scott Allie
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Another library find that works very well for October Scare Fest reading. Probably my most favorite type of horror/scary story is ghost stories. Even though ghost stories have been around, well, forever, they have the potential to be very diverse. And I feel that each one can feel different. I haven't read very many graphic novel-format ghost stories, so this was a new one for me. Wasn't sure what to expect, but I was pleasantly surprised.
I think that the authors successfully plumbed the deep waters of the ghost story, with each one in this volume having a distinct feel.
Truthfully, there were two prose narratives. The first was a classic, "Thurnley Abbey" by Perceval Landon. It feels very much like a classic story, and that's good. I feel that the actual ghost was a bit unclear, but I am not unappreciative of a ghost story that depends more on atmosphere than description of the actual scare-causing element. The accompanying illustrations were lovely. I liked it. Definitely gave me the classic ghost story infusion I enjoy so much. The other, "Spirit Rescue", was an interview with a medium IL Dreller. It was interesting hearing his encounters with real-life ghosts and his insight into the modern spiritualist movement. I do believe in ghosts in real life. And I watch all the ghost shows, so it was an interesting addition to this book.
As far as the graphic novel stories, I enjoyed them all. The artwork was uniformly well done, showcasing the distinctive styles of all the contributors. I enjoyed Mignola's addition, "Dr. Carp's Experiment," but that's no surprise. I actually liked all the stories. My favorite was "Stray", which is about a poor Beagle whose dog house is haunted and has to get some professional help from a ghost hunting dog. It was cute! Some of the stories were definitely eerie, although none were "I can't sleep" scary.
Overall a good collection, and a quick read. Recommend to fans of both graphic novels and ghosts.
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