Friday, January 11, 2019

ReadItDaddy's Comic / Graphic Novel of the Week - Week Ending 11th January 2019: "Conspiracy of Ravens" by Leah Moore, John Reppion and Sally Jane Thompson (Dark Horse Comics)

Our Comic / Graphic Novel of the Week this week is a darkly delicious and potent mix of mystery, magic and suspense that centres around a creepy old house...
We're always on the look out for really cool late middle grade / early YA stuff to review in our comics coverage, and it's surprisingly difficult to find stuff that hits just the right balance of spookiness, so it's not too disturbing for C.

She loves graphic novels and comics, and particularly loves stories that centre around creaky old buildings full of secrets and mystery.

So we were delighted when John himself got in touch with us about "Conspiracy of Ravens" by Leah Moore, John Reppion and Sally Jane Thompson.

Young Anne's beloved Aunt unexpectedly dies - a family tragedy no one foresaw. But when Anne is called in to a reading of the will, she swiftly discovers that her Aunt has left her Ravenhall - her ancestral home - and a mysterious locket.

Anne's life is thrown into turmoil after the death of her beloved Aunt. But that's just the start of her adventure...!

Anne is currently at boarding school but is strangely drawn to the old place after her Aunt's funeral. Swiftly dodging a rather sleazy property clearance expert (the mysterious and entirely sinister Mr Adder - who definitely isn't what he seems) Anne isn't quite sure what she's taken on - but quickly discovers that her Aunt had many secrets, and that Anne isn't the only girl who is linked to Ravenhall.

After finding a strange nook in the house full of hidden treasures, each etched with a mysterious bird symbol Anne is spooked by the mysterious house servant still living in the old place (who has a secret of her own that's a brilliant reveal moment later on in the story).

Things take a sinister turn when Anne unwittingly discovers that her locket imbues her with mystical powers. And she's not the only one...Other girls are drawn to Ravenhall too!

The crumbling house is full of secrets for young Anne. 

This one had us both gripped from the get-go (in fact C read it through three times before I got a look-in! Always the way with cool stuff like this!)

It reminded me of fab 'spooky' comics from the 1970s and 80s like Misty and Scream. As we said at the top of the review, it's not horrific or disturbing, and is perfect for ages 10 up (possibly even younger if you don't mind your kids reading slightly darker stuff).

Brilliantly spooky, atmospheric and beautifully paced with memorable characters, the coolest illustrations and such a satisfying pay-off, we cannot recommend this one highly enough.

There are some fab process illustrations from Sally at the end of the book too, so don't forget to look out for them!

Find out more about this fab graphic novel over on the Dark Horse website:

Sum this comic up in a sentence: Gorgeously crafted and dark, perfect for tweens who love supernatural mysteries, fantastic strong female characters and spooky houses!

"Conspiracy of Ravens" by Leah Moore, John Reppion and Sally Jane Thompson is out now, published by Dark Horse Comics (kindly supplied for review).