★★★★ 4 Stars
Genre: Horror / Paranormal
Demographic: Middle Grade / Teen
Publication Date: September 26th, 2017
Graveyard Shakes focuses on Katia and Victoria, two sisters from the countryside who get accepted at a prestigious boarding school, and stand out like two bright yellow thumbs. Struggling to fit in, they eventually get into a fight and in their separation, run into two very unlikely parties – the ghost of a young boy and a corpselike child, Modie, whose father is keeping him alive through forbidden magic.
Charming and light-heartedly ghoulish, never fully stepping over the fence into morbid territory. It would make a fantastic book for Halloween. Though short, the story ends up being surprisingly sweet, and I liked Katia and Victoria’s characters. It would’ve been nice to see Katia and the ghost boy get a bit of further development, however, and I feel like there are key elements of the story that could’ve been elaborated on, such as the mysterious scarab that drains life.
The art is Edward Gorey-esque and painstakingly coloured in vibrant, supernatural blues, reds and violet shades. The style reminds me of early American animation and horror films, having that same “bright macabre” look.
Graveyard Shakes is a beautiful graphic novel with an interesting premise, though not as fleshed-out as it could have been, still makes for a entertaining read that has horror flavours without being gruesome.
Art – 5/5
Story – 3.5/5
Characterization – 4/5
General Score – 4/5