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Locke & Key Volume 1: Welcome to Lovecraft HC (Locke & Key (Idw)) Hardcover – 7 Oct 2008


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Locke & Key Volume 1: Welcome to Lovecraft HC (Locke & Key (Idw)) + Locke & Key Volume 2: Head Games HC (Locke & Key (Idw)) + Locke & Key Volume 3: Crown of Shadows HC (Locke & Key (Idw))
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Product details

  • Hardcover: 152 pages
  • Publisher: IDW Publishing; illustrated edition edition (7 Oct 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1600102379
  • ISBN-13: 978-1600102370
  • Product Dimensions: 26.5 x 17.5 x 1.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 94,678 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Joe Hill is a recipient of the Ray Bradbury Fellowship and the winner of the A.E. Coppard Long Fiction Prize, William Crawford, World Fantasy, British Fantasy, Bram Stoker and International Horror Guild Awards. His short fiction has appeared in literary, mystery and horror collections and magazines in Britain and America.

Author photo (c) Shane Leonard

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Michael Finn on 23 April 2011
Format: Hardcover
The story begins.... hmmm, see that's the thing with this comic - I'm three words into this review and I've already lied to you. I'll try again.
So bad things happen to the Locke family and the survivors move out to a creepy house on an island. Some of the issues focus on one of the kids in particular. They're all traumatised or changed in some way. I think I liked Bode the best. He's the youngest kid.
The opening panel of this book shows a door. There's going to be a lot of doors in this book - it's one of the recurring archetypal symbols. So get used to the doors, and the locks, and the keys, and the reflections.
Sometimes you get a comic where either the art or the script is carried by the other. That isn't the case here. Both are great. Joe Hill tells a twisty dark story with well formed characters, good pacing and plenty of mystery and suspense. And Gabriel Rodriguez is just brilliant. I love his use of perspective on this book. Forget limited focal range - there's often stuff going on in the foreground and the background and degrees in-between. I think his brain is hooked up to one of those swoopy camera boom things, trying to get the angle that is best for the shot. Take the opening panels for instance. We can see the two guys at the door are hiding knives and a gun but the panel from Nina Locke's perspective just shows two goofy guys standing half in the doorway. Nina is looking past them at their truck. Full page panel showing Nina's cottage in the background and the truck in the foreground. In the back of the truck is a blood stained tarp covering two bodies. We can see all that - Nina can't. Genius. Ok some of it is directed by Joe Hill (I've seen his original script) but Rodriguez really does a great job of turning his directions into vibrant visuals.
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By Sam Quixote TOP 50 REVIEWER on 17 Nov 2009
Format: Paperback
I read this puppy when it first came out a few years ago and really wanted to like it, and didn’t. So, now the series is done, I thought I’d go back and give it another shot - maybe I was in the wrong frame of mind, or maybe I was just plain wrong, and this time I’d love it? Nope - still terrible, unfortunately.

Three kids - an older boy, his slightly younger sister, and their youngest sibling, a boy called Bode (and the only one whose name I could remember, purely for being such an odd name!) - have their father taken from them when one of his students comes to his summer home and murders him. The kids and their mum move from west coast to east coast back to the father’s childhood home - a massive, forbidding Lovecraftian mansion in the fictional Massachusetts town of Lovecraft (the thinking seems to be: it’s a “horror” comic so let’s remind readers of it by heavily referencing horror writer, HP Lovecraft).

The Lovecraftian mansion set in Lovecraft is of course haunted with all manner of ghosts and special keys unlock special doors that can warp space and time, even the temporal planes - when Bode walks through one door, his body is left behind and he becomes a ghost. And while the kids get over the trauma of their recent loss, their dad’s murderer is on the loose - and he’s coming to finish the job!

It’s definitely cool that Joe Hill is following in his dad’s footsteps and writing his own haunted house story but I have to say he’s certainly not as great a writer as Stephen King was when he was a younger man and Locke & Key isn’t a patch on The Shining. For one, Hill focuses far too much on the kids’ difficulty in getting over their dad’s death which is realistic but not at all compelling to read - I get it, they’re saaaaaaaad!
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Format: Kindle Edition
I saw this cover from half way across the shop and made a bee-line towards it. A flashing neon sign saying buy me would have been less likely to draw me in. A creepy looking house with an interesting looking key what wasn’t to love? Having Welcome To Lovecraft in the title makes it pretty clear what kind of story lies inside.

For me the mark of a good Lovecraftian tale has always been the way that normal horrors are blended with paranormal ones. For large parts of this story it was easy to forget that there was any supernatural elements involved. I got lost in the story and characters. So much so that I barely even noticed how long I was just staring at some of the stunning artwork. There is one page in particular where the young Bode draws his school holiday. It is perfectly rendered. Every aspect is how I have seen similar things from my kids. The obvious differences being the lack of horrific murders and out of body experiences. Even if you don’t want to read this book I’d recommend looking at that page. The rest of the artwork was also enthralling. After I finished reading this book I went back through it ignoring the words and just looking at the pictures.

This story was dripping with pain and anguish. The deeper story was only hinted at but I just have to find out more.

I have to buy the second part of this story. It has really tickled my fancy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Judge Holden on 7 Feb 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This comic came highly recommended but I have to say I was disappointed. I found the experience to be distinctly underwhelming and over very fast. The majority of characters were not particularly interesting or engaging and as for the horror aspects I just did not feel them. The main ghost who lives down the well was neither scary or original. The serial killer was just a pathetic lunatic. However the saving grace is the artwork which is superb. I can’t really recommend it unless you can get it very cheap.
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