- Hardcover: 136 pages
- Publisher: Canongate Books; Main edition (1 Feb. 2018)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1786892146
- ISBN-13: 978-1786892140
- Product Dimensions: 20.5 x 1.6 x 28.2 cm
- Average Customer Review: 5 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 531,739 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
In the Pines: 5 Murder Ballads Hardcover – 1 Feb 2018
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"Gripping . . . A wonderful collection of tales" (Comic Review)
"Pounding feet, terrified glances, a noose around someone's neck: with dramatic close-ups and a cinematic approach, there is much to savour in Erik Kriek's comic book" (De Volkskrant)
"Bloody and twisted, In The Pines takes you repeatedly into these ordinary worlds and lures you to their deepest shadows. In doing so you're masterfully shown the darkest sides of human nature in cinematic style. This isn't a read to feel warm and fuzzy over; it will unsettle, but step away from the daylight, wrap up warm, and dive in" (The Skinny)
"A brilliant idea . . . set, with apt affection for the Gothic mood, in the nineteenth-century American landscape" (Trouw)
"The thing [Kriek] does so well is to allow landscape and setting to create the mood. Even when the sun is shining, it's dark in the woods." (De Standaard)
An eerie and darkly beautiful graphic novelization of five classic murder ballads by the award-winning graphic artist Erik KriekSee all Product description
Top customer reviews
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All these songs have been brought to life visually with the skills of the very talented Erik Kriek, and the artwork is fantastic to look at, as well as being very atmospheric due to the colour palette used. After the re-workings of the songs into the visual aspect by Kriek, we also have an interesting piece by Jan Donkers, which explains the songs used and the ballad form itself.
This is I believe the first time that Canongate has dipped its toes into the world of graphic novels, and they have done so with some aplomb. Although this book has been published already on the Continent, it is great to at last see it in an English language version. This should be something that will be very much appreciated by fans of these ballads, so if you are one you will obviously want to get your hands on a copy. This will also make a great gift for others, and I am already working out how many copies I will have to get as presents throughout the year.
This really does bring to life some brilliant songs, in a new and exciting way and hopefully will do very well, especially as more people get to hear about this. If you have copies of the tracks that are used in these stories, it is great to listen to them whilst reading this.
I was very kindly provided with a review copy of this by the publisher via NetGalley for reviewing purposes.
The stories were dark and that's what I liked most about them. What do you expect from a book about murder ballads I suppose? The illustrations that accompanied each story were suitably coloured and drawn, and while I didn't LOVE them, I liked them a lot. My favourite stories were probably 'Where The Wild Roses Go' or 'The Long Black Veil' thanks to the dramatic twist endings. I've since had a listen to the songs themselves and realised some of these additions were down to Kriek himself, so that impressed me a lot. Some of them FELT short though, and that's because there wasn't a whole lot of dialogue in parts. Stories like this are always about mood and atmosphere of course, but I guess I would have liked to have seen a little more padding out. Still, I'm glad I read this. It has introduced me to a new genre of music and type of legend that I haven't looked too deeply into in the past.
I thought the illustrations were – for want of a better word – lovely. They definitely fit with the tone of the stories and they are certainly interesting to look at. This was the perfect medium in which to tell these stories.
The thing that stopped me from liking these stories as much as I otherwise might have was the lack of women. I think out of all the stories there’s one (maybe two?) in which a woman is the strong character. More often than not they are simply either murdered or cheating on their husbands with their best friends. I think this is representative of the source material as opposed to this particular author/illustrator but there were a good number of stories that could have been edited/adapted to reflect a more balanced world. Maybe that’s straying too much from the core ideas of the book and these stories, I’m not sure, but personally that was what hindered my enjoyment.
Graphic novels aren’t top of my reading list but I enjoyed this one as it was based on well-known murders. The illustrations are well done.
I haven’t listened to the accompanying music but would imagine it fits together well.
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