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Chilling Tales of Horror

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 6 Up—Dark Graphic Tales includes "The Gold Bug," "The System of Doctor Tarr and Professor Fether," and "The Fall of the House of Usher." Poe is a master of the grotesque, a purveyor of insanity, and elements of his work are well suited for visual depiction. Serratosa's emotive, eerily colored line drawings, cryptography, bugs, buried treasure, pirates, insane asylums, and crypts make for a creepy crawly delight. Chilling Tales contains Guy de Maupassant's "The Hand," Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu's "Sir Dominick's Bargain," Edward Lucas White's "The House of Nightmare," John William Polidori's "The Vampire," Catherine Crowe's "House B… on Camden Hill," Robert Louis Stevenson's "The Body Snatcher," and Edgar Allan Poe's "The Black Cat." Rodríguez precedes each story with a brief biography of the writer, which is beneficial to horror fans who otherwise might not have encountered these 18th - and 19th- century authors. One possible drawback to this work is Rodríguez's cartoon portrayals, which can defuse highly emotional moments and distract readers from otherwise good horror fiction. Most exceptional is his treatment of "The House of Nightmare." His rendering of the ghost boy will haunt readers long after the final scene. Horror and sci-fi fans alike will enjoy Sierra's interpretation of Frankenstein. This adaptation holds true to Mary Shelley's classic story and, with it, her desire to "speak to the mysterious fears of our nature." Readers witness young Frankenstein's perilous desire to make "miracles realities" and his efforts to unlock the secrets of death. Ribas's black-and-white illustrations work well to drive the story and create an overwhelming sense of alienation and loss.—Lisa Gieskes, Richland County Public Library, Columbia, SC
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781464401053
  • Publisher: Enslow Publishers, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/1/2012
  • Pages: 96
  • Lexile: GN590L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.70 (w) x 9.60 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 27, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Book Review: "Chilling Tales of Horror" by Pedro Ridriguez

    Few things go better together than scary stories and graphic novels. Pedro Rodriguez leads you on a tour of some of the great horror stories that often serve as horror motifs today. The Handtakes on the revenge of the disembodied hand. Sir Dominick's Bargain is one of the origins of the deal with the devil motif. The Vampire by John William Polidori introduces the free wheeling lifestyle of the vampire. The book also includes short tales from Robert Louis Stevenson, Edgar Alan Poe and others.

    The book gives the reader a broad introduction to the field of Gothic horror, a genre to which middle school readers naturally gravitate. Brief biographies of each author are included, which allows for the reader to further explore the writings of the authors.

    Parents will appreciate that this is graphic horror written in a PG style. It is a relatively safe read for all students fifth grade and up. One seldom sees violence or gore, but only the aftermath. It is creepy, not necessarily creepy. It is a great use of the graphic novel to introduce a great literary genre.

    Pedro Rodriguez tells the stories with contemporary language and art, yet capturing the period in word and art. The one critique that I would have of this work concerns the inking and lettering of the book.

    If my memory serves me right, the original graphic novels were created by a blind writer and illustrator who sought to use the combination of words and pictures to tell a tale. Oddly enough, this book, like many graphic novels are actually made harder to read for the visually impaired and learning disabled, by using all capital letters, using thick blocky fonts and cramming the text into conversation bubbles.

    This is not a fault of this work alone, but it is common within the genre. These things are not only a problem for the visually impaired, but also for those with learning disabilities. Thus, they do not work as well as one would like for encouraging the reluctant reader.

    This critique noted, the book is a must have for public and school libraries. It is part of a Dark Graphic Novel series that includes a book of stories from Edgar Alan Poe and a graphic novelization of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein.

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  • Posted November 24, 2012


    Good spooky read

    In CHILLING TALES OF HORROR: DARK GRAPHIC SHORT STORIES, Pedro Rodriguez graphically adapts seven classic horror stories from the nineteenth century, including THE HAND by Guy de Maupassant, SIR DOMINICK'S BARGAIN by Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu, THE HOUSE OF NIGHTMARE by Edward Lucas White, THE VAMPIRE by John William Polidori, HOUSE B ON CAMDEN HILL by Catherine Crowe, THE BODY SNATCHER by Robert Louis Stevenson, and THE BLACK cat by Edgar Allan Poe. Rodriguez provides a good mix of well-known with lesser known authors who have fallen off the literary radar. Each chapter begins with a brief biographical sketch of the author. A further reading section directs readers to the original source material.

    I recommend this book for readers who prefer horror writers to leave a little to the imagination rather than provide a CSI worthy accounting of every drop of blood splattered. Drawn with an autumn and winter palette, the illustrations compliment the spookiness of the stories. While the adaptations of the stories are well done, some of the panels contain too many words. At times, the font is too small and the words are squished together, making the text difficult to read. Despite that one objection, this collection of ghosts, grave-robbers and vampires makes for good reading on a dreary November afternoon. Recommended for ages 8 and up. Enslow provided me with a complimentary copy of the book to review. ISBN# 978-0-7660-4085-4.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 10, 2012

    great introduction to inventors of horror fiction

    I got a sample of this at a trade show and really enjoyed the various short stories. Each had a brief intro about the author and the pages had an aged look to them that helped foster a spooky atmosphere. Perfect for kids 12 and up, including adults. Some of the horror in the stories is more in the anticipation of something that anything really gruesome.
    Really perfect for reading by a fire in the fall and winter!

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