Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Beautiful Darkness” as Want to Read:
Beautiful Darkness
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Beautiful Darkness

3.81 of 5 stars 3.81  ·  rating details  ·  2,159 ratings  ·  472 reviews
"A fairytale where the darkness is only natural: the real world of Beautiful Darkness not only includes but embraces decay, calm indifference, and animals who act like animals, just like life - and death. And neither its prince or princess are quite what we expect. Read it outdoors for maximum effect."--Kathe Koja, author ofThe Cipher andUnder the Poppy

"A brilliant premis
Hardcover, 94 pages
Published February 25th 2014 by Drawn and Quarterly (first published March 6th 2009)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Beautiful Darkness, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Beautiful Darkness

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:

Beautiful Darkness begins with Prince Hector and Princess Aurora enjoying a spot of tea when all of a sudden the roof starts dripping all over them . . .

Houston commercial photography

If you’re anything like me you begin to wonder what the hell kind of house are they living in that has a roof that leaks splooshy red shit all over??? You then immediately regret asking that question . . .

Houston commercial photography

What the F*!?!?!?!?!

Houston commercial photography

The synopsis sums things up quite brilliantly. Beautiful
May 07, 2015 Melki rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: fans of creepy dolls and Grimm's grimmest
Alice in Wonderland meets Lord of the Flies!

I LOVED this horrifically DARK fairy tale where adorable ragamuffins turn on one another in an effort to stay alive (or occasionally, just for the hell of it!)

Never has murder, cannibalism and vengeance been so fetching! Or so gorgeously rendered!




I honestly can't think of anything I've ever read that's been so utterly charming and so wholly disturbing. In case you missed it before - this is DARK. Very, very DARK! (So don't come crying to me if you have
I don't get the positive reviews. I thought the graphic novel had awesome ideas - but it was very poorly executed. The novel does NOT have a story, it does NOT explain, it does NOT have an ending & it does NOT satisfy.

I waited months for this (the translation) - and was deeply disappointed... This is only enjoyable if you are easily satisfied by art and some horror 'quirks' that lead to nowhere.

I give this three stars, only because I did see potential and felt the love of the author for his
Sometimes I see books on Goodreads, y'all, and put them on hold at my local library, and sort of forget about them until they arrive.

So when Beautiful Darkness showed up this morning, I was very much, “Hmm, I wonder what the hell this is? Oh well, probably something somebody wrote a review of, must be good, oooh, graphic novel, let’s do this thing!”

That’s pretty much a direct quote, actually. My ongoing inner narrative is pretty stream-of-consciousness.

Right off the bat, the illustrations are f
A post-apocalyptic tale rendered in sweetly childlike images, but only at first glance, as upon closer inspection even this sweetness is thoroughly tainted with rot and evil and infectious swelling.

My wife bought this for my daughter but when she looked closer she decided it was for me.

A playful family interior scene is suddenly disrupted by dark red blobs oozing from above, which continue to ooze engulfing the entire space. The family evacuates, and then it’s an entire community, an entire po
Sam Quixote
From The Brothers Grimm to Disney, fairy tales have been sanitised to appeal to all ages - family-friendly entertainment! - except, as most people know, they had very dark origins. Stories like Beauty and the Beast and Rapunzel featured “grown up” themes even though fairy tales, until the 19th century, were consumed mainly by adults.

Beautiful Darkness is writer Fabien Vehlmann and artist Kerascoet’s subversive take on the well-defined genre as little people living inside a young girl escape whe
May 20, 2014 Michele rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: art
I'm trying to figure out how I feel about Beautiful Darkness. It's like Lord of the Flies with illustrations that disarm you with charm and then blindside you with gruesome.

The story features a cast of characters that make up the imaginary world inside a young girl's mind. Within the first couple pages, the characters are evicted, and are forced into the real world. At first, the naivety with which they explore their new world is cute, but soon their childlike exploration turns dark as the char
Farel Dalrymple
this might be the best comic have read so far this year.
Unique, lovely, and one of the most unsettling things I have ever read.
In Fabien Vehlmann and Kerascoët's savagely allegorical Bande dessinée, a whole imagination's worth of metaphorical fairyish manifestations suddenly and shockingly find themselves without the comfort of their vessel, exposed to the elements, nature (red in tooth and claw) and most horrifying of all, themselves.
Beautiful Darkness is the human condition writ tiny, as each of the now homeless cartoon-like pixies represents a facet of our many constituent tics and behaviours, from narcissism to pra
Jeff Jackson
Set in the realm of fairy tales, complete with princes and princesses, this graphic novel is not what it seems at first blush. It's an exquisitely crafted story about a tribe of little people abandoned in the forest, detailing their casual violence and self-destructive maneuvers with a delicate touch. Illustrated like a children's book, it's a brutal and haunting experience, right down to the final caption.
I read this after hearing buzz on some podcasts and review sites, while I didn't love this as much as some, I still found this thought provoking. The Comics Journal likened this to The Borrowers meets Lord of the Flies and that seems an apt description. Without revealing too much, we follow a group of fairy tale characters as they suddenly find themselves fending for their lives in the "real" world. Make no mistake, this is not a kids story, there are several gruesome/disturbing scenes, so while ...more
I don't even know where to start. Wow....just...bloody hell. The illustrations are beautiful and disturbing. The Goodreads description compares the book to The Borrowers - The Borrowers in HELL, maybe.
Justin Traasdahl
Ok whoa. That was messsssed up and dark and weird. So of course I loved it.

My brother told me that Margaret Atwood books are allegorical, and so I thought, I must not like allegory. This dark graphic novel is an allegorical tale as well. It starts out with a civilized tea party, everyone is playing their parts, the Princess blushes, the Prince is chivalrous and the gentlelady's gentlelady promptly brings the hot chocolate. With a smile.

The the world starts caving in around them. The tea party is decidedly over. It's every man, or Princess, for themselves as they esc

-Beautiful artwork
-Interesting take on human morality and innocence. If you like Lord of the Flies, this one's for you.
-Aurora's character was interesting. At first, she comes off as a standard princess, but her story gets really dark. It was interesting to watch her transformation.
-Surprisingly dark. We're talking cannibalism, mutilation, and it's all portrayed with relative indifference. It was kind of disturbing how uncaring and sociopathic the characters in this book were.


-The stor
I don't even know. I feel like if I give this a high rating it means I'm a terrible person, but if I give it a low rating it means I'm a boring and unimaginative person. The one thing that I do know is that I shouldn't have read it while eating breakfast. Mmmmmm... rotting corpses.
Counting as my controversial comic book for the Panels Read Harder Challenge.
Nothin' good ever crawled out of a corpse and this book proves it!
I heard about this creepy little graphic novel from a list of recommendations for fans of "Twin Peaks." This looks so cute, then it turns creepy. As an example, the story begins with a pretty little tiny girl having dinner with a prince. Then the room they're in starts melting, and they claw their way out, and the shot pans back so we can see they've been having a fancy dinner inside the dead body of a little girl.

There's a lot more where that came from. The cuteness of the illustrations makes t
Alec Longstreth
One of the most disturbing books I have ever read. The contrast between the lightness of watercolor drawings and the darkness of the story sets up a real mind-bending reading experience.
I couldn't shake the unsettling feeling this story left me with, long after reading it. The author and artist do an excellent job of using different elements to put the reader off yet keep them deliciously hooked. There is subtle gore, shock, horror, mystery - it's all here and it's put to use, enveloping the reader and holding their
attention from beginning to end. Even more so, is that I guarantee you (the horrified reader) will recognize the characteristics of people that you know among this l
Khalid Albaih
A dark fairytale ... A nightmare with a happy ending
mmmkay, this is something else, people.
It's a sweet little story that snaps your head off at the end.
It's a disarmingly charming world that flips into some very dark places.
It's definitely not for kids.

These cute little beings are horrifying to each other. The forest is a brutal place. You can make your home in the most repugnant locations. Just because something is adorable does not mean it is not capable of the worst.

The execution is beautiful - it really goes well with the mood of the piece.
I went in to this blind, only knowing the title and the cover. My reaction went something like this: "What the !(%*#)@%#(%"

Okay, so this book basically has no plot, resolution, or explanation and is more along the lines of a bunch of vaguely chronological, chaotic, disturbing scenes. If you liked David Sedaris' Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk you'll probably like this. I generally love weird and morbid things, however I came down on the side of not liking this because for me it was less deliciously cre
What fascinates me about graphic novels is that the illustrator and the writer have the capability to bring the story to life through art and language. If used successfully, the story is entertaining and visually appealing. This partnership is clearly present in Fabien Vehlmann and Kerascoet's graphic novel "Beautiful Darkness."

When the story begins, the readers meet Aurora and her love interest Hector. Their conversation about a recent party is cut short when the ceiling starts to drip. Globs o
Writer Vehlmann and the husband and wife artist team Kerascoët magnificently twist the classic children’s story The Borrowers into a dark allegorical tale. Seemingly abandoned in a forest, princess Aurora and friends struggle for survival against creatures, both real and magical, and each other. Vehlmann and Kerascoët successfully incorporate well known elements of fairy tales—fey princesses, a noble prince, talking creatures, giants, little people, and witches—to great effect in their anti-fa ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Accomplishes exactly what it sets out to do. It's (of course) dark, pessimistic, brutal, grotesque... but also at times cute, funny, and (of course) beautiful. This is a strong work that proclaims, with little reservation, that "man is evil" - they will abandon, betray, and murder one another to survive, to get ahead, or often for no reason at all. This is a book that sets out to make a statement; whether or not you're entertained is almost beside the point.
David Schaafsma
I don't know what people are talking about when they call this an "anti-fairytale". Most fairy tales are dark, and this is in many ways no darker than many… Neil Gaiman, among others in contemporary times, reminds us of the thin line between horror and fantasy. Think the Bros. Grimm if you want grim fairy tales, right? This one, that others tell me takes a page from classical children's tale The Borrowers, looks mostly lighthearted and (as others have noted) Moomin-like cute, shifts quickly to d ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Fates of some characters? (Spoilers) 3 36 May 20, 2015 07:44AM  
Mrs. Eriksson's S...: Beautiful Darkness by Fabian Vehlmann 1 5 Aug 19, 2014 12:15PM  
  • Beauty
  • How To Be Happy
  • Heads or Tails
  • Nijigahara Holograph
  • Safari Honeymoon
  • Aama, Vol. 1: The Smell of Warm Dust (Aama, #1)
  • The Hospital Suite
  • Ant Colony
  • SuperMutant Magic Academy
  • Everything We Miss
  • Delphine
  • Dockwood
  • Big Questions
  • Sandcastle
  • Good Dog
  • Jim Henson's The Dark Crystal: Creation Myths, Volume 2
  • Red Sonja, Vol. 1: Queen of Plagues
  • The Motherless Oven
Usually uses the pseudonym Vehlmann

Fabien Vehlmann est comme son héros : pétillant, engagé et plein d'humour.

Après avoir patiemment suivi les cours d'une école de commerce nantaise, Fabien Vehlmann réalise que sa voie est ailleurs. Bien décidé à se lancer dans la bande dessinée, il se consacre à l'écriture de manière intensive durant une année entière. Il empile les projets et inonde scrupuleuseme
More about Fabien Vehlmann...
Isle of 100,000 Graves Last Days of an Immortal La disparition (Seuls, #1) Le maître des couteaux (Seuls, #2) Le clan du requin (Seuls, #3)

Share This Book