Jayna's Reviews > Criminal Macabre

Criminal Macabre by Steve Niles
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's review
Feb 14, 11

Read in February, 2011

I really liked the story here: hardboiled detective, monsters, legends, plague... The concept and overall plot were great. However, it started off a bit slow, with mostly text, and not that much need for images - although I enjoy reading, I was starting to wonder why this wasn't a prose novel. It did pick up, the last two thirds or so were really good, up until the very end - the climax seemed to resolve a bit suddenly, but part of this feeling may have been from the art.
How I felt about the art changed from panel to panel. The spooky horror atmosphere was fantastic throughout, but sometimes the style of drawing characters just threw me - in some panels they were so distorted I wasn't entirely sure who the character was (usually I could pick it up from dialogue or context, but couldn't visually recognize them), or what was happening. This was especially apparent in a few panels during the climax, where I'm still not entirely sure what happened. On the other hand, there were also panels where characters looked fantastic - I especially liked the stylized and very scary shadowy version of werewolves.
Overall, I like the concept, the story, the feel, but was thrown in a couple of places by pacing and distorted art style. I still enjoyed the story, and would try another Cal McDonald book.
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