Monday, 27 October 2014

Porcelain: A Gothic Fairy Tale Review

Review By
Patrick Scattergood

Written By
Benjamin Read

Art By
Chris Wildgoose
Andre May
Alexa Rosa

Lettering By
Jim Campbell

Cover By
Chris Wildgoose
Andre May

Published By
Improper Books

Fantasy, Supernatural, Drama


Set within a world that's a magical echo of our own, Porcelain is the story of Child, an urchin, who leaves behind the cold streets of a snowy city when she climbs the high wall into the porcelain maker's garden.


When my wife picked this one up from the recent Nottingham Comic Convention, I must admit that while I was intrigued by the storyline itself, I didn't feel the pull to read it straight away.  After hearing my other half tell me a few times just how good this title was, I figured I would give it a read.

The idea was to take a glance at it and then maybe read it later.  That said, as soon as I started reading it, I just couldn't put it down.  In fact, I didn't want to.  The story hooked me in from the very first page and didn't let go.

Story wise, the pacing and the story itself really does an utterly brilliant job of creating the world and the characters that are going to play such a big part in the proceeding story.  The characters themselves are hard to explain.  You don't really know anything about them other than the bare minimum yet you find yourself completely hooked in to their lives.  The relationship that then grows up between the Porcelain Maker and Child really tugs at the heart, especially as the story goes on.  At first, you are lead to believe that the story is going to take a sinister turn.  Is he going to experiment on her?  Murder her?  That's when you get a big twist and it completely takes you for a huge surprise.  I loved that about the story itself, the way the writing lures you in to the world only to take a 360.

While the story is completely involving, it's the gorgeous art that, for me, really makes this book one that really has to be picked up by anyone with even a passing interest in stories that are set in our world but with a supernatural / paranormal twist.  The art team here really do know when to grab the details that will bring the eyes of the reader to the action.  The almost soft style of art really does create an impact, especially when you hit the shocking ending that brings the story almost full circle in a beautiful yet tragic way.

All in all, I was more surprised by this title than any other indie title that I have read for a very long time.  Not only could I not put it down while I was reading it, I wanted to flip straight back to the beginning and start it again as soon as I had finished.  I can't rate this enough.  There are so many layers to the story and the characters that it will stay with you long after you have finished the story and you can't ask for more than that.

Story 8.5/10
Art 9/10
Cover 9/10
Recommended 9/10
Overall 35.5/40

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