The Beauty of Horror: A GOREgeous Coloring Book ComicWow! Review

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Alan Robert is a modern day Renaissance Man.  He is a musician and songwriter as well as a comic writer and artist.  His comic work includes Crawl to Me, Wire Hangers, and Killogy.  He has won numerous awards for horror work including a Ghastly and several awards from Comicmonsters.com.

This is not a standard comic book.  It is a coloring book for adults.  It is square (9.8 inches on a side,) and it has no dialogue.  It’s also 80 pages long, and at $17.99, a very expensive item.  It is an impressive accomplishment that succeeds of multiple levels.

The story is somewhat simple.  A girl named Ghouliana has placed several items in the scenes depicted in the book. She did this to avoid getting lost in the woods.  Should the reader choose, locating the objects adds a small ‘Where’s Waldo?” game to the artwork.

Robert’s earlier work, Killogy used a somewhat limited color palette to great effect.  Here he showcases his mastery of line and space by completely dispensing with color.  Every page is and exquisite (and highly literate) exploration of horror.  Roberts explores classic horror tropes ranging from Stoker, Poe and Lovecraft to Tobe Hooper and George Romero and Steven King.  Each page is a complete and highly detailed horror tableau.  Robert’s celebration of Gothic and horror literature/media is all the more sophisticated for his wordless approach.

In addition to the coloring and the treasure hunt, this book is also a silent test of your horror knowledge. Can the reader spot the references to HG Wells, Oscar Wilde, and more?  The work is visually dense to the point of being a Rorschach test for horror fans.  It is an amazing work of art.  It is a sophisticated examination of horror in literature and the media.

It is also a must have for fans of horror artwork.

Illustrated by: Alan Robert

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Review Submitted by Art Boorman

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Art Boorman has been a fan of comics, Science Fiction and Horror since the late EC era. He is a member of the Greater Colombia Fantasy Costumers Guild and a Life Member of both the Baltimore Science Fiction Society and the HP Lovecraft Historical Society. He is a retired Army NCO and currently employed as a Special Educator >> at a Maryland High School where he runs the Science Fiction and Fantasy Club.