Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Locke & Key Volume 1: Welcome to Lovecraft
Artist: Gabriel Rodriguez
Company: IDW Publishing
Summer's here and with it comes ample opportunity to seek out new books to wile away the hours of a day. I mean really, who wants to be out on the beach, soaking up the sun or spending time with family when they could be locked away in a darkened room somewhere reading fantastical and thrilling stories? The choice is simple, people. Regardless of what you do choose, if you do happen to seek out a new title to peruse, my first suggestion would be Locke & Key, a supernatural suspense yarn by talented author Joe Hill. Best known for his novels Heart-Shaped Box, Horns and the short story compilation 20th Century Ghosts, Locke & Key represents his first ongoing comic book series and let me tell you, it's a doozy.
The story revolves around two things: A Gothic estate that holds countless mysteries named Keyhouse, and the family that takes up residence there, the Lockes. It's a fairly straightforward story that gets under your skin. It all begins with the cold blooded murder of Rendell Locke, a family man and a guidance counselor for a local high school. It's a visceral scene, one portrayed realistically and contains ample amounts of emotion that the reader can get caught up in. This is the event that predicates the rest of the family, the mother, Nina, and the three Locke children Tyler, Kinsey and Bode, to move to a small New England town and live in the house that their father grew up in.
As for the supernatural portion of the story that I mentioned earlier, that would come from Keyhouse itself. It seems that scattered throughout the house are several keys. These keys open objects and doors that have a mystical or magical property. Appropriately, the youngest Locke, Bode, finds the first key which opens the Ghost Door and allows him to become a specter. He also meets an entity that has been trapped in the house that may or may not be a villainous creature out for revenge. All in all, the story is a layered thing and seeing all of these characters not only deal with life after the loss of a family member, but also with the discovery of magic and the possibilities that such a thing can offer is a page turner.
here) probably helped as well, as the house really is just another character in the story.
All in all, this is one of those books that fit a lot of different criteria. You want something spooky? Has character depth? Humorous? Has a great story? If the answer to any of those are yes, then seek out Locke & Key. Your summer will be better for it.