In A Christmas for Crows, Leonide the Vampyr Makes A Chilling Return

22 Dec

A Christmas for CrowsDark Horse Comics
Spoiler Alert

Comic book extraordinaire Mike Mignola has crafted a character which I believe will surpass even Wednesday Addams’ fame. There’s more than meets the eye to who Leonide the Vampyr is, and in book two, A Christmas for Crows, her backstory suggests her curse was preordained. I will not spoil too much of this beautiful story. All I can figure out so far, before she got turned, must have been very complex.

And throughout the years, she’s been selective in who was bled dry in order for her to go on. Those victim’s curse seems to differ from hers. One family might have metamorphosized into crows, hence this volume’s title and like the Wandering Jew, both are fated to chase the night. In this latest work, this murder visit Leonide, and as for what they do, well, that’d be revealing too much.

The spirit of the holiday is truly embraced in this quick read. When those birds offer something else to this girl, I breathed a sigh of relief. When another spectre who we all know as Sandroni visits the young Vampyr and she expects a fight, I was turning the page carefully since this meeting is their second time going toe-to-toe.

Instead, they bond and that’s where the mystery thickens! I’m left wondering if she and the skeleton priest have a past that we don’t know all the details about. The work takes on a tone that I recall from The Little Vampre by Angela Sommer-Bodenburg and I’m left yearning for more. Both figures aren’t intentionally evil, and I want to know who created her? Additionally, why does she travel alone, inside a coffin, only to have the mode of transport fun afoul of the land and eject the cargo?

Also, we have a mix of the gothic with a light touch of pink and red to remember this young girl’s past. Rachele Aragno‘s artwork is superb. Instead of simply copying Mignola’s trademark style verbatim, her layouts and background illustrations in A Christmas for Crows hints at who this young girl was long ago. I kept on looking back to see what kind of innocence was lost since the place she takes up residence in with this story seems to have connections to her past.

The next tale might come around Easter or Summer Solstice, and as for whether this character has the legs to expand beyond a trilogy of one-shots, I think there’s a lot that can be done. The stretch of land that defines Medieval Europe is vast, and as for who else Leonide can meet is not limited to seeing Sandroni return time and time again. He’s been chasing after this girl since Miracle at The Crow’s Head (review here).

As for the future, wherever vampires roam, I’m sure this young tween won’t be far behind. I definitely have to read both volumes back to back to find more telling details, and until the third tale is released, I don’t plan on trying to tie it all together. There’s a lot more back story to tell, and as for whether a certain character will return, it’s safe to say the undead exist forever until the Messaih returns.

5 Stars out of 5

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