This publisher never fails to knock it out of the park with their themed All Hallow’s Eve releases, and I’m always excited to check out what they got every year. If there was a way to rename the tradition to a Dark Horse Halloween, I’ll be voting it in! Ever since they released The Dark Horse Book of Hauntings (2003), Witchcraft (2004), Dead (2005), Monsters (2006)–four different anthologies–to the market nearly two decades ago, and usually outside the season, I was hooked!
One of this publisher’s earliest specials, titled Drawing on Your Nightmares Halloween Special (2003), featured stories from Steve Niles, Ben Templesmith, Eric Powell, Brett Matthews, and many more. To track this publisher’s history with the coming of the All Hallow’s Eve is a joy, and I’m glad to learn they are going to release a regular anthology starting this year!
This new release features tales introduced by the Dark Equestrian, and I think he’s the cousin to the famous ghost from Sleepy Hollow. And as for what readers will find are a wide range of Halloween related works from the likes of Lukas Ketner, Angela Slatter, Christie Porter, Olivia Stephens and David Dastmalchian. These multi-talented individuals not only penned the work, but also illustrated them too. Additional names include Valeria Burzo, Lukas Ketner, Phillip Sevy and Tyler Crook. They round out the crew who also provide the finishes to the individual tales at hand, and the type of worlds presented range from Fantasy to Brothers Grimm.
Not every protagonist is guaranteed to lose their head, as the title of this series suggests. Instead, it’s about the surprise and who helps whom. Standout stories include “Some Wander,” by Slatter and “The Muse,” by Stephens. The former is a beautiful variation of the Red Riding Hood story, and the latter concerns the illustrative style this creator uses about a young lady getting accepted at a writing academy. With no surprise, there’s a cost, and the tale that’s presented even gives me goosebumps!
This anthology shows promise because it introduces talents who may not be as familiar. I can’t wait to see how it’ll develop in the following years, since already, I’d love to see this comic book publisher release a statue of the host. They take after Elvira, Mistress of the Dark, and that’s good enough for me!
But as for what else they got, there’s the following two titles which are now out on comic book shelves.
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