Howard Lovecraft and the Frozen Kingdom
Writer: Bruce Brown
Penciler: Renzo Podesta
Colorist: Renzo Podesta
Editor: Dwight L. MacPherson
Release date: February 10, 2010
Are you looking for an adventure into a fantastical world with unique creatures you have never seen before? Well if you are you, then should definitely read Howard Lovecraft and the Frozen Kingdom. If you are at all interested in HP Lovecraft stories, than this is definitely the trade for you. It is a dark story with a lighthearted nature about its characters and dialogue and is a very interesting new take on the HP Lovecraft theme.
The adventure starts off as Howard’s mother is unsure as to whether or not Howard should meet his father in the Arkham Sanitarium. Her decision is cut short when Howard is too curious and finds he has to look into the cell and tell his father how much he misses him. Then his father, very clearly disturbed by what he has experienced, warns Howard never to read his journal or go to the world where he visited.
As any child would, Howard does not heed his father’s warning to stay far away from his book and the adventure begins in a mysterious frozen world with beautiful landscapes. The story is definitely captivating and Bruce Brown does a great job of grabbing your attention from page one.
Renzo Podesta‘s art is very striking and sets a wonderful tone throughout the entire story. It is a very different style than what main stream comic readers will be used to. This helps to set the story apart though, as each character is a stylized version of themselves. Howard, for example, is distinguished from everyone else by his gaze of awe and wonder. Another great example and stark contrast would be Howard’s father, who has a very distinct look to him because of his different experience and personality.
My only fear is that this book wavers on a line between all ages and adults only. The story while interesting is written almost for a younger reader, while the art and subject matter would not necessarily be appropriate for a younger audience. Maybe this was just my interpretation of the book itself and the dialogue, but to me I was just slightly confused by it. I was also a tiny bit confused by the anatomy of Howard’s dog “Spot” in a few panels as well as some of the other creatures in one or two panels. Otherwise, this combination of story and art was a fun romp through the kingdom of R’yleh.
I would definitely recommend this book to my friends to check it out, but if you are thinking of grabbing this for your young children based on Bruce Brown’s all ages book Mwumba, I would suggest reading it first. If you are not sold on the story, I would say pick it up for the art alone and you will be satisfied. I will definitely be checking out Hard Drive based on Podesta’s art alone and I will also be following him on future projects. Overall, I had a great time reading this and hope there is more to come in the series because I was definitely left wanting more.
Rating: 4 out of 5