Written by novelist Caitlin Kittredge (of the Black London series) Coffin Hill is the creepy gorgeous and sometimes downright disturbing story of Eve Coffin. The youngest in the Coffin family line, Eve takes great pleasure in being a problem. Drugs, drinking, sex, and witchcraft. Her high-society parents rail against her behavior but sending her to boarding schools simply result in those schools sending her right back home. Then one evening the worst finally happens. While playing with magic with friends in the Coffin Hill woods they release something. Something very old and very evil. And it changes their lives forever.
Coffin hill is a scary book. Inaki Miranda’s art is gorgeous and creepy (and the pin-ups and extras add to the mood) and well paced with more than a few panels executed to make you jump a little (one panel in particular got me). As for the writing Caitlin isn’t writing for young adults this time.
The story revolves around Eve, her connection to Coffin Hill, and the horrible things that happened, and may still be happening, there. In the beginning story jumps around a bit, taking us from Eve as a hero rookie policewoman, her being wounded and involved in a scandal and then her return to her ancestral home. I did felt that part of the story was rushed, I know back-story in comics may seem wasteful at times but as I went deeper into Eve’s story I found myself asking how (and why) a troubled teen, involved in the disappearance of a friend, finds her way to a job on a police force? Was this a device to convince us she can handle herself?
I also found the lack of background a problem in how I related to Eve herself. The picture we get of her as a teen is beyond rebellious, bordering on self-destructive myopia. This is a girl who’s using everyone around her but we’re viewing her at the same time a grown-up who’s there trying to help. We never see why or when that change occurs. It’s odd because I totally believed every other character and the path their life took. We see several of Eve’s friends, the grieving boyfriend, the best friends kid sister, the parents of Eve, and of the missing girls and all of them ring true. My only hang up is that hole in Eve’s development.
I think this would have rocked as a novel where it would’ve had the room to explore her past, or a movie where I wouldn’t have missed it (or a montage could have filled the gap), and it was a good comic, very good in fact. I think a little more attention to providing the reader insight into Eve’s journey might have made it a great comic.
I can totally recommend this to any horror fan but especially those of you into the ghost story and witchcraft genres. There are spells, witches, blood, weirdness, crows, disembowelment, man this book has everything.
Pick up Coffin Hill vol 1 horror fans it’s a 4 out of 5!
Coffin Hill Vol. 1: Forest of the Night
Written by Caitlin Kittredge
Illustrated by Inaki Miranda
On Sale Date: May 20, 2014
$9.99 USD / $11.99 CAD
Paperback / softback / Trade paperback (US)
Comics & Graphic Novels / Horror