Posted on March 18, 2016
10. ‘Through the Woods’ by Emily Carroll
In the past few weeks I’ve joined Bristol Central Library and I can’t get enough of the place. The other day I went in there to return a book, and came out with five new ones, including this one from the graphic novels section: Through the Woods by Emily Carroll.
I’ve seen this book around on BookTube, but the reviews weren’t so raving that I wanted to buy it. But when I saw it in the library and the ‘oh my god it’s free’ klaxon went off in my brain, I grabbed it straight away.
I enjoyed this collection. It took me an hour to read at most, but it has a delightfully creepy art style and Carroll is particularly good at contrasting light and dark, and playing with shadows.
The stories are classic fairytale fodder, based in and around woods and following the chilling goings on that happen there. Some are old-fashioned ‘cabin in the forest’ type ghost stories, others are inspired by well-known fairytales, and others adopt more recent settings (eg: the 1920s) and focus more explicitly on monsters.
The language is very sparse and simple, and sometimes I felt that the endings to the stories were done more for visual effect rather than being fully supported by the narrative. Really this feels like a book that you read for the pictures and less for the plots – most of the time I found the images to be more atmospheric than the stories themselves. Still, if you want a quick read to curl up with on a cold, dark evening, you can do a lot worse than this.
“You must travel through those woods again and again … and you must be lucky to avoid the wolf every time. But the wolf … the wolf only needs enough luck to find you once.”
Have you read this book? I’d love to know your thoughts!
Want to read this? You can buy the book here.