The Crossroads at Midnight
The Crossroads at Midnight

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Annotation: In this collection of evocative, unnerving slice-of-life horror, five stories explore what happens when one is desperate enough to seek solace in the unnatural, and what might be waiting for us at the Crossroads at Midnight.
Catalog Number: #256130
Format: Perma-Bound Edition
All Formats: Search
Special Formats: Graphic Novel Graphic Novel
Publisher: Consortium
Copyright Date: 2020
Edition Date: 2020
Pages: 320
Availability: Available
New Title: Yes
ISBN: Publisher: 1-945820-68-3 Perma-Bound: 0-7804-9143-2
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-1-945820-68-7 Perma-Bound: 978-0-7804-9143-4
Dewey: Fic
Language: English
Reviews:
Kirkus Reviews
Routine life intersects with the unnatural in five horror tales told through black-and-white comics.In the opening story, Frankie talks to someone on the other side of the fence; only an eyeball can be seen through a small hole. Frankie is sick of interfering, judgmental parents and seeks connection with someone who understands. This yearning for companionship and comfort is echoed throughout the collection, each time ultimately leading to interactions with unknown beings. A stressed-out student seeks comfort from a mattress found abandoned on the street, which turns out to host a grotesque, flesh-stealing creature. Walking corpses become an old woman’s new companions. A young girl wants to be reunited with her friend the lake monster, who is not so friendly anymore. While each story features some sort of creature or monster, the way they play into the horror differs. Thrilling action, disturbing body horror, unnerving suspense, and deep melancholy can all be found within these tales. The art, consisting of realistic-looking crosshatching lines on white panels, is stunning, with various shapes and shading used intentionally to amp up the drama. The intensity of the stories warrants quick page turns, but all the little details of the art beg to be thoughtfully pored over. Most characters appear White; main characters in one of the stories are cued as Black.Unsettling in the best way. (concept art) (Graphic horror. 13-adult)
Publishers Weekly
Howard (The Last Halloween: Children) proves herself an expert in the horror genre and the comics format with five suspenseful, excellently executed short stories-diverse in cast, setting, and horrific monsters-based in individual loneliness and lack. In -The Boy from the Sea,- Nia, a young girl, plays alone while her older sister hangs out with other kids on the beach, perking up when an uncanny, ocean-dwelling boy attempts to befriend her. In -The Girl in the Fields,- queer teen Frankie seeks comfort from her parents- judgment via a neighbor who-s visible only as an eye viewed through a fence board-s knot. -Mattress, Used- fleshes out the experiences of a college student for whom an old stained mattress represents a hoped-for night-s rest, and two other stories follow characters longing for unlikely creatures- companionship. Centering female-presenting protagonists of varying ages, ethnicities, and body types, Howard-s black-and-white art style, brilliantly lit and textured with hatching, creates chilling atmospheres. Each story comes to life as Howard draws out thrilling climaxes with agonizingly long sequences that frequently linger on grotesque visuals. Wonderfully terrifying. Ages 13-up. (Oct.)
Starred Review for Kirkus Reviews
Routine life intersects with the unnatural in five horror tales told through black-and-white comics.In the opening story, Frankie talks to someone on the other side of the fence; only an eyeball can be seen through a small hole. Frankie is sick of interfering, judgmental parents and seeks connection with someone who understands. This yearning for companionship and comfort is echoed throughout the collection, each time ultimately leading to interactions with unknown beings. A stressed-out student seeks comfort from a mattress found abandoned on the street, which turns out to host a grotesque, flesh-stealing creature. Walking corpses become an old woman’s new companions. A young girl wants to be reunited with her friend the lake monster, who is not so friendly anymore. While each story features some sort of creature or monster, the way they play into the horror differs. Thrilling action, disturbing body horror, unnerving suspense, and deep melancholy can all be found within these tales. The art, consisting of realistic-looking crosshatching lines on white panels, is stunning, with various shapes and shading used intentionally to amp up the drama. The intensity of the stories warrants quick page turns, but all the little details of the art beg to be thoughtfully pored over. Most characters appear White; main characters in one of the stories are cued as Black.Unsettling in the best way. (concept art) (Graphic horror. 13-adult)
Reviewing Agencies: - Find Other Reviewed Titles
Starred Review for Publishers Weekly (3/1/20)
Starred Review for Kirkus Reviews (3/1/20)
Reading Level: 5.0
Interest Level: 7-12

"Unsettling in the best way." -- KIRKUS, Starred Review "Wonderfully terrifying." -- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY, Starred Review "Gets under your skin." -- GEEK MOM A masterful collection of tales from the faded border between our day-to-day world and the horrifying unknown on the other side of midnight. An old woman living alone on the edge of a bog gets an unexpected -- and unsettling -- visitor, throwing her quiet life into a long-buried mystery. An isolated backwoods family stumbles into good fortune for a time with a monstrous discovery in the lake behind their house, but that time is running short. And a misfit little girl, struggling to make friends, meets an understanding soul one day at the beach: but why will he only play with her alone at night? All these lonely souls -- and more -- have reached out into the darkness, not knowing what they might find. Around the dark edges of reality lurk unknown beings with unknowable intentions -- ordinary objects can become cursed possessions, entities who seem like friends can become monstrous, and those who seem monstrous can become the truest companions. In this collection of evocative, unnerving slice-of-life horror, five stories explore what happens when one is desperate enough to seek solace in the unnatural, and what might be waiting for us at the Crossroads at Midnight.


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