cover image The Night Eaters: She Eats the Night

The Night Eaters: She Eats the Night

Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda. Abrams ComicArts, $24.99 (208p) ISBN 978-1-4197-5870-6

Liu and Takeda (the Monstress series) score again with this lush horror series about monsters and family bonding. Ipo is a curt, chain-smoking immigrant from Hong Kong living in Queens, N.Y., with a patient husband, twin exasperated adult children who together run a Hawaiian-themed restaurant (called Spam I Am), and an irrepressible green thumb. She’s a tough woman to get close to, so her kids, Milly and Billy, don’t expect explanations when she suddenly takes them into the abandoned, creepy, vine-choked house across the street (the last owner of which was “strange for even a white person”). There, she exposes them to family secrets she’s long kept hidden and teaches the lesson that “it’s dangerous not to care for the small things that need you.” The action cuts between the modern-day haunted house story and flashbacks to Ipo’s past as a Hong Kong stuntwoman—which, as it turns out, is the most mundane part of her background—and her future husband’s efforts to thaw her icy reserve. Takeda’s delicate inks and glowing watercolors are equally adept at capturing the minutiae of domestic life and a terrifying supernatural underworld of monstrous skeletons, living shadows, hooded figures, and possessed dolls. Her art seems lit from within, turning from sunny and reassuring in one scene to submerged and sinister the next. Fans of stylish contemporary horror comics series like Harrow County and Something Is Killing the Children will eat it all up, then hungrily await the next volume. Agent: Duvall Osteen, Aragi Inc. (Oct.)