cover image Troll Bridge

Troll Bridge

Neil Gaiman and Colleen Doran. Dark Horse, $14.99 (64p) ISBN 978-1-50670-008-3

This book continues Dark Horse’s series of older Gaiman short stories illustrated by prominent comics talents; the original story was published in 1993. This version begins with a black-haired boy, Jack, wandering through an idyllic English countryside. There are treasures: deep purple gleaming stones, a ring of mushrooms, a sky full of butterflies and a twisting forest path. There is also a troll, who runs his hands over Jack and threatens to eat his life. After some bargaining, the troll releases him, but by the end of the tale Jack seems almost to regret his narrow escape. Doran’s full-color art captures the details of the forest in sage greens and soft browns, in contrast to the troll’s vivid red tongue. Her painting style is nearly photorealistic. This style makes for a somewhat unsettling combination with the many border-less panels and full bleed pages, turning them into scenes out of strange dreams, or possibly nightmares. Agent: Merrilee Heifetz, Writers House. (Oct.)