cover image Snow, Glass, Apples

Snow, Glass, Apples

Neil Gaiman and Colleen Doran. Dark Horse, $17.99 (64p) ISBN 978-1-5067-0979-6

Doran (Amazing Fantastic Incredible) outdoes herself in adapting Gaiman’s inventive short story into a stylish graphic novella. The dark fairy tale recasts “Snow White” from the queen’s point of view; in this version, White is a seductive vampire, the dwarfs are sinister “forest folk,” and cutting out the princess’s heart does nothing to stop her wintry reign of terror. To match the script’s eerie mood and transgressive themes, Doran draws visual inspiration from Harry Clarke, an early-20th-century illustrator and stained-glass artist with a romantic, decadent sensibility. Her panels drip with fin de siècle elegance: beads, flowers, flowing hair, Celtic designs, and dense collages of figures, landscapes, and patterns. The result is a lush, unabashedly sexy fantasy/horror comic with a timeless, mythic feel. To compensate for the story’s scant page count, the edition includes notes and sketches from Doran explaining her creative process. It’s one of the best Gaiman adaptations to come along in some time, and it’s a must-read for lovers of mature fantasy and art nouveau. [em](Aug.) [/em]