A luxurious edition of some of Edgar Allan Poe’s best works, lavishly illustrated with macabre style by Benjamin Lacombe. From The Black Cat and the Tell Tale Heart to The Fall of the House of Usher, along with Charles Baudelaire’s essay on Poe’s life and works.
The cover of this collection caught my eye on Netgalley and I actually wanted to check it out before I even knew that Poe was involved. Once I knew that though, I was sold. This was a fantastic collection of macabre stories from the illustrious Edgar Allan Poe. Stories included are: Berenice, The Black Cat, The Island of the Fay, The Tell-Tale Heart, The Fall of the House of Usher, The Oval Portrait, Morella, and Ligeia. This was a real treat for me as I hadn’t read any of these except for The Fall of the House of Usher. There was also an essay written by Charles Baudelaire on Poe’s life and works. In addition to these short stories there are fantastic illustrations from Benjamin Lacombe that (if possible) managed to make the stories even creepier. This is one collection that I would love to own. I loved the illustrations and love Poe, it’s a fantastic combination.
The fact that Benjamin is a fan of Tim Burton is definitely evident in his personal works. You can even find a depiction of Edward Scissorhands he’s done which I love. I highly recommend checking out his website, it’s is well worth the visit to check out his other works. Amazing, to say the least.
"Let me make it in time. Let me meet Shadow. The guy who paints in the dark. Paints birds trapped on brick walls and people lost in ghost forests. Paints guys with grass growing from their hearts and girls with buzzing lawn mowers."
It’s the end of Year 12. Lucy’s looking for Shadow, the graffiti artist everyone talks about.
His work is all over the city, but he is nowhere.
Ed, the last guy she wants to see at the moment, says he knows where to find him. He takes Lucy on an all-night search to places where Shadow’s thoughts about heartbreak and escape echo around the city walls.
But the one thing Lucy can’t see is the one thing that’s right before her eyes.
Lucy has just graduated high school and all she wants to do is find Shadow. Shadow, the graffiti artist who’s been putting his art up all over town. His art makes Lucy think that he’s someone she wants to meet, someone she wants to know, and someone she really wants to connect with. Everyone talks about him but nobody has ever seen him, but Lucy is feeling confident and sets out in search for him one night.
Lucy and Ed
Reading about Lucy and Ed and hearing Lucy gush about Shadow having no idea she was actually talking to me was beyond charming. Those two together were plain adorable and I loved their interactions.
”You know, Leo’s brother’s hooking me up with a car when I get my license. I’m making you get in while it’s moving.” “You’ll drive me places?” “If your aerobic fitness is up to it, sure I’ll drive you places.”
Ed is constantly trying to act like he doesn’t like Lucy when in fact he can’t get her off his mind. Lucy can’t seem to make up her mind how she feels about Ed, especially after their disastrous first date from years back. All she can do is continue to talk about Shadow… I couldn’t wait till she finally found out he’d been in front of her the entire time.
‘I stand behind her, watching her watching my work. I feel like I’m shedding skin, feel like if she turns she’ll see a skeleton man behind her and then she’ll know. But she doesn’t.’
Ed was an amazing character. Here’s this kid who dropped out of high school because he has difficulty reading and he started working at a paint store. The girl he broke up with a few months prior was somebody he had really cared for; however, he knew that they didn’t have a future together because of who he is: a nobody. After he loses his job when his boss dies his paintings are all he has left. I couldn’t help feeling incredibly sad for him, wishing that he had more faith in his abilities.
‘But then I think about her finding out I’m Shadow. I think about her being disappointed because I’m a guy going nowhere, not a guy who’s sensitive and smart and funny. I think about her going to college and making glass and me staying where I am spraying walls and scraping rent.’
Even though the story was semi-centered around Lucy and Ed, I still managed to grow some fuzzy feelings for the side characters as well. Jazz was great and I loved the relationship between Lucy and Jazz; two people so alike yet still so different.
“You should feel it like a horse tumbling through you,” I said to Jazz. “You’re weird,” she said, falling asleep. “But that’s okay. It makes me seem normal.”
I loved this author’s style of writing with her overlapping switch-ups in POV… I’ll be looking for more of her books, most definitely. Not only did it hook me in, but it made me feel. But it’s not all sad… I laughed, I smiled, I sighed. So essentially I hope this review makes at this one reader pick this book up, because it’s truly a great book that is definitely deserving of your time.