Author: Carmen Maria Machado
Publisher: DC Black Label
Released: September 29th, 2020
Issues: The Low, Low Woods 1-6
Warnings: Sexual assault, abuse
I received a copy of The Low, Low Woods in exchange for a fair and honest review.
The Low, Low Woods is the latest graphic novel in the DC Black Label line. As such, it’s a horror story, and it makes no apologies for what it is.
In Pennsylvania there is a town called Shudder-to-Think. It is a town that has earned it’s name. Fires blaze under the ground, while those above are afflicted with an illness that takes away their memory. In little pieces at first, and later in large chunks.
El and Vee are the latest victims to this disease, and they’re not content to let it run its course. Thus, they’re going to find the cause, though they may not appreciate the truth once it has been uncovered.
Warnings: The Low, Low Woods is a seriously dark book. It has strong themes surrounding sexual assault, rape, and abuse. This is not a story for the faint of heart. Seriously.
The Low, Low Woods has got to be one of the darkest graphic novels I’ve read in quite some time. No, I take that back. I actually think that is is legit the darkest graphic novel I’ve ever read, which I’d like to think is saying something.
This is a book that doesn’t hide from uncomfortable subjects or facts. It explores the darker side of humanity. Set in a small town, it was free to get as dark as it wanted. All while basing the core of it on real events (the mining accidents).
Honestly, this graphic novel started out as a pretty interesting read. I really enjoyed it at first. And then the darkness started setting in. My warning was no exaggeration, and many readers will potentially find it to be highly triggering.
That in itself isn’t a bad thing, it’s a horror story after all, and it never pretended that anything happening was okay. It’s an exploration of trauma and how horrible human beings can be. It discusses all sides of memory, and the reasons why sometimes people prefer to forget. Like I said, not for the faint of heart.
The artwork inside The Low, Low Woods was a perfect compliment. It’s dark and gritty, and danced nicely around some of the themes I already mentioned. Nothing graphic is ever shown, only implied. I’m grateful for that.
Personally, I adored the color palette found within these pages, and feel like that alone really set the tone for the entire read. Though maybe that’s just me.
One thing I have to say, I’m really curious to see what sort of story will follow-up The Low, Low Woods – looks like it’s Daphne Byrne, but I haven’t read that one yet. It’ll be interesting to see how that one goes.