There are so many Eisner nominated series out there, even we here at Thwip miss out on a series or two.
Ted Naifeh’s Courtney Crumrin was one such series that I had been putting off for a while.
What a mistake that was.
As soon as I started reading the first story of this seven volume series, I could not put it down. Thankfully I did not have much to do during the day so I just inhaled the series in one gulp.
As usual the first thing that pops up is comparing it to Harry Potter, which is kind of sad because I start thinking about the great reading revolution that was promised by Harry Potter never seemed to come about…and is probably one of the reasons why this series has been overlooked.
The other is of course that it is a comic, the smallest reading audience of all.
Anyways, this first volume is about a young grumpy girl called Courtney Crumrin who has moved into her great grand-uncle’s house (with her parents, but her parents are idiots and inconsequential) and finds out that great grand-uncle has been holding out on some secrets…namely that he is a warlock and that the town of Hillsborough that they have moved into is full of weird fantasy happenings.
Seeing Courtney as she explores the forest and learn magic and get into some serious trouble is a joy to go through (though she herself is quite joyless and perhaps a little evil). The situations that she gets into and deals with are interesting and well-crafted, delving deep into accepted fairy (or faerie if you want to spell it that way) lore.
What more can I say? This genuinely is a great series, just start it, if you aren’t hooked by the first story then you are dead inside and should curl up under a table and wait for the end of your days.
There is one flaw though, Ted Naifeh can’t draw hands…