The Rattler by Jason McNamara and Greg Hinkle

Comic: The Rattler
Release date: July 2014
Writer: Jason McNamara
Artist: Greg Hinkle
Cover: Greg Hinkle, two colors (black and red)
Interior: 96 pages, grey shading with red highlights
Synopsis: 10 years have passed since Stephen Thorn's fiancee vanished without a trace, and he has grown into a prominent, if bitter, victim's rights crusader. Despite the cold trail and lack of leads, he stubbornly refuses to give up the search. And then...

The Deal

Jason McNamara started a Kickstarter campaign to get this TPB printed. That's where I got my copy from. I'm even listed in the book as an accomplice which, after reading the book, makes me feel a bit squeamish, but I think that was the whole point. I decided to pledge when I saw the stunning artwork by Greg Hinkle. Now finally I have it in my hands.

The Feel

The cover is made of sturdy paper that folds away easily to make room for the inner pages. The story pages feel silky and have just the right color white to fit the artwork perfectly. The binding looks and feels sturdy and has kept everything together even after I read the book a couple of times. 

The Story

It starts with the night Stephen Thorn lost his fiancee. A dramatic beginning to this stunning horror story about a man who never lets the flame die on searching for his lost love. Jason McNamara did a fantastic job with this script that's horrific when it needs to be but not when the story doesn't call for it. Too many horror stories result in image upon image of gory details that doesn't add anything to the story. This one keeps you wanting more till you get down to the horror of it all. The story builds up the angst and mystery throughout the whole story and where I usually take breaks from reading a TPB/HC, this time, I just couldn't put it down and read it in one sitting.

You can see and feel Stephen Thorn's fear in the details of Hinkle's artwork

The Look

The artwork is what first drew me to this comic, the whole interior is black/grey except for the blood-red highlights. I usually prefer full color, but the stunning drawings, brilliant use of the limited colors and the details that went into the characters portrayed makes it absolutely perfect. I like that they've highlighted the blood, it gives it that extra dimension and makes some panes extra horrific. I don't even think it would benefit from full color. 

The Conclusion

This is a no-brainer. Every collector of horror or mystery comics should have this on his/her bookshelf. I give it five stars for story, art and the book itself. It's very rare to find a horror book that is not just gory but strong in plot and well thought out. Can't say much more without giving away any of the plot, but you need to read this... you just don't know it yet.

How to get a copy?

Good question, I got mine trough Kickstarter. I can't see it up on Jason McNamara's website yet, but I'm sure it will be soon, or better yet you can ask him. If you know of anywhere where you can get this fine piece of work just let me know and I'll put a link here.

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