In the isolated wilderness town of Barrow, Alaska, there are thirty days in the winter when the sun never rises. Now, a charismatic vampire has heard of the place and the residents of Barrow are about to find themselves overrun by a horde of bloodsuckers. This is a pretty great premise, honestly, but this is really kind of a premise in search of a plot. The elevator pitch is basically “a group of vampires invade an Alaskan town experiencing its month long darkness.” That’s, unfortunately, also a summary of the entire graphic novel. There are a couple of things of interest here. The main character, the sheriff of the small town, is an Inuit and I’m struggling to think of ANYTHING else that has an indigenous main character that isn’t explicitly about the indigenous experience. Of course, in the film version, he was played by Josh Hartnett, so good job on that one, Hollywood. But the real thing here is the art. It’s very expressive and bold and artistic. The color scheme is primarily black, white, grey and . . . well, dark blue. So the way the book uses gore is particularly effective; the explosions of red and the way the color sprays across the panels is really striking and beautiful. There’s a really gorgeous full-page panel at the climax of the story that is really breathtaking. Still, even pausing to savor the art, there’s not much here. If you read it, it should be for the art, not the minimal story and the bland characters. But that’s not too much of an inconvenience. I read the entire book in a single evening, taking my time over the illustrations even. Just find it at a library, as I did, or borrow it from a friend as it’s certainly not worth the nearly thirty-dollar retail price. 3 stars.
tl;dr – minimal horror story has a great premise but doesn’t do much with it; fantastic art though. 3 stars.