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B.P.R.D., Vol. 1: Hollow Earth & Other Stories (Hellboy) Paperback – January 14, 2003

23 customer reviews
Book 1 of 14 in the B.P.R.D. Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This latest installment in the Hellboy series collects stories about the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense, a secret organization that investigates and combats paranormal threats. Hellboy, the hulking demon with the bionic arm, is usually the Bureau's star investigator. But in this book, he has left the Bureau after it tried to kill his friend and fellow agent Roger the Homunculus. Hellboy's absence gives formerly supporting characters a well-deserved chance at the spotlight, especially Abe Sapien, "the popular fishman," who appears in three of the four stories. The first tale, "Hollow Earth," is action-packed but still driven by characters. In it, Abe recruits Roger and Johann, a soul without a body, to rescue former teammate Liz Sherman from a spooky Nazi junkyard at the center of the earth, as Hellboy has show-stealing flashbacks to his first meetings with Abe and Liz that present their former mentor in his most endearing light yet. Another highlight is "The Killer in My Skull," which introduces the kitschy Lobster Johnson, a 1940s-style superhero who uses "the harsher justice of the lobster's claw" to fight crime. Ryan Sook's art on the title story has the dynamism and narrative sense of early Jack Kirby, with a distinctly modern edge. And Derek Thompson's art shines in the last piece, "Drums of the Dead," in which Abe and a psychic must put to rest the ghosts of slaves who died during the Middle Passage. Mignola's witty, appealing characters dash off one-liners as they battle paranormal phenomena while retaining their remarkably human qualities.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Dark Horse Books; Revised edition (January 14, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1593072805
  • ISBN-13: 978-1593072803
  • Product Dimensions: 6.6 x 0.3 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #448,813 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

CHRISTOPHER GOLDEN is the New York Times bestselling author of such novels as Snowblind, Tin Men, The Myth Hunters, Wildwood Road, The Boys Are Back in Town, The Ferryman, Strangewood, and Of Saints and Shadows. He has also written books for teens and young adults, including Poison Ink, Soulless, and the thriller series Body of Evidence, honored by the New York Public Library and chosen as one of YALSA's Best Books for Young Readers.

Golden co-wrote the illustrated novel Baltimore, or, The Steadfast Tin Soldier and the Vampire with Mike Mignola, which became the launching pad for the cult favorite comics series Baltimore. As an editor, he has worked on the short story anthologies Seize the Night, The New Dead, and The Monster's Corner, among others, and has also written and co-written comic books, video games, screenplays, a BBC radio play, the online animated series Ghosts of Albion (with Amber Benson), and a network television pilot.

Golden was born and raised in Massachusetts, where he still lives with his family. His original novels have been published in more than fourteen languages in countries around the world. Please visit him at

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Joshua Koppel on April 9, 2004
Format: Paperback
Hellboy has left the BPRD (Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense) but that doesn't mean they are gone. Now the BPRD have their own stories. This volume collects Hollow Earth and several shorter adventures.
Hollow Earth - Abe Sapien travels to the Himalayas and below to find and rescue Liz. The journey takes them do a world of darkness that threatens the surface. I really enjoyed the Journey to the Center of the Earth ending. Also touching were there Hellboy flashbacks and how he endeared himself to various characters (I loved the lollipop).
Hollow Earth Teaser - A three-page teaser that sets up one of the new characters at the Bureau.
The Killer in my Skull - This story stars Lobster Johnson, a hero who uses the lobster claw of justice. In this story he is confronted with some locked-door murders that lead to an unexpected killer.
Abe Sapien vs. Science - Having been the subject of scientific investigation in the past, Abe Sapien is against the use of "scalpels and microscopes" for advancing knowledge of living things. This time the subject is Roger.
Drums of the Dead - Another Abe Sapien adventure as shipping routes are being terrorized by sharks and drums.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Doc Tarantula on October 25, 2004
Format: Paperback

This is the fist collection of stories about the adventures of the Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense (BPRD) without Hellboy, who obviously dominated previous comics. BPRD is the government agency that adopted Hellboy and used him as an agent, and three of the main characters of Hollow Earth (Abe Sapien, Liz Sherman, and Roger the Golem) had their first appearances in previous stories (Seed of Destruction and Wake the Devil). The fourth, Johann Kraus, is introduced in a three page advertisement for "Hollow Earth," one of four stories reprinted here. All four stories deal with something resembling the supernatural: subterranean races, telekinesis, and primitive gods drive this anthology. The creator of Hellboy wrote two of these stories and helped plot "Hollow Earth." Three of the four stories look almost too much like Mignola's artwork, even though his artistic contribution includes only character sketches and inking one of the shorter comics. Beyond the four full stories and the advertisement, some nice sketches by Mike Mignola and "Hollow Earth" artist Ryan Sook.

"Hollow Earth"

The centerpiece of this collection is the sixty-six page title story written by Mike Mignola, Christopher Golden, and Tom Sniegoski and drawn by Ryan Sook and Curtis Arnold, both in mysterious combinations. "Hollow Earth" depicts an adventure story, the trek of three BPRD members, Abe, Roger, and Johann, to find the fourth, who, while meditating at a temple, is kidnapped by a race of subterranean engineers. Liz, who has some elemental connection with fire, has her soul stolen and used to power Giant War Robots, and the others must restore her essence to her before she dies.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful By rampageous_cuss VINE VOICE on February 22, 2005
Format: Paperback
The other reviewers have done a pretty comprehensive job describing the stories in this trade paperback, but what really bugs me about it is that with the exception of ONE story that is INKED by Mignola, NONE OF THE ARTWORK IS BY MIGNOLA!!!

Some of the artwork is highly Mignola-esque, and some of the panel breakdowns are surely his. But when I buy a graphic novel that is listed under an artist's name, I want that artist's work. I get a kick out of Mignola's tongue-in-cheek take on the Cthulhu mythos, but what I'm really looking for is his terrific artwork!

This is the second time I've been burned buying a "Mignola" book (I'm likewise underwhelmed by C.Golden's Hellboy novelizations, with a handful of Mignola illos.) I'd REALLY like to see a better description in the Product Description. At this point, I don't feel I can buy "Mignola" books on-line!
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15 of 21 people found the following review helpful By TorridlyBoredShopper TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on March 10, 2003
Format: Paperback
Is there something rending the fabric of time and space asunder above your newly furnished kitchen, or perhaps a society of bedeviled mermen taking residence in the lake outside your abode? Do you or someone you love find yourself bewitched by a troublesome necromancer seeking to call out the Seven-forms of Ogdru-Jahad? Well, if the shoe fits and you find yourself longing for the one tried-and-true method to cure that which ails you, perhaps you should enlist the aid of the B. P. R. D. The B. P. R. D. specializes in most forms of manifestation and malevolence, providing cure-alls that sometimes work in the most subtle of fashions and that sometimes provide the most groundbreaking of results, keeping Britain and much of the world free from the oppressive grasp of those who would seek to bind her.
Before I continue with explanations, the guides to our operations (comics) collected in this Trade Paperback include: "BPRD: Hollow Earth" from BPRD: Hollow Earth #1-#3, "BPRD"- the strip from Dark Horse Extra #42-#44, "Abe Sapien: Drums of the Dead" from Abe Sapien: Drums of the Dead, "Lobster Johnson: Killer Inside My Skull" from Hellboy: Box Full of Evil #1, "Abe Sapien vs. Science" from Hellboy: Box Full of Evil #2, and depictive illustrations in a Mike Mignola and Ryan Sook sketchbook.

So, you might be ask, what does B.P.R.D. stand for and who exactly are they? Well, the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense is composed of many individuals from the lowest operatives to field agents and beyond that strive to keep the world safe from those unclassified menaces, great and small.
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