- Series: Beasts of Burden (Book 1)
- Hardcover: 184 pages
- Publisher: Dark Horse Books; First Edition edition (July 6, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1595825134
- ISBN-13: 978-1595825131
- Product Dimensions: 8 x 1 x 11.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #379,129 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Beasts of Burden Volume: Animal Rites Hardcover – July 6, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Burden Hill looks at first glance to be the epitome of the idyllic suburb, but unbeknownst to its human populace the place is rife with all manner of supernatural menaces, both great and small. Werewolves, hauntings, black magic covens, and less easily defined things that go bump in the night wreak havoc just under the radar of man's perception, but do not go unnoticed by the unlikeliest occult protectors of all: a group of household pets comprising several dogs and a stray cat. These four-footed paranormal investigators, occasionally aided by "wise dogs" trained in the arcane arts, take on all comers with devotion and diligence. Dorkin's clever writing and Thompson's charming painted art effortlessly draw in readers--Thompson's realistic take creates a full world to get immersed in. Loaded with fun in every panel, this series has massive crossover appeal for those who enjoy horror, humor, and stories about endearing animal characters. This gorgeous hardcover edition contains the short stories that introduced the characters, along with the 2009 miniseries and supplemental behind-the-scenes material with notes by Dorkin. A stunner.
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Top Customer Reviews
The stories have just the right blend of creepy horror, adventure, a dash of comedy relief, and alot of heart.
Full reviews posted at robinhoodreads.wordpress.com
The world of the book is a sunny, idealic suburb with the dark forces of the supernatural creeping in at the fringes. There to fight back are the eponymous beasts, a group of dogs (and one cat) who find themselves reluctant heroes. Evan Dorkin's writing gives each member of the cast (even characters who only pop up for a few panels) a distinct personality and an arsenel of sharp dialog and Jill Thompson's watercolor art is gorgeous - it looks even better due to this hardcover's slightly oversized dimensions.
The artwork in this is beautiful. I love that the artist uses watercolor rather than another medium. It adds to the eeriness of the darker scenes, and something about it makes the animals seem more human in their emotions. The art is what drew me to the series, and as I was reading it I would stare at the pictures for several minutes before turning the page to continue reading. Some comics have trouble filling in the blanks that novels fill in with words, but the artwork more than makes up for anything that would be lost between word and art.
The storytelling is also amazing. Some of the stories will make you laugh, the others will have you crying because they are so moving. The personification of the dogs and cats helps you to relate to them, and the fact that they're like our own pets makes you fall in love with them within the first few pages.
I wish I could say more about this, but you really need to read it yourself to understand. If you love horror and the paranormal, this is for you. If you love pets and their spazzy quirks, this is for you. If you like drama in personal relationships, this is for you. If you like a good mystery, this is for you. So get it already!
This doesn't take a lot of explaining. Basically there's a group of suburban house pets (mostly dogs), that band together to protect their neighborhood from a host of supernatural occurrences.
You know those terrible Disney films where the animals talk and jazz? It's like that, only crossed with Tales From The Crypt/X-Files. What's so great about this book is the way that both Evan Dorkin's writing and Jill Thompson's watercolor style of illustration create this neat world of simple creatures dealing with supernatural horrors. And the "horrors" aspect of this is important. As much as this book creates this warm environment of talking dogs and cats - the stuff they deal with and see is often sad, brutal and fairly gory. But not so gory or intense that it would make this "inappropriate" for older kids.
So if you're looking for something cool to read - here you go. This is fun, easily accessible and just plain cool. Totally worth a purchase.
I must say it is pretty cool to see a guy who went from drawing punk/ska comics about tiny, angry dairy products running around brutally maiming New Yorkers, mature into someone capable of writing such a thoughtful and largely innocent work. Not that Milk & Cheese wasn't genius or anything because it sure as hell was.