The works of Edgar Allan Poe have captivated readers’ imaginations for centuries, and this adaptation by Gareth Hinds brings a visual representation to the frightening themes of many of his poems.
Taking six of Poe’s works from The Mask of the Red Death to his most famous of all, The Raven, Hinds creates a stylistic world through each panel with a engaging use of color.
The Mask of the Red Death shows the bon vivant nature of the aristocracy trying to avoid the spread of disease by locking themselves away from the common folks and throwing an unending celebration. Inevitably, they all succumb to death.
This adaptation transitions well from piece to piece. The Cask of Amontillado depicts the madness that comes with revenge, while the bright colors used in Annabel Lee don’t detract from its heartbreaking message of love lost – something Poe was all too familiar with. The terrifying sequence of events in The Pit and the Pendulum begin in a chilling moment of darkness that even the eventual escape from it into the light brings no real relief.
Gareth Hinds does a great job with two of Poe’s most famous works: The Tell Tale Heart and The Raven. Both are about men seeking relief; one from the pale blue eye of an old man and the other from the longing of an old love. Absolution throughout Poe’s work is never achieved; knowledge and madness perhaps, but never absolution.
All in all, this is a great representation of Edgar Allan Poe’s works that I think both new readers and old will enjoy. For new readers, the art shows an understanding for the more intricate message in Poe’s poems, and for those who are already well acclimated to Poe, it’s a nice recompense, having the art elements attached and being able to experience Poe’s works in a different format. In all, if you’re a fan of poetry, Poe, or gothic tales, I would highly recommend this.