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The Drowned: A Tale of Mystery and Horror

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Paris, 1800. Theophile has been moldering in an asylum for five years with no clear memory of how he came to be there. He wavers in and out of madness until the day that unseen forces compel him to escape and make his way back home to the haunted Breton coast. As he follows the tatters of memory back to the ungodly events of his childhood, striving to wring sense out of ma Paris, 1800. Theophile has been moldering in an asylum for five years with no clear memory of how he came to be there. He wavers in and out of madness until the day that unseen forces compel him to escape and make his way back home to the haunted Breton coast. As he follows the tatters of memory back to the ungodly events of his childhood, striving to wring sense out of madness, he is pursued in turn by furious crows, drowned witches, a loved one long believed dead, a secret cabal of priests and a damaged orphan. Each carries pieces of a secret that emerges into two distinct but interwining tales of supernatural vengeance. As the ravages of Theophile's buried past catch up with him at last, a battle for power begins, and the stakes are no less than the fate of the lost souls in hell.


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Paris, 1800. Theophile has been moldering in an asylum for five years with no clear memory of how he came to be there. He wavers in and out of madness until the day that unseen forces compel him to escape and make his way back home to the haunted Breton coast. As he follows the tatters of memory back to the ungodly events of his childhood, striving to wring sense out of ma Paris, 1800. Theophile has been moldering in an asylum for five years with no clear memory of how he came to be there. He wavers in and out of madness until the day that unseen forces compel him to escape and make his way back home to the haunted Breton coast. As he follows the tatters of memory back to the ungodly events of his childhood, striving to wring sense out of madness, he is pursued in turn by furious crows, drowned witches, a loved one long believed dead, a secret cabal of priests and a damaged orphan. Each carries pieces of a secret that emerges into two distinct but interwining tales of supernatural vengeance. As the ravages of Theophile's buried past catch up with him at last, a battle for power begins, and the stakes are no less than the fate of the lost souls in hell.

30 review for The Drowned: A Tale of Mystery and Horror

  1. 4 out of 5

    Bitchin' Reads

    Well, guess it is a good thing I re-read this, because I apparently didn't rate or review it last year. As part of a reading challenge, I chose The Drowned for the "a debut novel" prompt. It is technically Laini Taylor's first published work alongside her husband and, oh hot damn, you can tell in this comic book that they both have some serious talent that is only going to mature going forward, and it did! Just like with my first read, I was blown away by the artwork and the storytelling. The styl Well, guess it is a good thing I re-read this, because I apparently didn't rate or review it last year. As part of a reading challenge, I chose The Drowned for the "a debut novel" prompt. It is technically Laini Taylor's first published work alongside her husband and, oh hot damn, you can tell in this comic book that they both have some serious talent that is only going to mature going forward, and it did! Just like with my first read, I was blown away by the artwork and the storytelling. The styles of both complemented each other incredibly--both are eerie, both give a great sense of a darker world hidden just beyond what the eye can see, and that is EXACTLY what happens with this comic. The story twists and turns and leaves you trying to piece together the puzzle. Is he a lunatic? What is really going on? Why would the sister's lover act the way her did? Even on this second go through I am left with some of these questions, but not in a "I'm unfulfilled way"; more along the lines of questions intentionally left open in a manner for readers to ponder like I have. I know this is a hard to come by comic book, and I feel honored to have come across one, but I encourage you to read it if it is accessible to you. I wish there were more to the story.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Toni

    How have I not noticed this existed before?

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kaysi

    Well I FINALLY got this! It took me so long to find it - hint for those who try to track it down, it's rare, and expensive! But, if you a true Laini fan (like me) or a Jim fan (like me), it is well worth it. This is the first actual graphic novel I've ever read (well I did read the Daughter of Smoke and Bone sampler Jim made - and still hoping he finishes it one day), some wasn't sure what to expect. Even though this isn't a "novel", it is still a great story: Laini still manages to grab and hol Well I FINALLY got this! It took me so long to find it - hint for those who try to track it down, it's rare, and expensive! But, if you a true Laini fan (like me) or a Jim fan (like me), it is well worth it. This is the first actual graphic novel I've ever read (well I did read the Daughter of Smoke and Bone sampler Jim made - and still hoping he finishes it one day), some wasn't sure what to expect. Even though this isn't a "novel", it is still a great story: Laini still manages to grab and hold your attention with her words (her writing style is a whole language of its own), and Jim's illustrations drag you further into this horrific world (and I say that with admiration, this is after all "a tale of mystery and horror)

  4. 5 out of 5

    Sooraya Evans

    Dull and boring. Tiresome to read the excessive lettering on certain pages.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Darcy (Daydreamingofbookdragons)

    (4.5) This was not an easy book to get my hands on, but I consider it worth it. It is my personal mission to get my hands on a copy of all the books Laini Taylor has written or helped write. I was a little worried going into this that because it was a graphic novel rather than a book, that we wouldn't get to see Laini Taylor's beautiful writing, but my fears were for naught. It was also lovely to see Jim Di Bartolo's beautiful art, and while colour would have been nice, the black and white theme (4.5) This was not an easy book to get my hands on, but I consider it worth it. It is my personal mission to get my hands on a copy of all the books Laini Taylor has written or helped write. I was a little worried going into this that because it was a graphic novel rather than a book, that we wouldn't get to see Laini Taylor's beautiful writing, but my fears were for naught. It was also lovely to see Jim Di Bartolo's beautiful art, and while colour would have been nice, the black and white theme suited the story. The story itself is not something that I would usually find all that interesting, I am neither a huge fan of historical stories or ones based around religion, but I did really enjoy this and got through it quite quickly. The story didn't feel rushed either, as I have found graphic novels I have read in the past to be, simply because they can't waste frames on small details and extra plot. And while this could easily be continued on as a series, it also had a definite ending so I don't feel like I have been left with a massive cliff-hanger.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Laura Kehoe

    Did you guys know Laini Taylor wrote a graphic novel?! I had never heard of it until a few months ago when I was lucky enough to win a copy (I've later learned that it is verrry hard to find, so I don't feel as bad for this lapse). Anyway, let's get to this review! I want to start this off by saying that I've only recently started getting into graphic novels, so I'm by no means an expert on them. But, this artwork truly is gorgeous! Jim Di Bartolo is an incredible artist. And, of course, Laini Ta Did you guys know Laini Taylor wrote a graphic novel?! I had never heard of it until a few months ago when I was lucky enough to win a copy (I've later learned that it is verrry hard to find, so I don't feel as bad for this lapse). Anyway, let's get to this review! I want to start this off by saying that I've only recently started getting into graphic novels, so I'm by no means an expert on them. But, this artwork truly is gorgeous! Jim Di Bartolo is an incredible artist. And, of course, Laini Taylor is a wonderful author as well. So it really is a great combination! The story was a little too odd for me, although I did appreciate a lot of aspects of it. The plot didn't always make sense, but I think that might have just been because of how short this story is. But I really enjoyed the incorporation of crows (I always have a soft spot for crows) and Theophile was such a fascinating character! If you enjoy graphic novels that are a little different than your typical superhero-saving-the-world type of story and don't mind being slightly creeped out, I think this is definitely worth checking out! I'm glad I was able to get my hands on a copy of this.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    My expectations did not match this book. When I said something along those lines to my husband, he asked me if that meant it was better or worse. Hmm. I can't really answer that - not better, not worse, just...unexpected. The art in this graphic novel was incredible. I just wish it could have been in color, but I do admit that the black-and-white drawings added a level of...mystery?...grimness?...to the Theo's tale that probably wouldn't have been captured had the pictures been colorized. And conti My expectations did not match this book. When I said something along those lines to my husband, he asked me if that meant it was better or worse. Hmm. I can't really answer that - not better, not worse, just...unexpected. The art in this graphic novel was incredible. I just wish it could have been in color, but I do admit that the black-and-white drawings added a level of...mystery?...grimness?...to the Theo's tale that probably wouldn't have been captured had the pictures been colorized. And continuing on about the drawings: some of them gave me a shiver. Totally did not expect that! Had I been in Theo's place, had I seen some of those women's faces up close and personal, I probably would have peed my pants. So, bravo Theo, for standing your ground and fighting the good fight. Those bitches had crazy eyes! I wonder if there's another graphic novel in the works? Because there was a very definite opening for further books, especially given that Theo learned a huge secret about himself (view spoiler)[though, I'm not entirely convinced that I got it, other than he's been bequeathed some ancient Templar power (hide spoiler)] , and managed to rustle himself up a knowledgeable and amiable sidekick. Seems ripe for another adventure, if you ask me! Just...can we make sure that any future books are reasonably priced? I mean, I paid fifty dollars for this copy. Let's pause so you can fully appreciate this: FIFTY. DOLLARS! (plus shipping!) My fascination with Laini Taylor makes me do crazy things, folks.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Braxton Church

    GRAPHIC NOVEL FANTASY PECHUA KUCHA PROJECT As someone unfamiliar with graphic novels, I enjoyed The Drowned. It tells the story of Theo, a young Frenchman who's sister was drowned thirteen years earlier. He returns to his hometown, and is confronted by his sister's ghost, who longs to escape from purgatory. The book is fast paced and a quick read, with amazing art and writing. However, I felt like the story wasn't anything too original, and I'm still a little confused by everything that happened by GRAPHIC NOVEL FANTASY PECHUA KUCHA PROJECT As someone unfamiliar with graphic novels, I enjoyed The Drowned. It tells the story of Theo, a young Frenchman who's sister was drowned thirteen years earlier. He returns to his hometown, and is confronted by his sister's ghost, who longs to escape from purgatory. The book is fast paced and a quick read, with amazing art and writing. However, I felt like the story wasn't anything too original, and I'm still a little confused by everything that happened by the end. But overall, I recommend it to anyone who loves horror or graphic novels.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jim

    I’m so glad I finally got my hands on this story from one of my favorite authors - Laini Taylor. Beautifully written, and gorgeously drawn by her husband Jim Di Bartolo check out this amazing take on good versus evil.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Albert

    I really love your story, it deserves a lot of audience. If you have some great stories like this one, you can publish it on NovelStar, just submit your story to [email protected] or [email protected]

  11. 4 out of 5

    April X

    I'm glad I got the opportunity to read this and add it to my Laini Taylor collection, and I liked the art, but I didn't completely understand the story, especially at the end. I'm glad I got the opportunity to read this and add it to my Laini Taylor collection, and I liked the art, but I didn't completely understand the story, especially at the end.

  12. 5 out of 5

    April

    The first few pages of this book are amazing. I loved the writing, but the art was of inconsistent quality and of a style I don''t particularly enjoy. one of my problems with the art was that many of the male characters looked too much alike making it difficlt to follow some of the action and dialogue. Overall this is a great work and I highly recommend it, but read it in one sitting not over the course of several days as I was forced to. You really loose the momentum of the story that way. The first few pages of this book are amazing. I loved the writing, but the art was of inconsistent quality and of a style I don''t particularly enjoy. one of my problems with the art was that many of the male characters looked too much alike making it difficlt to follow some of the action and dialogue. Overall this is a great work and I highly recommend it, but read it in one sitting not over the course of several days as I was forced to. You really loose the momentum of the story that way.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Emily

    I'd forgotten that I'd read this one before, but was perfectly happy to read it again. Very Poe-esque. The beginning doesn't give any indication of where it will end up; many good surprises (not that the surprises themselves were good--in fact, they were rather horrible for the characters!--but I didn't see them coming). I'd forgotten that I'd read this one before, but was perfectly happy to read it again. Very Poe-esque. The beginning doesn't give any indication of where it will end up; many good surprises (not that the surprises themselves were good--in fact, they were rather horrible for the characters!--but I didn't see them coming).

  14. 5 out of 5

    Genny Shafer

    I have thoroughly enjoyed every book written by Laini, except for this one. I had a hard time following along, and even staying interested. i feel bad saying this since i like all of her other writings...but i was not a fan.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Katherine

    On my quest to read all my favorite author's books, I inter library loaned this one from Oberlin... It cost me $13 just to read it... but to buy it would have been $30 so meh. Lots of wonderful dark Laini themes in this book. Can't wait to read what she writes next! On my quest to read all my favorite author's books, I inter library loaned this one from Oberlin... It cost me $13 just to read it... but to buy it would have been $30 so meh. Lots of wonderful dark Laini themes in this book. Can't wait to read what she writes next!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Jessie (Ageless Pages Reviews)

    Graphic novels are not my usual medium for stories so perhaps that's why I have to give a Laini creation less than 4-stars? There were some good points, but the story is hard to discern. The art is a bit hasty, it looks like. Graphic novels are not my usual medium for stories so perhaps that's why I have to give a Laini creation less than 4-stars? There were some good points, but the story is hard to discern. The art is a bit hasty, it looks like.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Heather Cohen

    Totally loved this!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    Just ordered this.. so happy to have found a copy that wasn't outragously priced! Can't wait to get it! Just ordered this.. so happy to have found a copy that wasn't outragously priced! Can't wait to get it!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Rebekah Gandy

    Very good!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Nilanjan Chakraborty

  21. 4 out of 5

    Helionreads Ü

  22. 4 out of 5

    Miramira Endevall

  23. 4 out of 5

    Gaby

  24. 5 out of 5

    Paul Reynolds

  25. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

  26. 4 out of 5

    Chelo Alino

  27. 5 out of 5

    Liz

  28. 4 out of 5

    Veronica

  29. 5 out of 5

    Lacey Nicole

  30. 5 out of 5

    Breanna

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