Kerry and the Knight of the Forest

Random/Graphic. Jul. 2020. 288p. pap. $12.99. ISBN 9781984893291.
Gr 2-5–The Forest of Shadows stands between Kerry, who needs to deliver medicine to his ailing parents, and his home. From the moment the boy enters this malevolent, enchanted world, he’s led into danger by ill-intentioned animals and spirits at every turn. Upon meeting the Waystone, also known as the Knight of the Road, Kerry thinks he is safe at last but finds his journey is as perilous as ever. Despite Kerry’s top billing in the title, the Waystone proves to have the more complex backstory. The character design is low on detail yet still highly expressive. Watson relies on a wonderful array of contrasting textures and hatching techniques that punctuate the soft watermelon hues with a jarring black. When the hatching is combined with long and sweeping curves, they create a vivid world, despite most panels maintaining tight focus on Kerry and his immediate surroundings. The story steadily builds suspense as readers inch closer to discovering who or what is haunting the forest. Dungeons & Dragons–style character sheets and early renditions of the art are included in the back matter.
VERDICT An infectiously fun adventure that hints at danger without crossing the line into frightening. Put this into the hands of “Hildafolk” fans.

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