The New Ghost
The New Ghost is a beautifully comprised short graphic novel by Robert Hunter. A seemingly harmless tale of ghostly misadventure turns particularly sour as a stray ghost learns its nature and purpose. Hunter’s story tiptoes on the boundaries between childish fantasy and the sinister human conceptions of the afterlife.
Composition in The New Ghost is a mix of bold full page images of his imaginative architecture separated into panels that follow on from one another; whilst maintaining their continuity for overall viewing. Switching from natural to urban settings, Hunter’s colourful city will satiate your eyes. When the story and its ghostly characters start feeling more threatening, the pastel colour choices manage to save the story from being overtly sinister and still allows the final scenes to portray catastrophe in a bright neon explosion without deterring from the palette.
Rough around the edges, Hunter’s illustrations are charming, lively and his characters have a vivacious flexibility. The coarse lines and blocks of the imagery are refreshing, the loss of black lines and silhouettes are a joy and escape from traditional graphic novels.
His featureless ghost has the perfect voice of an unsure adventurer who does not yet know his meaning nor origin and the story hears him ramble toward this discovery. Hunter uses the first person narrative for this strange and incumbent being, who lurks and unwittingly creates havoc, in a delicate yet forthright way. The story is interesting and unpredictable and you may feel as though you are perhaps wandering through the musings of Hunter’s mind. The novel looks like an homage to two of Hunter’s dearest, however despite the personal matter, it still makes for an interesting and thought-provoking tale.
The graphic novel has a simple use of the English language but requires a use of tone when reading. Though this is expected when reading something in first person, but in a second language this can be even more difficult. The New Ghost is a confused and lost character who is trying to navigate a new world with a short amount of time.
An enchanting and morose perspective of the supernatural and the end of life. From the start it is dazzling and Hunter has an innovative knack for storytelling.
Use of English:
- Simplistic sentences
- Traditional language with short abrupt sentences for dramatic flair
- Stream of consciousness
To align – to arrange something specifically, usually in a straight line
Subtle – *pronounced without the “b”* – so delicate, difficult to describe/ cunning
Translucent – Somewhat see-through, allowing light but not fully formed shapes
Publisher: Nobrow Press
Writer: Robert Hunter
Artist: Robert Hunter
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