Original comics additions to best-selling fantasy series are one of the hottest trends in graphic novels these days, and here’s a new one which looks to continue that trend.
Kim Harrison’s The Hollows urban fantasy series has already sold over a million copies and now it’s joining the graphic novel world with BLOOD WORK, an original GN set in the Hollows world with art by Pedro Maia and Gemma Magno. The book was written by Harrison herself and goes on sale on July 12th.
The Hollows series is set in an alternate world where supernatural witches, vampires, werewolves and pixies lives alongside more regular humans. Rachel Morgan, a witch, is a detective who investigates crimes that involves both worlds. BLOOD WORK tells the story of how Morgan and her vampire partner Ivy Tamwood met for the first time and teamed up.
As a special treat for Beat readers, we’re also offering a giveaway of TWO SIGNED copies of the book. To enter send your name and address to beatgiveaway @ gmail.com with BLOOD WORK in the title. Winners will be chosen at random. Sorry, US readers only.
You can also enter Suvudu’s contest to win a pair of the funky boots seen on the cover of the book.
Just for The Beat we’re premiering pages 12 and 13. And here’s an exclusive essay by Kim Harrison on what she learned writing graphic novels, with commentary on these pages.
Comics, From a Novelist’s POV
Since this is the last stop on my blog tour celebrating the release of the first Hollows graphic novel Blood Work, I wanted to talk about how a person used to conceptualizing, developing, roughing in, editing, and polishing a piece of literature on their own, suddenly handles working with two, three, or more artists.
Short answer? Wow, how fun was that?
For someone who enjoys working long hours alone on a project that won’t see the shelf for years, it was ridiculously easy to slip into the team environment. Two of my favorite pages are shown here, where Ivy, my protagonist, is bad-temperedly waiting for her unwanted partner to investigate a possible drug drop. I remember writing a vague description along the lines of that it was sunset overlooking Eden Park, Kentucky in the background, and I got breathtakingly beautiful color. I sketched out the boxes with designations of “closeup of Rachel’s red splat gun,” and “long full-length shot of Rachel showing how sexy she can be when she gets ticked,” and what came back were visions of my characters that I’d only seen in my imagination. It was amazing to see what another artist would develop from a few simple sentences, and I enjoyed the experience greatly.
There were some issues, though. I had to fight to keep Rachel’s splat gun red. Her pinky ring kept disappearing. At one point we had to restructure an entire set of panels, because Eden Park is a real place, and I’d get e-mails if we didn’t fix the discrepancies.
The language barrier between me and my penciler was irksome, but not insurmountable, and I enjoyed seeing the first sketches come in, and then the second if a bit of tweaking needed to be done. My favorite part hands down was seeing the colored pages. My least favorite, cutting the dialog. I had thought my dialog was trim, but I learned the beauty of brevity.
Being a part of a team of talented, clever people was one of the most enjoyable parts of the process. I hope I can do it again. I think I’m getting better.
You can see my reasons for breaking from my traditional novels to script a graphic novel at Graphic Novel Reporter, how I wanted to visually show a complex emotion of blood lust at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books, and why I chose to tell the story of how Rachel and Ivy met at Fantasy Book Critic.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Kim Harrison is the author of the New York Times bestselling Hollows urban fantasy series, which most recently includes Black Magic Sanction and Pale Demon. She is also the author of the bestselling Madison Avery young adult series, and is a member of both the Romance Writers of America and the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS:
Pedro Maia recently finished college with a degree in art. Blood Work is one of his first full-length projects. He lives in Rio de Janeiro.
Gemma Magno was inspired to draw by anime and manga, and received a Presidential Award after winning several art competitions. She lives in the Philippines.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.