MR. MURDER IS DEAD By Victor Quinaz and Brent Schoonover

By Victor Quinaz and Brent Schoonover
Publisher Archaia

Guns, nightclubs, dames, and over the top villains. This book offers them all in a perfect package. Gould Kane AKA The Spook is a retired
investigator. He’s paunchy. He’s worn down. He’s a drunk. In short, he’s a total wash up. When his old nemesis turns up dead, he can’t help but be drawn into the investigation both as suspect and detective.

The authors’ love of old comics and detective stories explode off of
every page. Memories of the Spook’s life are drawn as 30’s, 50’s, and
70’s comic strips, giving the scenes a beautiful sense of nostalgia
countered by the harsh, sharp reality of the art of the current day. The book is populated by villains like Mr. Murder, Bulldog, Timmy Tough, Book Smart, and Billy the Kidd. In the flashbacks, we see them as Dick Tracy-like stooges. When we see them in the modern day, they are as worn down and psychologically broken as The Spook himself. They aren’t just foils for a good guy to put away; they are people with real issues, real goals, and real loves.

This is a perfect murder mystery, propelled by the relationships that
The Spook has formed, both with his allies and his enemies over decades on the job. The plot is sharp and blazingly fast-paced. The art is beautiful and so richly stylized that you’ll find yourself lingering over pages long after you have finished reading them. The characters are real and occasionally heartbreaking renditions of the archetypal detective story roster.

This was one of the best comics I have read in a very long time. The
art, the characters, and the story all blend together into a perfect
book. It is dark, exciting, funny, and tragic. Once I opened it, it was utterly impossible to set aside until I had unraveled every plot forged in the dark alleys of Kane’s world. Mr. Murder may be dead, but I hope The Spook will live on in many more stories from this amazing duo!

-Bryan VanMeter