American Vampire: Volume Two – Scott Snyder

After his contribution to volume one Stephen King has departed leaving Snyder to carry on alone. Gone is the dual format story that worked so well last time to be replaced by a more conventional narrative.

This volume contains two tales. The first is an action thriller and the second a more personal but still just as exciting tale. Both of them use characters from the previous book, some of whom we are very surprised to see.

The timeline has moved on to the 1930’s and it is interesting to see what has become of those we left a decade ago. New characters are introduced and although we might not see them again in the next instalment Snyder doesn’t skimp on the characterisation or emotional resonance. We also learn a lot more about the world of the vampires, both from the vampires themselves and the humans who hunt them.

The two stories are quite different in style and delivery but both are equally well suited and effortlessly told. The second is shorter and is mostly conveyed through various internal monologues, but it is a much more emotional piece. Both are full of surprises and very well paced. Snyder seems to be developing a style of slow burn start and frenetic finish.

The art is just as good as the first volume. A second artist was brought in (presumably for deadline reasons) but you don’t see any disparity in style. An interesting technique used is where scenes change rapidly the text will spill over from the previous scene into the new one. This does a great job of binding it all together and ramping up the pace.

Another great addition and a further Thumbs Up!

101/264.

Tomorrow: American Vampire: Volume Three – Scott Snyder

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