… the Boogeyman who steals children? The Stuff of Legend. Book 1: The Dark is a graphic novel about a group of toys who try to rescue their Boy after he is stolen by the Boogeyman. When the toys go into the Dark, they become larger and more lifelike – the stuffed bear becomes a full-sized bear (although he keeps the bow around his neck), the metal soldier looks like a human soldier and can use the items stored in his pack, and so on. However, they quickly learn that their new forms can be hurt, even killed, and their Boy is no longer directing the action to ensure that they always win. The Dark is filled with other enlivened toys, some independent and some who owe loyalty to the Bogeyman.
The story is set in 1944, and the style of the toys reflects that. The artwork is realistic and highly detailed, although limited to sepia tones in color, which adds to the historic flavor. Some dark themes and violence aim this book at adults, or at least older children. The excellent writing, developing characters, and attention to detail make this book hard to put down, and I am eager for the next in the series.
Reviewed by Fran (staff)