‘Kerry and the Knight of the Forest’
By Andi Watson
(2020, 268 pages, Genre: Graphic Novel, Fairytales)
Kerry and the Knight of the Forest, by Andi Watson, is an adventure with roots in familiar fairytales of yore. It’s an age-old story from the get-go: a young man, while obtaining medicine for his sick parents, becomes lost in an old, creepy forest. Thematically speaking, there’s nothing really new happening here. Watson’s story, though very entertaining, is typical good vs. evil, fairytale fare.
The medium, however, is what makes Kerry and the Knight of the Forest truly unique. Watson’s distinct illustrations make his world come to life. The character designs, especially the monsters, are spooky enough to be foreboding and unusual, but no so much as to scare younger readers. The illustrator strikes a nice balance here to mirror how Kerry is feeling as he is lost in the woods: full of wonder, yet uneasy, as well.
What really struck me about the illustrations, though, was the color palette and texture of the art. The colors used throughout the story are perfectly chosen to elicit the sensation of being lost in the woods. Washed out green and brown hues turn into bruise-like purple and blues as Kerry navigates deeper into the forest. Watson highlights these earthy tones with pops of unusual colors to maintain the feelings of being in a peculiar, unfamiliar place. These colors are coupled with unique textures on the trees and rocks to make Watson’s art almost mesmerizing to look at.
This is a great graphic novel for young readers who enjoy fairytales or creepy, environmental stories!
Visit Concord Public Library at concordpubliclibrary.net