Writers: Shannon Watters & Branden Boyer-White
Artist: Berenice Nelle
Colorists: Kaitlyn Musto, Kieran Quigley, Gonçalo Lopes
Letterer: Jim Campbell
Cover Artist: Naomi Franquiz
Release Date: September 28, 2022
Reviewer: Lukke Sweet
The Headless Horseman of Sleepy Hollow is a familiar legend to many, but what happened to the town’s descendants? Shannon Watters & Branden Boyer-White want to answer that question through the eyes of newcomer Isabel Crane in the pages of Hollow. It’s not long before she finds herself embroiled in a recreation of the legend alongside her classmates. Throughout all of this, she’s forced to struggle with the challenges of being a new student and the perils of young love.
Watters & Boyer-White dive deep into the Legend of Sleepy Hollow as they go about recreating the town for a modern age. Readers familiar with the legend will notice familiar names among the key characters such as Crane and Van Tassel. They take this a step further as plots of the legend are mirrored within the story. One example of this is the mild tension between Izzy and Croc for Victoria Van Tassel’s affection being similar to how Ichabod Crane and Brom Bones vying for the hand of Katrina Van Tassel. Without getting into spoilers, Hollow features everything you could expect: danger, love, and of course, The Headless Horseman.
Watters & Boyer-White have created a modern Sleepy Hollow that is believable and full of likable characters. Izzy Crane, our intrepid hero, resents her sudden transplant to the quaint hamlet of Sleepy Hollow. She soon meets the other teens of the area, including football player, Croc, and the leading lady, Vicky Van Tassel. These characters are charming and bring a refreshing look at the angst of teenage life. More than the adventures they have together, the friendships and relationships that they develop help to them feel complex and three-dimensional.
The art of Hollow fits the feeling and tone of the book perfectly. Berenice Nelle’s style is full of curves and soft edges. This helps to curb the tension of the story and make it a more enjoyable read. The colors of Kaitlyn Musto, Kieran Quigley, and Gonçalo Lopes makes this especially true. The vibrancy of the colors is used to great effect as it helps to differentiate each scene, specifically when it comes to switching between night and day. Musto, Quigley, and Lopes also do a tremendous job of splitting the coloring duties, seamlessly switching between each section.
Hollow is a fun graphic novel. An easy read, it hits all the right notes and only falters in that it was over too quickly.