Good evening El Moochadores! Now out through Titan Comics is a haunting new graphic novel by English comic creator, Martin Stiff. The Absence is an entertaining collection of macabre comics full of guilty secrets surrounding a small town in Southren England that absolutely entertains! Here’s the synopsis:

As a coastal village in southern England struggles to recover from the losses of war, it is rocked by the return of a man long hoped dead: the disfigured Marwood Clay.absence-martin-stiff-Marwood-Clay

In a place where everybody hides a guilty past, and unspeakable past crimes lurk just beneath the surface… what terrible secrets has this exile brought back with him? And what happened during his absence?

While Marwood struggles to rebuild his life, newcomer Dr. Robert Temple builds a strange house for himself, on the hill overlooking the town. Clay is consumed by a nightmarish past he cannot remember, Temple by visions of a future he cannot prevent.

And then a young boy vanishes on Christmas Day…

Taking place just after World War II, the black and white story is illustrated in a sort of loose, “scratchy”, style. That is to say: the style of the art isn’t bad, in fact it’s very good and I enjoyed it. I think Stiff does an excellent job of communicating the dark emotions surrounding the village. He clearly illustrates a story full of melancholy, hate, distrust, and weird happenings that kept me engaged and turning pages. At the core of this story is Marwood (the unfortunate gentleman on the books cover) who has returned as an outcast to his home town after going to war. Marwood and his strange circumstance are at the core of this story and, as gruesome as he may appear to be, one of the best parts of this story. This really is a unique story that demonstrates that comics can be much more than super powers and spandex.

The Absence is now available in all major book stores or you can get your copy online at the Titan Comics website.

Below I’ve posted a few sample images from the book, but these only hint at an excellent story. Check them out, but then go get your own copy.


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