The Dire Days of Willowweep Manor by Shaenon K. Garrity, illustrated by Christopher Baldwin. Margaret K. McElderry Books, 2021. 9781534460874
Rating: 1- 5 (5 is excellent or a Starred review) 4
What did you like about the book? In this graphic novel, Haley, a teen obsessed with gothic novels, finds herself trapped in an alternate universe. Haley is a young Black woman who dresses in the long flowing dresses of her favorite novels and ignores the taunts of her peers. At first, Haley is excited to find herself in a world that reflects her love of gothic romance, with brooding antiheroes, a strange housekeeper, secret passages and a ghost. But Willowweep Manor is actually a science fiction universe wrapped in the trappings of gothic romance. It exists to keep an evil entity at bay. Soon Haley is helping save this other universe in order to find a way back to her own. The illustrations complement the story with varying perspectives, expressive characters and lots of action. A fun combination of gothic romance and science fiction.
Anything you didn’t like about it? No
To whom would you recommend this book? Hand this to readers who enjoyed Nimona by Noelle Stevenson and Gunnerkrigg Court by Tom Siddell.
Who should buy this book? Public libraries and high school libraries
Where would you shelve it? YA/Graphic Novels
Should we (librarians/readers) put this at the top of our “to read” piles? No
Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA
Date of review: August 30, 2021