Courtney Crumrin, Vol. 1: Courtney Crumrin & The Night Things (Courtney Crumrin (Graphic Novels))

Courtney Crumrin: Night Things v. 1 - Ted Naifeh "Courtney Crumrin and the Night Things: Volume 1" is rife with dark humor and imaginative interactions, much of which I enjoyed for the most part. I wouldn't say it's the most engaging comic I've ever come across for its genre, but it is entertaining for an introductory read, and one I'd likely continue to see what happens.The titular protagonist is a young girl who, along with her parents, goes to live with her strange, but oddly alluring uncle. From there, Courtney has to deal with a little more than the average new girl. When you live in a town full of creepy things - talking cats, changelings, goblins, beasts, among others - it's a little more than the average kid can handle. Courtney, on the contrary, seems to embrace the weirdness in her new life with a smart, snarky attitude, and she isn't afraid to fight back. In retrospect, I found that I liked Courtney's character and was willing to follow her through her respective encounters.Despite places where the commonplace humor is a bit forced and cheesy, the story does have decent dark humor and situational focus. The episodic pursuits Courtney finds herself within are interesting, from one instance of magic gone wrong (when Courtney tries to fit in with her peers and ends up getting *too* much attention) to dealing with a doppelganger attempting to steal her identity. Those elements drew me in, though I'll admit that I wasn't necessarily drawn to many of the characters in this work other than Courtney and her uncle. I think that's probably the story's major Achilles heel, because the characters don't draw you into the work, and most of them (other than Courtney and her uncle) aren't even around long enough for you to get to know them.The art style is appealing, particularly in its darker, convoluted stylings. I liked both the full color and B&W panels the graphic novel showcased.It feels like the kind of story suited for those who like Grimm's Fairy Tales (especially in places where the story gives off a dark contrast) and those who like the paranormal in an episodic format may find the interactions among different creatures fun. Despite the age recommendation of 7 and up, I would say that this story is probably better suited for elder teens.Overall score: 3/5Note: I received this as an ARC from NetGalley, from the publisher Oni Press.