Denise Mina & Antonio Fuso - A Sickness in the Family (4 stars)

Scottish crime novelist creates concise and claustrophobic take on the graphic novel genre

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Denise Mina & Antonio Fuso - A Sickness in the Family

(Vertigo Crime)

After a successful run on Hellblazer in 2006, Scottish crime novelist Denise Mina returns to the ninth art, with this her first graphic novel. While there are hints of the supernatural here, A Sickness in the Family is essentially a murder mystery confined to a terraced house in Glasgow’s Hillhead, as the dysfunctional Usher family are torn apart by untimely death and homicide.

Removing the action from the grand country piles favoured by the likes of Agatha Christie, Mina creates a concise and claustrophobic take on the genre. This is a home where the family is falling apart along with the bricks and mortar as affairs, resentment and drugs all rear their head in a tale rife with suspicion and guilt. Antonio Fuso’s black and white art perfectly matches the tone of the narrative, and while you might guess the perpetrator before the final panel, it’s still a suitably bitter denouement.

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