Now available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
Shadow Bay: A Noir Visual Novel
Donald Rothschild, art by William T. Ayton
Epigraph, 2012, $17.95
Rhinebeck’s Rothschild and Ayton invent their own genre for this hard-boiled tale of a sportswriter and an auburn-haired restaurateur who meet at a Gamblers Anonymous meeting and the racetrack, getting over their heads in corruption and murder. The pungent text and evocative black-and-white paintings don’t cohabit frames as in most graphic novels, but deliver the goods side by side, like a shot of whisky and a chaser.
And here is another review from the "Good Stories" section of the Hudson Valley News by Ann La Farge, Feb 8-14, 2012:
How to read a book if you don't understand what it is? I plan to email the author or illustrator, both of whom live in Rhinebeck, and ask them to tell me what a "noir visual novel" is. Meanwhile, I'll simply call it a graphic novel and that it's X-rated, so the kids don't get their hands on it.
"Shadow Bay", written by Donald J. Rothschild with over 300 illustrations by William T. Ayton (Epigraph, $17.95) has, as its anti-hero, David Fisher, a ne'er-do-well sportswriter for the local weekly newspaper — "the skinny little one" — and well-hooked bettor on the horses. He skips his meetings at Gamblers Anonymous, soon hooks up with a married hottie and fellow bettor, gets fired, loses all his money, and...yup, there's a murder. Follow this couple to Florida, where they open a restaurant and...oh, dear. "Life is a bitch with a harelip, and sometimes you gotta pucker up."
More on this one after I've spoken with the authors. Meanwhile, I wonder what other new and puzzling genres I'm missing out on.