“The Black Diamond Detective Agency by Eddie Campbell

Eddie Campbell’s Black Diamond Detective Agency is an engaging graphic novel, beautifully painted and in a lovely paperback edition typical of publisher First Second. A man with a past is framed in small town America on the verge of the 20th century. Though the story is sometimes hard to follow, mostly because of several characters who aren’t sufficiently visually distinct, the mystery is unraveled in entertaining, CSI-fashion. The ending is pleasingly awry, avoiding the cliches by not tying things up too neatly. DArk and violent, though with an edge of humor and redemption, it’s reminiscent of Clint Eastwood westerns, A History of Violence, Victorian mysteries, and Campbell’s other work like From Hell.

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