‘Brynmore’ by Steve Niles and Damien Worm – Graphic Novel ARC Review


From the creators of The October Faction, Steve Niles (30 Days of Night) & Damien Worm, comes a new horror tale!

Recently divorced and sober, Mark Turner has returned to his hometown looking for a second chance. He’ll rebuild the old church into a new home…if the locals let him. But Turner Island has a secret, one tracing back to when it was named after Mark’s ancestors. Who, or what, is Brynmore?

Title – Brynmore

Author(s) – Steve Niles; Damien Worm (artist/illustrated by)

Publisher – IDW Publishing

Genre – Horror/Thriller [Adult fiction]

Chapters – “NA”

Pages – 136 (PDF/ADE)

Cover – 10/10! (AMAZING!)

Release Date – 26 March, 2024

The adrenaline rush that one experiences while reading a comic/graphic novel is at a totally different level (most certainly for me!), especially when it seems to combine your favorite tropes/elements! And while going through the said category over at Edelweiss, I happened to spot ‘Brynmore’. Right off the bat – the cover is definitely eye-catching to say the least. That was reason enough for me to hit the ‘Request’ button immediately… and that’s exactly what I did! The preview of the initial few pages/illustrations was very promising, and the description left me wanting for more.

I mean, check this out – a person with a troubled past returns home; a remote island off the coast as a setting; a church with a secret; supernatural elements involved… sure sounds exciting, right? What it reminded me of straight away was the Netflix miniseries of 2021 – Midnight Mass. It also has pretty much all the aforementioned themes… and I honestly enjoyed the show! No doubt, I was really looking forward to getting my hands on the graphic novel!

And so, I would like to extend my heartfelt gratitude to Edelweiss, the publishers – IDW Publishing, and the author(s) for providing me with a copy of the digital ARC.

Now, having said that, the question still remains – who (or what) is ‘Brynmore’?

The story kicks off with our protagonist, Mark Turner, making his return to Turner Island. Named after his great-great-great-grandfather, the small island off the coast of North Carolina is where Mark grew up. With alcohol having destroyed his life, he has finally decided to turn sober for good, and is now looking to try and reinvent himself or maybe just find himself at a place he once called “home”. But not everybody on the island is happy about a Turner stepping foot where it shouldn’t be. The island has a secret of its own… a dark and horrific past which changed everything and everyone involved back then, including the island itself, forever…

Back on the island, Mark wants to turn the old church, which has been abandoned for years now, into his new house. While in the process of doing so, he befriends Buddy the dog, and Becca Lynch who lives in the next lot. Everything seems to be going along just fine for Mark when a personal family issue involving his teenage daughter Sophie and his recently divorced wife Mary, and a particular incident with the locals, sets in motion the events that nobody could ever see approaching… The chapel is not just any other old and abandoned structure. It is hiding something… something which should have been left alone… (and we know how it goes from here, right?)

I just want to know what I’m dealing with.

You have unleashed horror and death…

I don’t understand.

They never do until it’s too late.

A terrible thing has been set loose, and the unsuspecting citizens of Turner Island are about to be plunged into a nightmare unlike any other… The downtown, the docks, the lighthouse, and even the nice beach isn’t safe… as darkness and evil take over…

What was really nicely done?

  • First off – the artwork/illustrations. Really loved the style! The kind of vibes that I felt from them was just great!
  • The story was actually pretty good (for most parts), and I enjoyed it!
  • The first half, albeit being a tad bit slow with all the setting up, was good.
  • The atmosphere in and around the island was nicely put forth.
  • The past/background of the island was a good highlight.
  • The ending was satisfactory.

What didn’t quite work for me?

  • While the first half was good, the second half didn’t quite impress me that much, and felt a little bit underwhelming.
  • The characters didn’t quite pack the punch.

Other info.

  • Different artworks by the artist/illustrator, Damien Worm, are present in between the story, and acted as page breaks. Loved the artwork there as well!
  • Also, like a bonus, multiple artworks by various artists are present at the end too!
  • Note: – Mature themes are present throughout (not suitable for younger audiences).

Final thoughts

I had a pretty good time with it! The artwork was great, and the story for most parts was pretty good. The vibes/feels of the island were nicely presented in my opinion, and the horror element was well done too. And although the second half was a little underwhelming, as a graphic novel, I liked it overall. Would certainly recommend that you check it out!