Mirka Andolfo's Mercy

The Fair Lady, The Frost, and The Fiend

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Pub Date Dec 08 2020 | Archive Date Mar 10 2024

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PENNY DREADFUL meets MONSTRESS in this feminist Victorian horror by the creator behind the bestselling graphic novels UNNATURAL and SWEET PAPRIKA!

Mercy, a goth-inspired, Victorian monster series explores topics of “otherness,” damnation and redemption, and what it means to be a monster in a horror graphic novel perfect for fans of Penny Dreadful, Crimson Peak, The Alienist, Parasol Protectorate, and Dark Shadows.

This new graphic novel by acclaimed creator Mirka Andolfo (Unnatural) is a gothic horror tale where mysteries and unspeakable sins are blended together in a unique and sensual way.

Washington State, late nineteenth century. During the frenzied historical era commonly known as the Klondike Gold Rush, a mysterious woman arrives in Woodsburgh, a small mining town close to the Canadian border.

It's been a few years since the Swanson mine was closed following the terrible accident that claimed the lives of so many men and women, including the owner's and the city it's still struggling in search for a new place on the map of the country.

Elegant and extraordinarily wealthy, Lady Hellaine arrives in the city accompanied by her faithful butler Goodwill and settles in one of the most luxurious mansions in town. A lifestyle that contrasts sharply with that of the majority of the population, forced to choose between humble crafts and illegal activities.

No one is aware of the reasons that led such a classy lady to move from Seattle to the small village, but her arrival certainly did not go unnoticed. Especially in the eyes of Lady Swanson, widow of the late mine owner and leading figure of the local bourgeoisie. Lady Hellaine's plans will bring her on a collision course with the powerful Lady Swanson, who, for reasons not entirely rational, distrusts the newcomer.

Meanwhile, the streets and surroundings of Woodsburgh are flooded in blood: a heinous creature is killing incautious citizens, wreaking havoc on their bodies. Enough to induce local authorities to impose a strict curfew after sunset.

And with the falling of the first snow, the “Woodsburgh Devil”'s fury seems to have even increased. What's the connection, if any, between this disturbing presence and the ivory-skinned stranger?

Who is Lady Hellaine, really? And what's her secret agenda?

Collects Mirka Andolfo's Mercy #1-6, the complete story.
PENNY DREADFUL meets MONSTRESS in this feminist Victorian horror by the creator behind the bestselling graphic novels UNNATURAL and SWEET PAPRIKA!

Mercy, a goth-inspired, Victorian monster series...

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ISBN 9781534316584
PRICE $16.99 (USD)

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Average rating from 73 members

Featured Reviews

Wickedly beautiful artwork and a captivating story! I had to read this twice. If you love graphic novels, you will not want to pass up on this one. I did not know what to expect because this was my first graphic novel read in a long time. I am HOOKED! I don’t want to give anything away but somehow it captures so much on every page with the artwork. I cannot imagine what it would be to hold this artwork in your hand because the screen doesn’t do it justice.

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Thanks to NetGalley and Image Comics for a copy of Mercy.

3.5 rounded up to 4.

Mercy is a gothic historical horror, set in the late 19th century in the small town of Woodsburgh, which is a mining town. In the town, a monster is brutally killing people; around the same time, a gorgeous stranger arrives. Is there a connection, and can the people stop the creature from killing more of the townsfolk?

I really thought the artwork for this graphic novel was stunning. The story was interesting too - creature features are always fun, and with a little bit of revenge mixed in, it was definitely an intriguing concept. The story did kind of fall flat for me; I just thought parts were a little disjointed and hard to follow. There were also a lot of characters and their connections weren't made super clear, so it was difficult to keep a lot of them straight. I also would have liked to know more back story for the main character. We get pieces by the end of the novel, but I feel like it wasn't fully fleshed out the way I would have hoped for.

Overall, this was a decent story, but the artwork was definitely the best part in all of it.

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Mirka Andolfo's Mercy: The Fair Lady, The Frost, and The Fiend is full of betrayal, mystery, and cosmic horror.

This is a story of a found family (of sorts). But before all of that, the mysterious lady comes to town and with her brings attention to a host of terrifying slayings that are happening all across the city. Who is involved and who is behind all of these devastating losses? This is answered with gusto in this graphic novel that I flew through and fell in love with.

I enjoyed the twists and turns that this story took. Not only was it full of beautiful illustrations that immediately grabbed my attention, but these illustrations made me FEEL the connections between these characters. I think it portrayed the emotional impact of this story. I was taken aback at how much fun this story was to go through. Not only is it full of action sequences and mysteries that need to be solved, but it also has a host of loveable characters that you will grow to love (or hate).

The tagline says you'll like this if you enjoyed Penny Dreadful and that is absolutely true. I am a massive fan of that series and this story brought me right back to why I love these period pieces so much. I think you will enjoy this as much as I did, so check it out!

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I loved the art! It was visually so stunning. I actually really enjoyed the story. I wasn't sure where they were going to go with it at first. I would say it was more horror than gothic in my opinion.

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An excellent gothic horror read! Mirka Andolfo brings his classic sense of twisted horror to the comic page again. And in classic Andolfo style, nothing is quite as it may seem, twice over. The twists and turns in this story (and that the characters have) are all well done and lead the reader to a place of realizing that no one is really good or bad. We’re all just trying to exist in the happiest way possible. Even if that’s at the expense of others.
There’s also a cleverly veiled warning about taking too many drugs; and putting your faith in people you don’t really know well.
Overall I adored this. Not only the wonderful comic illustrations; but how clever the writing is. And you can’t go wrong with the variant covers for the individual comics. Each one of them is an absolute gem of art.

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The story starts with a mine infestation, a mine infestation of monsters. A lady enters the little town. It is a horrifying yet exhilarating novel. A perfect binge read

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Thank you to NetGalley for this opportunity. Comics is now available.

This was a fun feminist Victorian horror read with beautiful art work and a captivating story.

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Fans of Mirka Andolfo (Unnatural, Un/Sacred) will be thrilled to hear about her latest project, Mercy. It's a terrifying and thrilling new horror series full of vibrant (and memorable) artwork.

One small town has been afraid of the Woodsburgh Devil for years. Yet only a small number of people truly understand the origins of the creatures – and why they plague the town so. Enter Lady Hellaine, a newcomer to the town but one who has made an effort to obfuscate her intent.


Before I dive into my review, I would like to say that Mercy is as haunting as beautiful. That means that this series isn't exactly for the faint of heart, as some very serious and intense subjects will be broached (and portrayed) throughout this graphic novel.

I originally read Mercy as individual issues, and even now, after reading the full graphic novel, I still can't get over this series. It was brilliant, beautiful, and so freaking terrifying. I loved every minute of it.

There's no doubt that Mercy has some of the best artwork I've seen in quite some time – it's simply striking. However, it does greatly increase the impact of certain horror elements, which Mirka Andolfo uses.

On that note, can I just say that I am extremely impressed with Mirka Andolfo? She wrote the whole series and provided most of the artwork (lettering is one of the only exceptions). Holy cow, that's some talent right there!

The tone and style of this series are perfect. It blends Victorian style with horror, resulting in something that feels so very...other. If that doesn't sound terrifying, think again. Shockingly, the human element added the most shock and fear, at least as far as I'm concerned. It provided a reason to care, but it's more than that. Really, it all comes down to Andolfo's writing, and it was enchanting.

It's also heartbreaking, and mostly, I mean that in a good way. If you want a feel-good story, this is not a series to dive into. But it is the perfect series to experience something completely different.

Gothic Horror
Romantic Subplot
Mirka Andolfo

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Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for allowing me to read and review this book.

Last year I read Andolfo’s Unnatural and LOVED it. I did not know at the time about this book, and did not put two and two together until the last couple of pages where Unnatural was sort of advertised. This is a completely different book than Unnatural in so many ways. For one, this is a horror, and a well written one. There’s a little bit of John Carpenter’s The Thing going on in this story, but it’s more human and personal with the monsters.

We’re given backstories for the main characters, as well as insight into why the monsters do what they do. There is a lot that isn’t clear in this book, but that opens it up for sequels. The ending was very surprising, but interesting and satisfying in a dark way. I can see this being turned into a horror film. The art is as beautiful as it is terrifying, and the storyline seemed solid and well written. There were a lot of gross parts (it has to do with eating) so don’t eat while you’re reading. There is sex and nudity in here as well, so I wouldn’t recommend this for children until 16, although I was reading worse younger than that.

I would describe this as Wild Wild West meets The Thing.

Great read, although I may have nightmares and not want to meet new people anymore, heh.

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The Pacific Northwest during the late 1800s! Alien (?) parasites! A town just getting by, but with rumors of a mysterious being killing folks after a devastating mine explosion years prior! The tricky moral thoughts about what it is to be a mother, or what it is to be connected to other humans! Or just other beings...?

Mirka Andolfo's Mercy is a full-color, fully contained (all six issues of the comic are in this volume) graphic novel containing: all of the above. The horror aspects were really gross (this is a positive considering the subject matter) with gorgeous art throughout and there were several twists I didn't see coming (always a positive!).

Thank you to NetGalley and Image Comics for the eARC in exchange for review!

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A beautifully illustrated gothic tale of love and death. A bit confusing in the beginning, but the tale will suck you in as memories unravel.

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Wow, where do I even begin with "Mercy"? Let me just say, I might not have understood everything that went down, but I absolutely loved the journey it took me on!

"Mercy" is a spellbinding historical horror/SFF crossover that's as unsettling as it is captivating. Filled with monsters, both human and otherwise, it strikes a perfect balance between eerie, tragic, and romantic elements. The artwork in this graphic novel is simply unmatched, drawing readers into a world of intricate detail and spine-chilling scenes. Admittedly, I found myself a bit lost at times, especially during the intense action sequences where the fine lining blurred the lines between monsters. But hey, that's more of a "me" thing than a flaw with "Mercy" itself.

I wholeheartedly recommend this masterpiece to anyone who appreciates beautiful, fantastical horror graphics and doesn't mind a healthy dose of bloodshed.

Now, let's talk about why "Mercy" deserves a solid 5-star rating:

1. **The Story**: It's unique, it's cool, and it grabbed me right from the start. While it's hard to put into words exactly what it's about, the story is a captivating whirlwind of horror and intrigue.

2. **Artwork**: The illustrations set the perfect tone, bringing every scene to life with stunning detail. Mirka Andolfo's artwork is simply breathtaking and adds immense depth to the narrative.

3. **Characterization**: The characters are well-written and deeply intriguing. Unlike some horror stories where characters feel disposable, I found myself genuinely caring about the fate of the characters in "Mercy."

4. **Excitement and Intensity**: Each issue is packed with excitement and intensity, ensuring that readers are always on the edge of their seats. I never once felt bored while diving into the world of "Mercy."

5. **Horror Elements**: From badass monsters to disturbing violence, "Mercy" delivers on the horror front without relying solely on gore. The atmosphere is perfectly eerie, and Andolfo's mastery of body horror is on full display.

6. **Unpredictability**: One of the greatest strengths of "Mercy" is its ability to keep readers guessing. The story takes unexpected turns, keeping you hooked until the very end.

7. **Romantic Elements**: While not the main focus, the romantic elements in the story add depth and emotion to the narrative, making it even more compelling.

8. **Emotional Impact**: "Mercy" packs an emotional punch, drawing readers into the characters' struggles and triumphs.

9. **Satisfying Ending**: The ending ties up the story beautifully while leaving room for future exploration. I, for one, am eagerly anticipating any sequels that may come our way.

In conclusion, "Mercy" is a gothic horror masterpiece that deserves all the praise it receives. Mirka Andolfo's talent shines through in every aspect of this comic, from the stunning artwork to the cleverly crafted narrative. If you're a horror fan, this is an absolute must-read!

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Confession… I didn’t give a crap what this graphic novel was about because THAT COVER!!!! And I knew if that cover was the gorgeous the artwork would be too and I was not let down. It’s hard to explain because the colours were like dark but monochrome but colourful at the same time ahhha. The style was beautiful. So because I didn’t know what the book about so I was a bit surprised the direction it went lol, but not in a bad way. I like how the time period felt like Victorian but also a bit old time western hahaha. Loved it.
I would recommend this to graphic novel readers of any type.

I received this ARC copy from Netgalley complimentary for an honest review.

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I absolutely loved this story! The graphics were vibrant and entrancing! This is a new category for me and I can’t wait to read more!

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Wow. This was so epic! I am so happy this is the fully collection of Mercy because there were so many points I felt I would’ve needed more. The end is satiating. The monsters are hungry. The town is full of poor people just trying to make ends meet and the people who exploit them. This comic series is so darkly gorgeous.

This comic is gorgeously drawn. It’s colored pages are often as beautiful as they are grotesque. This is definitely aimed at an adult audience. It took me longer than it would normally take for me to finish this book because of how beautiful the illustrations were. The monsters are truly monsterous and the humans themselves were also none too perfect.

The two main parts of this story that truly hooked me were the monsters and their unique inhumane humanity and the relationship between Lady Hellaine and Rory a little girl who sees her as an Angel and calls her mom. It is so cool how these monsters take over as parasites and reck havoc on the town, but what makes them so fascinating to me is the humanity. The memories of the hosts giving them feelings that their original being would have never felt before.

Lady Hellaine is one of these monsters and she is a force to be reckoned with. Yet her hosts body still remembers what it means to be a mother and meeting and taking in Rory is such an out of character thing for Hellaine to do yet she does it anyway. Their relationship makes Lady Hellaine question morality and makes her feel emotions in ways the monster in her never could. The exploration of that kind of deep introspection in these comics had me reading and thinking and gasping in awe all at the same time.

I highly recommend this comic collection! This is definitely one that I hope to find in store and keep as part of my physical collection. It is beautiful. It is haunting. It is impossible to put down once you begin.

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Super fun comic with wonderful art and dialogue. Very easy to get into and relax. The story is very interesting and captivating. Definitely want to read more by this author

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Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

My Selling Pitch:
Do you like stunning art, sexy ladies, and gore? The synopsis nailed it. This is the love child of Monstress and Penny Dreadful.

Absolute cover porn.

Thick of it:
This art is gorgeous.

I love how this artist draws eyes.

The dialogue is a little choppy and sometimes it’s hard to tell who’s talking.

The colors of this are just beautiful.

This comic is so diverse, and everyone is a stone-cold hottie.

Make sure you slap some big ol’ titties on the corpse so you still know it’s a lady.

Ooo nice twist. Didn't know if it was a wrap it up hunky dory style stand-alone.

“If you will not accept my affection, you may have my wrath” is a metal line.

Goddamn, what a good origin story. I hope there’s more

This was gorgeous. The story wasn't anything new, but it was well executed. I would love to read more.

It's hard for me to critique graphic novels. I'm like wow, I would've liked a bit more character depth and backstory, but I’m also aware of how much work goes into every single panel. You've gotta get your story across so fast and still wow people with the visuals. This book definitely delivers on the visuals. The story is perfectly fine. It does what it needs to do. There’s no nuance to it to push it into 5-star territory for me. But if you like some gory possession stories, you should definitely pick this up.

It's self-contained enough that it can be a standalone if you're down for a no-think, just vibe read, but it leaves a lot of questions left that I hope more of the series will answer.

Who should read this:
Femme art fans
Alien fans
Victorian fans

Do I want to reread this:
Honestly, kinda. The art’s that pretty.

Similar books:
* Monstress by Marjorie M. Liu-girlypop is possessed by an alien monster, fairytale retelling graphic novel
* The Breath of Things: the Mist-Walker by Stephane Fert-fairytale vibes, witchy, femme art graphic novel
* Squad by Maggie Tokuda-Hall-femme werewolf art, high school drama graphic novel
* Nimona by N. D. Stevenson-morally gray characters, fairytale vibes, graphic novel

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First, the art in this comic is so horrifically beautiful in the most disturbing way.
Second, the plot was far deeper and almost, wholesome, than I'd been expecting. Watching her have to come to terms with a strange version of her own humanity was fascinating and more than a little heart wrenching. A terrifying yet beautiful story.

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Rating: 4.5

Thank you NetGalley and Image Comics for the opportunity to read this comic. The review is my own honest opinion.

Overall, I quite enjoyed this comic. The art was absolutely beautiful and I found myself pausing on sections to really study and admire each panel. The shading and coloring was all so vibrant and pleasing, even the monsters were vibrant. As was the linework, and all of the character designs and landscapes.

The setting is my absolute favorite. Gothic horror, Victorian times, gritty and tragic, in the winter time for most of the story. I found myself getting sucked in simply for the atmosphere of this story.

The story itself? I was quite intrigued and went from pacing myself to finishing the back half of the collection in one sitting because things escalated and I needed to know what happened next. Unfortunately, what lost half a star was the ending. It felt rushed, I was confused by some of the choices and ways things wrapped up. Perhaps if this stretched out to one more volume, to slow down the momentum of the ending to wrap up all of the pieces in a well timed way, it'd be less confusing.

I will say, overall I enjoyed this comic enough to want to go check out Andolfo's other comics! And pick up a physical copy of this one for my collection, of course.

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I love a good victorian fantasy graphic novel and this did not disappoint. A gothic horror monster story, a beautiful unknown woman arrives in a small town with professed plans to expand her businesses to the area. Meanwhile people are dying gruesome deaths. But the beautiful woman isn't as she appears, and the deaths in town have deeper roots.
The art was very well done and I really enjoyed this work. I'll be looking for more from this author.

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Gorgeous artwork that is at once lush and disturbing, and an interesting story. Mercy is a horror graphic novel with a gothic vibe set in the late 1800's. Into a small town with a history of violence and a mine that has been closed comes a beautiful and mysterious woman with something monstrous lurking within...

I'm not sure I fully caught everything that happened because there are a lot of moving pieces a an emphasis on visual storytelling, but I enjoyed this. It was creepy, had a cast of interesting characters, and a satisfying plot arc. Worth a look if it's your vibe! Note that it is horror and gets rather gory. I received a copy of this book for review via NetGalley, all opinions are my own.

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The book was on track to be perfect when suddenly it started info-dumping, monologuing, and throwing difficult-to-parse close-up action. I don't know if there were story gaps in all those paragraphs or I was missing things because suddenly it was SO MUCH. Completely changed the tone and took me out of it. But I really did enjoy most of it.

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I've recently read Andolfo's "UNNATURAL" series and absolutely adored the art style, so I was very interested in reading this graphic novel! I've read "Sweet Paprika" as well, but ended up dropping it, in spite of liking it well enough This novel features the same gorgeous art style as the one in "UNNATURAL". When it comes to the plot, the pacing is honestly all over the place, and there are way too many plot threads trying to be woven together. It ends up making the plot feel messy in certain sections and confusing in others. I understand WHY all of those threads are within the story, but you don't get any explanation until the very end of the book. If the story had one or two of those plot threads trimmed off or characters from certain threads combined, I feel like the pacing would be more steady. I did enjoy the overall concept! It managed to mix gothic horror and cosmic horror in an interesting way! However, be aware that this graphic novel is EXTREMELY gory. Yes, it's a horror, and gore is expected, but holy moly is it a gore-fest.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publishers for an advanced copy in exchange for my honest review!

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