Graphic Novel Review: Secrets off Camp Whatever Vol. 1 by Chris Grine

Secrets of Camp Whatever Vol. 1 by Chris Grine. Oni Press, 2021. 9781620108628.

Willow is about to spend a week at the summer camp her dad attended as a kid. But the more he talks about it with folks in the diner in the town nearby, the weirder and more dangerous camp seems. And it turns out that the rumors might be true, that the island the camp iss on might be filled with ghosts and fog leeches and vampires and gnomes and witches and other magical, mythical creatures. The first hints things are going to get weird: the creepy clown at the dock where Willow boards the boat to head to camp, and the big hairy arm she sees poking out from under another camper’s bed.

This is an entertaining tale of friendship and the supernatural in which sign language plays a role. The way Grine draws faces in particular helps set a tone that’s both kind and kinda crazy, even in tense moments. Worth noting: there’s a callback to my favorite of Grine’s graphic novels, Chickenhare, early in the book, and big game hunter Clarence Tooter, the new camp director, is a bigfoot hunter who would be right at home in that book, too.


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