#31in31 2018: “Anthony Bourdain’s Hungry Ghosts”

This collection of Vertigo comics by chef, traveler and late great foodie delves into ghosts, monsters and other sorts of creepies, all tied in with a food theme. A man who loves (to eat) horses, a chef who picked up a hell of a parasite, and more, there’s plenty of strange and unusual tales to paw through on this lovely Halloween.

Some stories end abruptly, and left me wanting a fuller, more fleshed-out story that let things linger a bit longer. “Deep” could have been teased out to a more substantial issue length, but drops the twist with unsatisfying suddenness. “Cow Head”, “The Pirates” and “Salty Horse” also felt wrapped up too soon. Give me more creepy! But seeing so many incredible comic artists – including one of my personal favorites, Francesco Francavilla – gave me plenty to drool (and shudder) over. And the stories, even the ones that are all too quickly wrapped, are definitely shudder-worthy.

This is a fun, spooky and quick read for folks looking to get some folklore with their horror. Plus, there are recipes to try straight from Bourdain himself, along with covers of the original individual issues, an illustrated appendix of monster myth that the comics delved into. And who doesn’t love extras?

RIP, Tony. May you be in the largest food market in the other realms…and may you never be hungry. Happy Halloween to one and all.

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