Explosive publisher BOOM! Studios announced a new comic Wednesday called The Man Who Came Down the Attic Stairs, with comics creator Celine Loup weaving "a tale of horror and suspense that captures the isolation of postpartum depression, while exploring the very real fears associated with new motherhood." And if you couldn't guess from that description, The Man Who Came Down the Attic Stairs will be published by BOOM!'s artsy Archaia imprint, with the graphic novel hitting stores in September.
Emma is excited to start a family in her new home, but after her child's birth she finds her world turning upside-down. The infant cries like it's scared of something, or someone, and Emma's sleepless nights quickly drive a wedge between her and her husband, who seems uncharacteristically detached. When Emma begins to see strange things in the house, the line between reality and fantasy blurs and her grasp of what's real and what's not becomes even more clouded. Is something unnatural haunting the nursery? And what if it also affected her husband, who ventured up into the attic when they first arrived…
Celine Loup is an illustrator and Ignatz Award-nominated cartoonist who currently lives in France. She has done illustration work for The New York Times, The New Yorker, The A.V. Club, Variety, Lucky Peach, and Medium. Loup is the acclaimed creator of popular comics such as Honey and Mother, as well as her current ongoing series, Hestia. Her work has garnered an Ignatz Awards nomination, recognition on the Best American Comics "Notable Books" list, and acclaim from American Illustration, The Society of Illustrators, and CMYK.
In the press release, Loup had this to say about the book:
I wanted to tell a story about a fear that women dare not speak aloud, not even to themselves, often until after it's too late. Motherhood brings so much joy to the women who experience it, but for many it can feel like a prison, and no one can be certain until they've crossed a point of no return how it will be for them. Horror's greatest potential is the gift of empathy, and I hope THE MAN WHO CAME DOWN THE ATTIC STAIRS will create a space in which we can reach out to each other in times of personal crisis without fear of judgement.
While BOOM! Executive editor Sierra Hahn used the word "ooze" in sentence:
Celine's work oozes with emotion. With a single look her characters reveal their humanity or, perhaps in this case, lack thereof. Like the very best horror films, THE MAN WHO CAME DOWN THE ATTIC STAIRS conjures from its audience sincere empathy for its protagonist and a deep sense of unease for what lives within the shadows . . .
Look for The Man Who Came Down the Attic Stairs in comic shops September 18th and bookstores on September 24th.