If you grew up obsessing over MYSTERY HUNTERS and urban legend documentaries, then FOLKTALES OF THE CRYPTIDS is the Kickstarter for you. This graphic novel is a collection of four short stories by eight fantastic artists. Each tale centers on a different cryptid, a creature not of this world. But this isn’t THE SHAPE OF WATER. These chilling stories share the darker side of folklore and why we may not want to uncover what lies in the shadows.

Cryptids: Fact or Fiction?

FOLKTALES OF THE CRYPTIDS is a product of AfterLight Comics, a UK based comics publisher. Though Joseph Oliveira is the writer for all four stories, he is joined by eight artists and colorists. There’s Adrian Manuel Garcia, Brendan Purchase, Bethany Varni, Francesco Iaquinta, Roman Stevens, Shindy Reehal, Dominic Racho, and Vukasin Ivkovic. With a team of this size, there’s sure to be a lot of lovely variation throughout the graphic novel.

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These cryptid tales range from the Chupacabra to the Mothman. The remaining two are a mystery for now, but I’m sure they’ve chosen some great candidates. And for those who aren’t as obsessed with these creatures, there’s a helpful index in the back. Little touches like this really pull a book together. This extra also reminds me of the field books I enjoyed as a kid.

folktales of the cryptids
Image courtesy of AfterLight Comics.

From what I’ve seen so far, this collection looks amazing! Each story has its own unique look and artistic style, really highlighting the different creators. The short story format also serves as a great sampler size for enthusiasts and newcomers alike.

Image courtesy of AfterLight Comics.

Patron Rewards

I’ve seen a lot of great Kickstarter tiers, but FOLKTALES OF THE CRYPTIDS has some special gems. Of course you can get the physical copy and a digital copy, but the team also produced an audio book! I’ve never seen this for a graphic novel, so it’s a cool touch that can plunge you right into the experience. This feature comes in around the $25 pledge. But even less expensive tiers ($4-$17) will get you the digital or physical edition along with posters, concept art, and more AfterLight titles.

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Moving up the ladder, $35 includes a signed physical copy of FOLKTALES OF THE CRYPTIDS and a sweet t-shirt. $50 will get you the signed AfterLight comics bundle along with the audiobook. But if you’re really looking for the ultimate backer experience, $88 includes every physical reward.

Image courtesy of AfterLight Comics.

So how much does AfterLight need to push the project forward, you ask? The team has a $4,278 goal, which means, as I’m typing, they need less than a $1,000 to meet their goal. With a week to go, this is definitely doable, but they need awesome backers like you to pitch in! And just so you can get a taste of what you’re supporting, the Kickstarter page links you to one of the tales. You can check it out here! The pledge rewards are great and the stories look creepy. And who doesn’t love supporting independent small publishers? Oliveira has run three Kickstarter campaigns in the past so I definitely trust his experience. Oh, and did I mention the packages come with wax seals?

Support the FOLKTALES OF THE CRYPTIDS Kickstarter here by March 15!

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