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January 30, 2013


This Isn't A Library: Notable Releases To The Comics Direct Market

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Here are the books that make an impression on me staring at this week's no-doubt largely accurate list of books shipping from Diamond Comic Distributors, Inc. to comic book and hobby shops across North America.

I might not buy all of the works listed here. I might not buy any. You never know. I'd sure look at the following, though.

*****

OCT121059 FREDDIE STORIES HC (MR) $19.95
The great thing about comics is that you can imagine all sorts of satisfying relationships people might have with the art form. One we rarely consider is the set-up where someone buys two or three books a year and it totally happy with what they great. This substantial work form Lynda Barry works on that level. It also is a must have for those of us that power through hundreds of pages a week. I saw the actual book of this; it's super-handsome.

imageSEP121118 MARBLES MANIA DEPRESSION MICHELANGELO & ME GRAPHIC MEMOIR $20.00
My Mom is reading this right now, and I imagine it might be of interest to a lot of folks given the general attention paid to mental health issues in terms of lifestyle right now. I couldn't be happier for Ellen Forney to have a work out to which a bunch of folks are paying attention.

NOV128168 HELLBOY IN HELL #1 MIGNOLA CVR (2ND PTG) $2.99
DEC120158 BEFORE WATCHMEN DOLLAR BILL #1 (MR) $3.99
NOV120153 BEFORE WATCHMEN OZYMANDIAS #5 (MR) $3.99
NOV120199 BATMAN AND ROBIN ANNUAL #1 $4.99
NOV120433 INVINCIBLE #100 CHROMIUM ED $9.99
NOV128015 HAWKEYE #5 2ND PTG AJA VAR $2.99
NOV120725 HAWKEYE #7 $2.99
Not a ton of stuff jumped out at me from the superhero/genre-adventure pamphlet part of the store. The Mignola is a second printing, but I'm glad for it because I sort of try to catch up with Mignola in big serial-comic gulps so I want that one on the stands. The Before Watchmen material I doubt a ton of you are buying, but this pair of comics certainly counts as first-rate artistic talent working on these book. The Dollar Bill in particular is very, very Steve Rude -- there are are even those weird kind of cartoon-type characters that he does, the bankers that hire the corporate-spokesman superhero. There also a scene were the superhero tosses a dude from his pants during a fight that isn't even a big moment. Invincible #100 is kind of a step-back from that title's usual super-heavy dramatics, although there are both plot developments (the comic's final reveal) and early thematic inquiries (how much the world lets you do things when you're of use to those in power) of significance, I suppose. The Batman and Robin confuses me because I have no idea why DC is doing annuals when their stated goal is to strengthen the line of serial comics book to book for this initial, extended launch period. The story in this one, though, would have made a pretty good stand-alone comic book issue; some of the other annuals I've read have been confusing and sort of dire. The seventh issue of the Hawkeye book is the one that benefits Sandy-related charities. I think that's a good thing, and I've enjoyed that comic book when I've read it.

OCT120441 X-9 SECRET AGENT CORRIGAN HC VOL 05 $49.99
JUL121070 PRINCE VALIANT HC VOL 06 1947-1948 $35.00
The Corrigan has to be beautiful and having just read the Foster, I know that one is. Another way you could be engaging with the comics form right now is just buying old strip collection. That's something I could see myself doing. It's not like there are a lot of stinkers getting the $35-$50 treatment.

NOV120729 SILVER SURFER BY STAN LEE AND MOEBIUS #1 $7.99
NOV120782 X-WOMEN TP $24.99
Marvel comics featuring work by Moebius (I'll leave it to you to guess which one) and Milo Manara (I think).

NOV120827 CALVIN & HOBBES ATTACK OF SNOW GOONS NEW PTG $12.99
I'm really glad these stay in print given that there's a complete hardcover slipcase.

JUN121091 CAVE-IN GN $14.95
Brian Ralph's fun, textured piece gets a new edition and hopefully one that sticks around for a while. This could be a pretty big next couple of years for the Fort Thunder alum and comics educator. I'm a fan and want them all.

DEC121206 CHRIS WARE BUILDING STORIES HC (JUL121170) $50.00
I hear it's been difficult for comic shops to find copies of this to sell, given the demands of bookstores and on-line booksellers here. I would assume that this book's appearance on this list means that's not as big of an issue. I would love for comic shops to sell these the way I've seen such stores sell the Artist's Editions, but I'm not sure in a lot of cases if there's much of an interest in what Chris Ware does just in terms of content.

OCT121333 JACK KIRBY COLLECTOR #60 $10.95
Hey, I haven't seen one of these in a while, so I'd certainly pick one up were I in a comic book store today. Man, stores are great for random encounters like that. Also: sixty issues. Woof.

NOV121316 DEAR BELOVED STRANGER GN $19.95
While stumbling across old friends can be nice, the real reason we leave home even if it's just going to the funnybook shop is to meet new people. This is a Top Shelf-distributed Xeric winner -- of which there can't be a whole lot left -- and the preview page looks compelling enough with art like the image below I'd really love it if my day included holding one in my hands. It won't, but if you're near a great shop, yours might.

*****

The full list of this week's releases, including some titles with multiple cover variations and a long, impressive list of toys and other stuff that isn't comics, can be found here. Despite this official list there's no guarantee a comic will show up in the stores as promised, or in all of the stores as opposed to just a few. Also, stores choose what they carry and don't carry so your shop may not carry a specific publication. There are a lot of comics out there.

To find your local comic book store, check this list; and for one I can personally recommend because I've shopped there, albeit a while back, try this.

The above titles are listed with their Diamond order code in the first field, which may assist you in finding comics at your shop or having them order something for you they don't have in-stock. Ordering through a direct market shop can be a frustrating experience, so if you have a direct line to something -- you know another shop has it, you know a bookstore has it -- I'd urge you to consider all of your options.

If I failed to list your comic, that's because I hate you.

*****

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*****
*****
 
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