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August 13, 2014


This Isn't A Library: New And Notable Releases Into 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.

*****

MAY141404 JIM HC $29.99
Jim Woodring is one of our greatest cartoonists, and these are some of his greatest comics. There are two or three potential top 25 all-time comics shorts in here.

APR140017 GUNS OF SHADOW VALLEY HC $24.99
An oversized hardcover of the group-funded western. We need more westerns. Well, I do, anyway.

imageMAY141580 JASON SHIGA DEMON #1 $4.95
Jason Shiga is one of those cartoonists where you worry after the entire ocean liner for the fact that he isn't a bigger star. He's a consistently interesting and amusing cartoonist with what one would guess is a lot of potential widespread appeal -- by which I mean is that I can't really track his fans, they come from all over the place. He certainly has moved smoothly from gig to gig, though; he's always working on something. This is the first of 21 planned issues.

APR140347 DAVE GIBBONS WATCHMEN ARTIFACT ED HC PI
I'm not sure what the deal is here with 144 pages -- meaning I'm not sure what's here -- but I love looking at this color-Xeroxed original art pages stuff, and Gibbons is one I want to see badly.

JUN140392 MY LITTLE PONY FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC #22 $3.99
MAY140489 MY LITTLE PONY TP VOL 03 RETURN OF HARMONY $7.99
I'm keeping my eye on you ponies, and your massive six-figure print runs.

MAY140728 SEX CRIMINALS #7 (MR) $3.50
MAY140738 THIEF OF THIEVES #23 (MR) $2.99
JUN140586 WALKING DEAD #130 (MR) $2.99
JUN140298 ASTRO CITY #14 $3.99
JUN148090 GRAYSON #1 2ND PTG $2.99
APR140015 LOBSTER JOHNSON GET LOBSTER #5 $3.99
JUN140013 ABE SAPIEN #15 $3.50
MAY140956 RACHEL RISING #27 $3.99
APR148208 STARLIGHT #5 CVR A EDWARDS (MR) $2.99
APR148209 STARLIGHT #5 CVR B LIEFELD (MR) $2.99
JUN140930 SPONGEBOB COMICS #35 $2.99
Hey, it's the serial comics. A new Sex Criminals should make a lot of retailers happy; that one has done extremely well in the shops, and I'm enjoying this second story so far. That the Robert Kirkman instigated caper series second; there's a confident pacing with that one, by which I mean it's not in a hurry. The Walking Dead is right at that moment in a new story arc where Kirkman -- fully in charge of this one writing-wise -- tends to accelerate the plot, so it wouldn't be a surprise to me to see a few holy shit tweets out there this time tomorrow. I am behind on my Astro City. The Grayson has done well; I thought the second issue was much better than this first one. Not one but two offerings make themselves known in the overlapping Mignola-verse series. I would not have guessed that Terry Moore is that far along with Rachel Rising; I would have that stack of comics at about ten issues lighter. Speaking of lighter than one would think, I guess Starlight concludes with next issue? That comic was prettily drawn, but felt really tossed together narrative-wise, with the only saving grace that it might develop into something more substantive. Finally, it seems as if Spongebob might become a perennial in comics completely divorced from the ubiquity of the show; as soon as I write something like that, books tend to get canceled.

imageAPR141286 THE PEOPLE INSIDE HC $24.99
This is a stand-alone, original graphic novel from Oni by Ray Fawkes. I'm not familiar with the work, but I remember his One Soul was Eisner-nominated and I'd definitely spend some time with it in the store.

JUN141297 MEGALEX HC $29.95
This is one of the Alejandro Jodorowsky projects about which even fans of that kind of material are only minorly enthused. He's working with Fred Beltran here. I swear this has been out before now, in some form or another.

FEB141355 SCOTT PILGRIM COLOR HC VOL 05 $24.99
These are attractive volumes, and an interesting choices in terms of getting this material back out there in front of fans. It's weird, it's the kind of work that's so broadly appealing that I actually know people that would like it but are only interested in reading it in color. So there you go. I think it's very effective this way, though.

JAN141243 SNAKEPIT 10 YEAR ANNVERSARY ED GN (MR) $14.95
I'm not exactly sure if this is older work or a bunch of work across a range of years; I think it's the stuff from early last decade. I find these comics tough to read at times, I think because of an assumed interest in some of the details that I don't share. It's a fascinating thing to do this kind of work for a really long time, like with this work and with even grander attempts like James Kochalka's. Unlike Richard Linklater and Boyhood, this kind of comic calls on almost constant focus. It's not a few weeks a year.

JUN141474 DON HECK A WORK OF ART HC $39.95
MAY141796 MARVEL COMICS COVER ART HC $50.00
I'm way behind on reading art books, and I can only dream of a world where I could routinely afford them, but these two Marvel-related one popped to me. The second might be interesting for the old-new push and pull. They had really good cover artists at several points in their long run. The first likely has a bunch of Marvel in it -- it's the company with which he was most closely aligned -- and is almost certainly more attractive than the artist's 1970s/1980s reputation.

MAY141545 LENA FINKLES MAGIC BARREL GN $17.00
I haven't seen this one yet, but I've had my eye out since encountering a few reviews, like this one by David Ulin. It seems like there are always one or two lengthy comics works per year anymore that slip out into the market without making an impression in the traditional comics world. The author is a novelist with a background in painting, so seeing the resulting work fascinates on that level no matter the quality of the work. I look forward to reading it.

*****

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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posted 1:25 am PST | Permalink
 

 
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