- Posted by Johanna on July 7, 2006 at 8:30 am
- Category: Shopping Guide
Dark Horse has done some nice horror-themed anthologies with impressive creative lineups — The Dark Horse Books of Haunting, Witchcraft, and The Dead. The fourth volume is offered here, The Dark Horse Book of Monsters. Just in time for Halloween, right? Wrong. It’s on sale November 22. Way to miss an opportunity. Or maybe they’re relying on people assuming that something ordered in July will certainly arrive by October — but remember, this is Dark Horse.
Harlan Ellison’s Dream Corridor Volume 2 (JUL06 0023, $19.95) is due the same day, with contributions from Eric Shanower, Mark Waid, Gene Ha, Steve Rude, Richard Corben, Gene Colan, and more, including, I quote, “the very last work ever by Superman artist Curt Swan”. And the book only took ten years! (Does this mean The Last Dangerous Visions is right around the corner?) I fondly remember this anthology series from when I got seriously back into comics; now I just have to find the previous issues to remind myself of how good it was.
I’m glad to see the True Story, Swear to God series relaunch at Image with a #1 (JUL06 1674, $2.99), because Tom Beland seems to really want to do a series and is happy to be at that publisher, who will handle lots of the business details for him… but I have to wonder how well it’s going to do with their core audience. I’m probably wrong to be looking for things to worry about; I should just call this another sign of how Image aims to diversify.
Jim Dougan writes and Danielle Corsetto draws Crazy Papers (Chatterbox Comix, JUL06 3013, $6.50). It’s a brief little graphic novel about what happens when a free-spirited friend comes to town and hooks up with entirely the wrong guy. I’ve enjoyed Corsetto’s artwork on her webcomic Girls With Slingshots, so it’s a pleasure to see her first print comic. She does a great job with borderline-crazy women, and also with the normal one. (I wanted to see a lot more of her, but she works best as the background anchor.) Some of the scenes are clever, but overall, I didn’t find the entire story as compelling as I’d hoped, probably because I don’t know or understand people that act that drunk or impulsively. In his back cover quote, Dean Haspiel compares the book to Sex in the City, which seems accurate enough.
I just read a preview copy of DMP’s Day of Revolution (JUL06 3098, $12.95), and while I wouldn’t recommend it, I was impressed by how commercially clever the creator seemed: she’s come up with a story that combines yaoi (boy/boy love), yuri (girl/girl love), AND shôjo romantic comedy. Boy Kei finds out he’s a hermaphrodite and decides to become the girl he should be, which causes both his old guy friends and his new girl “trainer” to hit on him. I think I would have liked it better if it had been a lot longer than a two-book series; as it is, it doesn’t seem like it has enough space to do much of anything (although the artist made space for two near-date-rape scenes, one more serious than the other).
I’m not going to preorder the Popeye reprint (Fantagraphics, JUL06 3133, $29.95) for two reasons. I want to look through it to see how much I’ll enjoy reading it — I acknowledge the artistry, but that doesn’t mean I need to own it — and Amazon has been having some good deals on these kinds of books if one is patient enough to wait a few months. I am always tickled by Popeye’s introduction, though: “Are you a sailor?” he’s asked, to which he responds, “Ja think I’m a cowboy?”
First Second releases their Fall line with another group of diverse and unusual stories with an emphasis on history and distinct location. I’m embarrassed to say that I still haven’t read any of their first bunch, but I’m confident enough in their quality to point them out to you.
What’s wrong with Diamond, exhibit #2983417: In order to order the paperback edition of The Baby-Sitters Club from Graphix (JUL06 3182, $8.99), which is highly recommended, I have to find it nestled among a variant cover of busty, half-naked Bloodrayne and a whole line of something called Prohibited that features even more naked women touching themselves.
Since I was speaking of classic strip reprints a few paragraphs ago, I must point out a new printing of the classic Little Nemo in Slumberland (Taschen, JUL06 3427, $29.99). Over 400 pages of comic history for $30 means an excellent deal!
Dramacon Book 2 (Tokyopop, JUL06 3440, $9.99) is out! Happy happy happy! It’s a great romantic comedy with a unique setting, and lots of fun to read.
Be sure not to miss Scott McCloud’s latest manifesto, Making Comics (JUL06 3708, $22.95) back in the Books section. There are few enough useful educational works on comic craft, not to mention that anything by the author of Understanding Comics is a must-buy.