Good Comics Out June 22

It’s a long time yet to be thinking about autumn and Halloween, but I know my most-anticipated book this week, the Scary Godmother Comic Book Stories collection (Dark Horse, $24.99) will make a wonderful companion to last year’s Scary Godmother storybook collection. I have all the comics already, but they’re so much easier to reread conveniently this way. Plus, there’s a new color sketchbook section — and what a deal, for 300 pages of great reading at that price!

The new edition of Dreamland Japan: Writings on Modern Manga (Stone Bridge Press, $29.95) celebrates the 15th anniversary of its release. The industry has changed a lot since then, and a new forward and afterward put that gap into context. A book by Frederik Schodt is always worth reading.

In the “let’s point and laugh” category, Ziggy celebrates middle age with the hardcover Ziggy 40 Years 1971-2011 (Andrews McMeel, $24.99). Would probably make a great gift for your grandfather.

Also of some notoriety is the paperback version of Troublemaker (Dark Horse, $16.99), the Janet Evanovich series installment previously published as two hardcovers. Now that the whole story is under one cover at a reasonable price point, it’s a much better buy, but I suspect the unhappy novel readers may not return.

Most disturbing, though, is seeing six more Tokyopop books show up this week, two months after the company announced it was stopping publishing. Only one, Hanako and the Terror of Allegory Volume 4, is a conclusion; most head-scratching are the two debuts, Ghostface Volume 1 and Maid Shokun Volume 1. Zombie books walking!

On the positive manga side, I’m looking forward to another thrilling installment of Naoki Urasawa’s 20th Century Boys with Volume 15 (Viz, $12.99).

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