Colonial Comics: New England, 1750-1775

Colonial Comics: New England, 1750-1775 is an anthology of 18 historical comic stories, edited by Jason Rodriguez and published by Fulcrum Publishing, that aims “to focus on the people and events that tend to get ignored in American history classes.” It’s an admirable goal, and one that succeeds, opening readers’ eyes to lesser-known but involving figures and events. Stories such as “The Devil and Silence Dogood”, by J.L. Bell and Braden Lamb, humorously shows Benjamin Franklin’s early days as a […]

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Doctor Who: The Seventh Doctor #3

I don’t normally bother reviewing wrap-up issues for miniseries, but this one deserves a few notes for doing things well in unusual fashion. “Operation Volcano” began in Doctor Who: The Seventh Doctor #1, written by Andrew Cartmel and illustrated by Christopher Jones. It involves the discovery of a spaceship in the Australian Outback, a conspiracy group, alien “snakes” that possess people, and other touches that bring home the 60s time setting. Although the Doctor (the Seventh, obviously, originally played by […]

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Fence #8

The first volume of Fence is now widely available, so it seemed like a good time to check in with the continuing series. As created by C.S. Pacat and Johanna the Mad, it’s the story of a group of boys on an elite high school fencing team. Nicholas has talent but not enough training and not the right family background. Seiji has all the advantages and is inhumanly talented. They’re roommates. The last few issues have focused on various showdowns […]

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Bolivar

It seems lately that there’s been a mini-boom in books about how great New York City is. For the adults, there’s Roz Chast’s Going Into Town: A Love Letter to New York and Julia Wertz’s Tenements, Towers & Trash: An Unconventional Illustrated History of New York City; for the kids, there’s the TOON book Lost in NYC: A Subway Adventure and now Sean Rubin’s Bolivar. Only this one has a dinosaur! Bolivar is an eight-foot-tall grey dinosaur living in New […]

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Goldie Vance Volume 4

Goldie Vance volume 4 marks a few turning points in the retro-flavored series about a teen detective. This is the first volume to not be previously serialized, and it’s the first not written by series co-creator Hope Larson (although she gets a story credit). It’s also not drawn by original artist and co-creator Brittney Williams (who does provide the cover), but volume 3 was drawn by someone else as well. Volume 4 is written by Jackie Ball (who co-wrote volume […]

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Manfried the Man

Manfried the Man by Caitlin Major and Kelly Bastow features a simple concept. Humanoid cats have little men for pets. It started, as you might expect, as a gag comic. It’s adorable seeing the roly-poly balding ginger Manfried get tied up in his leash, for example, and realistic that he always wants to be on the other side of a door. (Note that, as the pet men are naked, there are tiny little cartoon private parts visible, but they’re incredibly […]

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Toon Books for September: 3×4, We Are All Me

Ivan Brunetti’s Wordplay was a cute exploration of language; his followup counting book, 3×4, plays with numbers. The teacher asks the class to draw 12 things in sets, so the kids think about groups of cars, shapes, food, and other objects. It’s creative and playful, with plenty of detail to look at and count, making for fun reading and re-reading. There are so many different ways to make a dozen, and so many interests these kids have! A wonderful book […]

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Science Comics: Solar System: Our Place in Space

A rare misfire for the Science Comics series, Science Comics: Solar System: Our Place in Space goes past educational to sound patronizing. For a book aimed at ages 9-13, the tone is too “kiddy”, and the lessons are presented too blatantly. As written by Rosemary Mosco and illustrated by Jon Chad (who previously authored Science Comics: Volcanoes), it just doesn’t live up to the high standards set by the other books in the line, which are both informative and entertaining. […]

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