Alphabetical Index of Other Publishers

Book Love

I wasn’t familiar with the work of Debbie Tung until I read and enjoyed Quiet Girl in a Noisy World: An Introvert’s Story. Next week she has a followup coming out. Book Love is what it sounds like, a collection of cartoons for those who love reading. The single-page strips aren’t particularly punchline-driven — the appeal comes from the familiarity. Anyone whose favorite activity is enjoying a good book or anyone who always has trouble figuring out what book to […]

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Wild Ocean: Sharks, Whales, Rays, and Other Endangered Sea Creatures

The Wild Ocean anthology, edited by Matt Dembicki, was produced with PangeaSeed, an ocean conservation organization, so it’s got an obvious message — ”to showcase 12 iconic endangered ocean animals” in order to encourage changes in human behavior when it comes to pollution and overfishing — but the following 12 stories are inspiring, all the same. “Tortuga, the Island That Swims” by Jay Hosler, about a hawksbill sea turtle’s life cycle and the other creatures that live on its shell […]

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Jim McClain’s Solution Squad

Jim McClain, a middle school math teacher, loves comics, so he made his own super-team to teach mathematical concepts. The first Solution Squad comic story introduces the team members: La Calculadora – fast computation and team leader Absolutia – changes temperature to demonstrate absolute value Equality – duplicates the abilities of others The Ordered Pair twins – Abscissa (runs fast horizontally) and Ordinate (flies and dives vertically) Radical – a time-lost kid from the 80s who surfs invisible triangles They […]

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The Little Bookshop Between

Luke Finch emailed me out of the blue to send me a copy of his comic The Little Bookshop Between. I wasn’t sure it sounded like my kind of story, but I loved it. It could be called horror, but it’s very much about hints and attitude, not gore or conventional scares, and there’s a surprising note of optimism under it all. An author coming from being told he needs to write more commercial, escapist work settles down at his […]

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Zen Pencils: Inspirational Quotes for Kids

The quotes in Zen Pencils: Inspirational Quotes for Kids by Gavin Aung Than are oddly chosen. The second is about training to avoid bleeding in battle, attributed to an Armed Forces motto, a strange choice to lead off a book of advice for youngsters. The meanings of several are still argued over by adults, so the “inspirational” nature is questionable. And several are mini-essays, trying the patience of a younger reader trying to understand the point. While a few of […]

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The Beatles Story

It’s an amazing period we live in, one where great comics from all eras are reprinted in book format and much more easily available than they used to be. The flip side of that boom in collected format is that a lot of publishers are sweeping the corners of the archives to find anything that might reach an audience. The Beatles Story feels like a cash-in, but that may be a side effect of how work from an earlier era […]

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Dash #5 — Return of the Gay Detective

After a three-year hiatus, I was curious to see how this supernatural noir mystery picked up. Smartly, writer Dave Ebersole begins the issue with a “story so far” section that fits nicely into the hardboiled PI’s tendency to monologue, in keeping with the genre, while bringing the forgetful reader up to speed with the current case. After a reminder that Dash was drummed off the police force for being gay, there’s a resurrected Egyptian mummy to stop and a mystical […]

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All the Answers

Michael Kupperman, better known for his satiric cartoons, here tries his hand at graphic biography. All the Answers is about his father’s time as a child star. His dad was Quiz Kid Joel Kupperman. During World War II, there was a radio show starring young geniuses. Joel was the youngest, a math prodigy pushed into fame by a stereotypical stage mother regardless of his personality or wants. As Michael tells it, his father hated it but felt he had to […]

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