Max & the Midknights

Lincoln Peirce, the author of Big Nate, takes us to a fantasy land in a sword-and-sorcery tale with kid protagonists, told in the popular mixed-media format of short text sections interspersed with comics, in Max & the Midknights. Max is voyaging with Uncle Budrick, a struggling troubadour. As an apprentice, Max is supposed to become a traveling entertainer, just because of family expectations. However, Max is more practical, smarter, courageous, and very competent, which makes her (yes, her) the perfect […]

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Lytton #1

After I wrote about Cutaway Comics last year, they got in touch to see if I wanted to check out their comics. Of course, I said yes, so they sent some digital copies to review. As I mentioned previously, Lytton was a mercenary who appeared in the 5th Doctor story “Resurrection of the Daleks” (Tegan’s last episode) and the 6th Doctor story “Attack of the Cybermen”. Lytton #1 (written by former Doctor Who script editor Eric Saward, art by Barry […]

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A Curious Collection of Dates: Through the Year With Sherlock Holmes

I’ve greatly enjoyed reading A Curious Collection of Dates: Through the Year With Sherlock Holmes, one day at a time. It’s an almanac, where every day of the year has one or more entries related to Sherlock Holmes. Some are capsule biographies of people who’ve played Holmes, or John Watson, or a Moriarty, noted on their birthdays. Or those who were significant to the publishing of the Canon. Some are dates from the Arthur Conan Doyle stories when cases began […]

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Femme Friday: Celebrating the Women in the Sherlock Holmes Canon and Transformative Works

The Baker Street Babes, a group of women who are Sherlock Holmes fans, put out this short essay collection in 2017, the last year the BBC Sherlock TV show aired. It’s a terrific idea. Typical of his time, Arthur Conan Doyle didn’t always pay a lot of attention to the women in his Sherlock Holmes stories. Of course, there’s Irene Adler, who’s been given too much attention over the years. The first essay here is about her, and it smartly […]

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No In-Person SPX This Year

I’m disappointed to once again miss gathering in Bethesda, but I appreciate an organization that wants to protect its attendees and guests. The Small Press Expo organizers have announced that “SPX 2021 will be held virtually” for health and safety reasons. With only four months to go until the show, it’s a cautious, sensible decision. The pandemic isn’t over yet, particularly given how many people are refusing to make the smart, scientific choice of getting vaccinated. I suspect they would […]

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Go With the Flow

Go With the Flow marks just how prevalent female readers and authors have become in comics. As one of the characters says, “Fifty percent of the population gets a period… but it’s like this HUGE secret we can’t talk about?” This book would not have existed several years ago. As it is, it’s a good starting point. It’s a lengthy book, over 300 pages, because the authors touch, if only briefly, on a wide variety of related subjects. (I believe […]

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A Man and His Cat Volume 3

It’s around this time in a manga series with a relatively simple premise — a widower who’s tired of life finds comfort in an older cat that no one else wanted and enjoys the basics of having a pet — that I start wondering how the author is going to keep it going with descending into mere repetition. In A Man and His Cat volume 3, Umi Sakurai tells some longer stories about pet ownership as well as delving much […]

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Charlie Milverton and Other Sherlock Holmes Stories

If you’d like to read five classic Arthur Conan Doyle mystery stories, modernized in tawdry, tabloid fashion, Charlie Milverton and Other Sherlock Holmes Stories by Charlotte Anne Walters is the book for you. For me, it was an excellent piece of evidence that putting a present-day Holmes story in print doesn’t automatically make it better than the free fic you can read on AO3. In fact, I would have enjoyed this more online, as there I would have been more […]

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