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  • Writer's pictureTrusty Henchman

New & Upcoming Comics Spotlight: Misc

Hmmm. This really is just the 'smells like Fantagraphics' section, isn't it? Except this time it just is all Fantagraphics....



(W) Daniel Clowes (A/CA) Daniel Clowes

This long-awaited new graphic novel from Daniel Clowes ( Ghost World and Patience ) is a genre-bending thriller from one of the most assured storytellers of all time.

Monica is a series of interconnected narratives that collectively tell the life story — actually, stories — of its title character. Clowes calls upon a lifetime of inspiration to create the most complex and per - sonal graphic novel of his distinguished career. Rich with visual detail, an impeccable ear for language and dialogue, and thrilling twists, Monica is a multilayered masterpiece in comics form that alludes to many of the genres that have defined the medium — war, romance, horror, crime, the supernatural, etc. — but in a mysterious, uncategorizable, and quintessentially Clowesian way that rewards multiple readings.

Five years in the making, Monica marks the apex of creativity from one of the defining voices of the graphic novel boom over the past quarter-century. A new book from Clowes is always a huge event in comics and literary circles; Monica will be the biggest literary event of 2023.


Why this caught my eye:

Kinda hard not to highlight a new Clowes project...



(W) Laura Perez (A/CA) Laura Perez

Blurring the lines between the real and the spiritual, Spanish cartoonist Laura Pérez leads the reader through a dreamy journey from the Arizona desert to the land of the dead.

Two young women road trip through the Arizona desert in search of a spiritual awakening. Crowds gather to see the village wise woman commune with the dead. Strange bright lights flash across the night sky, provoking all manner of interpretations. A mosaic of experiences, Totem offers tantalizing glimpses of characters on their own journeys connected by some ethereal thread. The narrative slips through time and space, delicately drifting from reality to different states of consciousness. Like a vivid dream, this story is rendered through eerie settings and potent symbols, a spiritual puzzle inviting the reader to piece together.


Why this caught my eye:

Check out Perez's art here.



(W) Mike McCarthy (A/CA) Mike McCarthy

In 1995 Something Weird Video released filmmaker John Michael McCarthy's Elvis-obsessed auto-bio bump and grind cinematic oddity TEENAGE TUPELO, co-produced by exploitation king David F. Friedman. Memphis instrumental combo Impala provided the scintillating score set to the swaying rhythms of starlet D'Lana Tunnell, produced by legendary Sun records-era Roland Janes and released on Sympathy for the Record Industry. Now Fantagraphics Books unleashes this mammoth coffee table volume: a nudie cutie time capsule of art, essays, and reviews, along with photos of the beautiful starlets who appeared in the movie.


Why this caught my eye:

Anytime Something Weird Video pops up on my radar it just triggers memories of when we ordered and stocked from them since they were a Seattle local company. Hey, it was the best way to get copies of Roger Corman's Fantastic Four and that weird unreleased live action Justice League back in the day.



(W) John Kenn Mortensen, Benni Bodker

A tongue-in-cheek guide to the beasts to watch out for during a cozy Christmastime.

In the wintry season, when we all delight in joyful thoughts of family, presents, and sugarplums, we mustn’t forget that the night is dark and full of terrors. Thankfully, bold adventurers Benni Bodker and John Kenn Mortensen have journeyed far and wide to comb through ancient tomes, listen to folk tales, and spy upon loathsome lairs to catalog the most frightful creatures of the netherworld that appear around Christmastime.

A Christmas Bestiary is an essential guidebook to all the horrors that await us during the darkest time of the year, from common creatures such as Baba Yaga and the Krampus to the less encountered (but quite deadly) Yule Wight and Gryla. Bodker’s brief text entries include the lore and background of each creature, plus handy info such as danger level that will help you survive (but no guarantees!). Mortensen’s gothic, pen-and-ink renderings bring these bone-chilling beasts to life on the page. Eerie, playful, and practical, A Christmas Bestiary is the perfect collection for the ones who love —or fear— the things that go bump in the night.


Why this caught my eye:

If you've never checked out Mortensen's work do yourself a favor and take a quick look here.



(W) Joe Maneely (A/CA) Joe Maneely

The Atlas Artist Edition: Joe Maneely: Volume 1 collects the best work of Marvel’s top artist of the 1950s in a lush, lavish, full-color, oversize collector’s volume, scanned directly from the original printings and meticulously restored and presented in a wealth of detail never seen before.

Joe Maneely was known for his draftsmanship, his versatility, and his speed. He could draw horror, science fiction, war, crime, Mad-style humor, Westerns, and funny animals with equal dexterity. His tactile, chiaroscuro graphic approach to storytelling has made him a legend among the comics cognoscenti, but because he never drew superheroes and his life ended tragically at age 32, he has never been given the attention his short but incandescent career deserves. Until now.

As Geoffrey C. Ward wrote in American Heritage, “Maneely’s knowledge of 19th century artifacts was encyclopedic, his rumpled, unshaven cowboys all wore the right hats, swung the right lariats, sat in the right saddles, fired the right model Colts — with every screwhead and trigger guard and notched handle precisely rendered.”

And that’s only his Westerns. That tightly focused attention to detail pervades his work in every genre. The Atlas Artist Edition Vol. 1: Joe Maneely presents a cornucopia of Maneely’s work for Marvel (then called Atlas) including Westerns (Kid Colt, Black Rider, Ringo Kid, Wyatt Earp, Two-Gun Kid), pre-code horror (“Haunted!”, “The Raving Maniac”, and the classic “Your Name Is Frankenstein”), space opera (Speed Carter), war (Combat Kelly), Mad-style parodies from the pages of Crazy and Riot, cold-war intrigue and paranoia (Yellow Claw), and Maneely’s pride and joy — his Arthurian champion, The Black Knight. Series editor Dr. Michael J. Vassallo provides expert contextual and historical commentary in a special essay for this volume. SEP231701

Why this caught my eye:

So while the dimensions are smaller (9.75x13.5 vs the 14.4 x19.6 of an IDW Artist Edition), the $75 feels like a steal for the 256 pages of content. Also, there's just some nice looking art in here.


That's it for this batch, we'll check out some all-ages and YA books on the next round!

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