Another wonderful week, but monthly single issues be slipping! Mostly collections and graphic novels this week, but for good reason!
By MENACHEM LUCHINS, owner, Escape Pod Comics, Huntington, L.I.
For kids we’ve got Benjamin Bear in Brain Storms by Toon Books. Like many of the wonderful books Toon is putting out, this one is from France by the bestselling author Philippe Coudray and features the titular bear in all sorts of fun and silly adventures.
Papercutz, meanwhile, offers up a deliciously wicked series with Lunch Witch Vol. 1. Grunhilda comes from a long line of witches, but loves cooking above all. What better job for her is there than a school lunch lady, right?
Toon Books, on the other hand, won’t stop at ONE release — we also have We Dig Worms — a book for young readers that teaches the science and facts about those crawly little things that so fascinate children — and Yvan Pommaux’s next book that teaches classical myths and legends, Orpheus in the Underworld.
But it’s not only “kids’ books” publishers in this game: Fantagraphics Books offers up this delightful all-age book, The Kurdles, about a lost teddy bear trying to find his way home who stumbles into Kurdleton, the home of a most interesting group of characters — a home that’s just grown hair, eyes, and a mouth!
But let’s not forget grown-ups, right? Marvel has the second volume of Blackman and Del Mundo’s Elektra out this week! Everyone’s favorite assassin was put through the wringer in Vol. 1, but now Bullseye is back and Elektra has to face her greatest enemy — who’s more powerful than ever. A fun read but what makes the book truly shine is Del Mundo’s stunning art. If you’ve been passing on this series because it’s not Miller and Sienkiewicz, you are forgiven, but you’re also wrong. GET IT.
Speaking of amazing art, I’d be remiss if I didn’t point out that IDW has collected Secret Agent X-9, the comic strip started by Dashiell Hammett and the great Alex Raymond! The book collects almost three years of the series, going beyond Hammett’s work, and including The Saint author Leslie Charteris‘ writing as well!
Headspace by IDW looks to be a wonderful little suspense thriller. Its premise: What if your whole town was really just the mental construct of a crazed killer? How much fun does that sound, right?
In a similar but much more… challenging… vein, Alternative Comics has collected Steve Aylett’s Johnny Viable comics. Originally found in Alan Moore’s Dodgem Logic, this series of comics, pictures and meditations on life might make you question whether your whole life is just a construct in someone else’s mind!
Stjepan Sejic’s Sunstone (Image) has its second volume coming out. Often compared to Strangers in Paradise, this BDSM love story is one of the funniest and most heartwarming romances out there. Remastered from Sejic’s DeviantArt webcomic, the first volume of this book sold like hotcakes and there’s no reason to think Vol. 2 won’t fly off the shelves as well. As it should be!
And, there’s still a new #1 for everyone: Kurtis Wiebe (of Peter Panzerfaust and Rat Queens fame) teams up with Johnnie Christmas (of Sheltered) for Pisces #1, a period piece about a Vietnam vet recruited for a space mission. Not just outer space but first contact with an alien race!