HOT PICKS: On Sale This Week!

Hey, Batgirl #35 is coming out, didja hear? Also: Sabrina! Klarion! Blacksad! ElfQuest!

Christy Blanch, Alter Ego Comics, Muncie, Ind.

Sabrina #1, Archie. After reading Afterlife With Archie, I am sold on anything that Archie puts out horror wise. I think this series is going to be a huge hit with all of our customers. Just so excited for this book!!


Fraggle Rock #1, Boom! I have been anxiously awaiting this book and there is so much talk about Fraggle Rock right now at our store that SO many people are anxiously awaiting it. I was the right age for Fraggle Rock and I love Kate Leth, so this is a must-read for me!

Klarion #1, DC. All I need to know for this is Annie Nocenti. I love anything she writes and mix in a witch story, WOOT! And again, Annie Nocenti. She’s simply amazing.

Punks: The Comic #1, Image. While I’m on books I will read by certain authors, Josh Fialkov is one of those authors. Plus, I was sold on just the cover alone.

Aimee LoSecco, JHU Comic Books, Manhattan

So much awesome, so little space. … First the old, then the new. Howsabout that?

ElfQuest Original Quest Gallery Edition, Dark Horse. In the style of the IDW Artist Editions, Dark Horse gives us the first five issues of Richard and Wendy Pini’s original quest, faithfully reproduced from Wendy’s magical penwork. This is going with the Sergio Aragones Groo edition in my collection.  Then they can do a Groo/ElfQuest crossover and you can bury me in the boxes they ship these things in.


Jim Henson’s Tale of Sand Boxed Set, Boom! Studios. Henson fans are getting their fill this year, lemme tell ya! If you loved Tale of Sand (or couldn’t get your hands on a copy while it was out of print), then this is for you. It’s a slipcased edition of the Tale of Sand graphic novel, and the actual script it was based on. Perfect for filmmakers, screenwriters, and creators wanting to adapt original works for comics. (Hint: makes an awesome holiday gift, and the sooner you get your shopping out of the way …)


Blacksad: Amarillo, Dark Horse. YES.  BLACKSAD. It’s been a long time coming. Translated in English for the first time by Katie LaBarbera and Neal Adams (yes, that Neal!) this Eisner and Harvey winner brings us John Blacksad on a side job driving a yellow Caddy Eldorado through the southwest. And knowing the way of things, it’s gonna be a bumpy ride! Just pick it up, you’ve been waiting for your badass noir fix.

Battling Boy: Rise of Aurora West, :01 First Second. Baby Button Eyes, we’ve been anticipating this book! The follow-up to the first Battling Boy, this installment is actually a prequel focusing on Aurora, daughter of Haggard West. You remember him from the vast Paul Pope-i-verse. Perfect all-ages book, especially for that tween that is impossible to buy for. However, having said that, I sell more parents on the book when I explain the premise to kids. It’s just that good. Read it before you give it to your nieces and nephews.

Ted Alexander, manager, Midtown Comics’ Downtown location, Manhattan

Wytches #1, Image. The last time we got a horror book from Scott Snyder it was a book called Severed that he did with his pal Scott Tuft. Now he’s all alone with his own horror book called Wytches. From what I’ve heard it’s going to be pretty creepy.  Just in time for October and Halloween!


Sabrina #1, Archie Comics. In keeping with the creepy October and Halloween vibe, I’ve got to pick Sabrina. Sabrina is written by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, the writer of Afterlife With Archie. If it is even half as scary as Afterlife, then this will be a winner for sure.

V-Wars Vol. 1: Crimson Queen TP, IDW. The third horror-themed book has got to be V-Wars. At $9.99 this is a great steal. I’ve read almost everything by Jonathan Mayberry and he crafts horror stories that are really scary, because he makes them plausible. Everything he suggests could actually happen.

Menachem Luchins, owner, Escape Pod Comics, Huntington, L.I. 

Batgirl #35 will be available ONE DAY early (Tuesday!) at Escape Pod Comics, ONLY during our Gotham Academy signing with Becky Cloonan, Karl Kerschl and Gotham Academy/Batgirl co-writer Brenden Fletcher. Details here.

Besides Batgirl, we’ve got LOADS of awesome stuff this week; Hawkeye Vol. 3 finally hits, the third East of West trade as well, Steve Niles’ October Faction, Axis, Fraggle Rock’s return, Joe Sacco doing satire in BUMF, the CBLDF Liberty Annual, the new super-creepy Sabrina, Snyder & Jock’s Wytches, Ennis’ War Stories, Kate Leth’s Edward Scissorhands … So so much!!!


So here’s the stuff I pulled out, the creme de la creme, as it were:

Blacksad: Amarillo, Dark Horse. The third volume in this Eisner Award-winning series that mixes anthropomorphic animals and sexy, dangerous noir is here. Following the intense events of A Silent Hell, Blacksad has landed a fairly simple job of driving a rich man’s car across the country. A dark road trip set in a land very similar to America in the ’50s, I’m sure this tale has enough twists and turns to keep you holding on for the whole ride!

Miss Don’t Touch Me Omnibus, NBM. Paris in the ’30s is rendered stunningly by Hubert and Kerascoet! Blanche fears the Butcher of Dances, a murderer on the prowl for loose women, but she’s safe working as a maid for her dear sister Agatha. Until Agatha ends up dead. The police rule it suicide but Blanche knows it was the Butcher. Now she’s on the hunt for the hunter in the most immoral place she can find, a bordello, working as a maid. Dark, hilarious and compelling.

Best American Comics 2014, Hougton Mifflin Harcourt. Every year this book highlights an amazing assortment of comics. A dizzying array of American talent, this is THE book for people who want to truly see the diversity that the medium offers. Add to that this year’s guest editor is none other than comic scholar par excellence Scott McCloud and you’d got yourself your #1 MUST BUY for this week, if not the year.


Tim Finn, Hub Comics, Somerville, Mass.

Transformers Legacy: The Art of Transformers Packaging, IDW. Whether they know it or not, Transformers fans have wanted such a book for 31 years. So too have many ’80s fans and pop culture fans. Thanks to Jim Sorenson and Bill Forster, it’s a reality, working from scans, chromes, and original art provided by Takara, Hasbro, fans, collectors, and even one person typing this sentence. This is a treasure trove of chrome fantasy.  You’ve never seen airbrush work like this.


Walt Disney’s Uncle Scrooge by Carl Barks Vol. 2: The Seven Cities of Gold, Fantagraphics. Between the last two Barks books and the Rosa one and the Rosa Free Comic Book Day offering, I feel a bit like a broken record when it comes to hyping Fantagraphics’ Duck reprints.  If you don’t care, or don’t “get” it now, you may never — wait, that’s not right at all. Any day is another day someone can discover these, some of the greatest comics of the 20th century. Today can be yours!

She-Hulk Vol. 1: Law and Disorder, Marvel. Charles Soule became indispensible with these issues. Javier Pulido already was. This is the best of both She-Hulk worlds — the superhero stuff, and the lawyer stuff. Written by a lawyer! Buy this for anyone you know.

Batgirl #35, DC Comics. This will be our second-biggest DC seller of 2014 after Sandman Overture. It looks fun, different, and stylish, and to repeat a sentence from last week’s HOT PICKS, “Aaaaaand it only took DC three years, between this and last week’s Gotham Academy #1, to figure out that the linewide tone of the New 52 is monotonous.” Much has been made of the writers, artist and new costume, but I want to point out that New York Times-bestselling graphic novelist Maris Wicks is coloring the book.

Dimitrios Fragiskatos, manager, Midtown Comics’ Grand Central location, Manhattan

Blacksad: Amarillo HC, Dark Horse. I’m of the opinion that noir is chock full of terrible stories. I think what I hate the most about crime stories is how the lead, usually an investigator of some sort, is inconsequential to the plot or the comeuppance of the villain. Even if the lead pulls the trigger, the lifestyle or hubris of the villain would condemn them, regardless. Blacksad is no exception; weak story and character development. The last volume Silent Hell, barely had anything close to what I would consider a plot.

I am of the mind that this series is a must own.


I said that the genre of noir follows very weak tropes, even the good ones. And there are good ones. Blacksad is one of the best. Good crime stories need one quality in order to qualify: style. This is a beautifully painted story of anthropomorphic animals, with very human reactions, in a world of grit, sex and violence, brought to you by Juan Diaz Canales and Juanjo Guarnido. I guarantee you will never see anything else like it.


Scott Tipton, Co-Owner, Blastoff Comics, North Hollywood, Calif.

Batgirl #35, DC. Will this new, lighter-in-tone take on Batgirl live up to all the hype? Let’s hope so, as expectations are already soaring.

The October Faction #1, IDW. The new ongoing series from horror master Steve Niles and his Monster and Madman collaborator Damien Worm looks very promising. Looking forward to seeing what Steve has up his sleeve here.


She-Hulk, Vol. 1: Law and Disorder, Marvel. Charles Soule’s new solo series for Jennifer Walters has rapidly become one of my favorite monthly books. A fun mix of superheroics and courtroom theatrics, this first trade will be a great way to get new readers on board.

Author: 13th Dimension

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