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How to Be Happy
How to Be Happy
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Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 5: Outwits the Phantom Blot [U.S./CANADA ONLY]
Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 5: Outwits the Phantom Blot [U.S./CANADA ONLY]
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Special Exits [Softcover Ed.]
Special Exits [Softcover Ed.]
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Prince Valiant Vol. 9: 1953-1954
Prince Valiant Vol. 9: 1953-1954
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Book By Its Cover Review of HOBK
Written by Jacob Covey | Filed under Ray Fenwick 27 Mar 2008 11:32 AM

HOBK_Fake.jpg

 

"Some of these lessons make me smile and some of them make me laugh outloud and every one of them amazes me further at what a talent Ray is...I don’t think anyone could argue that he's not a true master at hand-lettering."

(UPDATE: Completists please note that the artist himself submitted that cover design above. A Flog Exclusive!)

The greatest Herriman tributes ever (part two)
Written by Kim Thompson | Filed under Krazy Kat 27 Mar 2008 11:25 AM

Here are some more Krazy Kat strips drawn by seven-to-eleven-year old bambini, courtesy of their teacher Alessandro Santi. (See yesterday's FLOG! for the first batch.) More to come tomorrow!

By the way, we just got in the new, second edition of the KRAZY KAT book THE KAT WHO WALKS IN BEAUTY, now with a different colored spine (yes, collectors, this is meant to drive you crazy). If you DON'T have this book yet and were cursing yourself for missing it when it went out of print... well, there you go.

(Click images below for larger sizes on Flickr.)

Krazy Kat tribute by Italian schoolchildren - page 3

Krazy Kat tribute by Italian schoolchildren - page 4

Krazy Kat tribute by Italian schoolchildren - page 5

Members Preview: Explainers
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under previewsnew releasesmetaJules Feiffer 26 Mar 2008 4:19 PM

Explainers by Jules Feiffer

This week's free preview is a downloadable 25-page excerpt from Explainers: The Complete Village Voice Strips (1956-66), the first volume in a major archival project collecting the entirety of Jules Feiffer's strip for the venerable New York City weekly paper. These previews are exclusive to registered Fantagraphics.com users, so sign up and/or sign in to view. As a reminder, Gary Groth's Introduction to the book is reprinted here on the Fantagraphics website (with a slideshow of 11 strips selected by Groth) and can be read by the general public, no registration required.

A parenthetical aside on the panel above: I was startled by Feiffer's use of "omigod" in this strip dated January 2, 1957 — decades before the word was popularized by the whole "Valley Girl" fad of the 1980s.

(As a reminder, 20/20 Club members receive these previews two weeks before we post them on the website, just one of many great reasons to join up...)

Now in stock: Safe Area Gorazde by Joe Sacco (New Softcover Printing)
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under new releasesJoe Sacco 26 Mar 2008 3:36 PM

Safe Area Gorazde (New Printing) by Joe Sacco

Safe Area Gorazde (New Printing)
By Joe Sacco

Praised by The New York Times, Brill's Content and Publisher's Weekly, Safe Area Gorazde is the long-awaited and highly sought after 240-page look at war in the former Yugoslavia. Sacco (the critically-acclaimed author of Palestine) spent five months in Bosnia in 1996, immersing himself in the human side of life during wartime, researching stories that are rarely found in conventional news coverage. The book focuses on the Muslim-held enclave of Gorazde, which was besieged by Bosnian Serbs during the war. Sacco lived for a month in Gorazde, entering before the Muslims trapped inside had access to the outside world, electricity or running water. Safe Area Gorazde is Sacco's magnum opus and with it he is poised too become one of America's most noted journalists. The book features an introduction by Christopher Hitchens, political columnist for The Nation and Vanity Fair.

The new Seventh softcover printing (2008) features an all-new cover design by Adam Grano.

240-page black & white 7" x 10" softcover $19.95
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Now in stock: The Kat Who Walked in Beauty by George Herriman (2nd Printing)
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under new releasesKrazy Kat 26 Mar 2008 3:35 PM

The Kat Who Walked in Beauty (2nd Printing) by George Herriman

The Kat Who Walked in Beauty (2nd Printing)
By George Herriman

Presenting a unique, stand-alone companion to our Krazy & Ignatz series. The Kat Who Walked In Beauty collects many rare and unique dailies from the 1910s and 1920s. Though many readers are aware of Herriman's dynamic Sunday pages, few know that during 1920, in what must have been an editorially unrestrictive period for Herriman, he drew some of the most graphic and brilliantly conceived daily strips ever created; they look like "mini-Sunday" strips. This nine-month stretch of dailies, never-before-reprinted, is among the treasures included in this collection. The collection includes many other Herriman gems, including the very first stand-alone Krazy & Ignatz strips from 1911, and the illustrations from Herriman"s Krazy Kat Jazz pantomime/ballet, performed to captivated New York audiences in 1922. This book fills in several gaps in the daily strip history, reproduced at close to their original size.

The new 2nd printing features an orange spine and interior spot color; we also still have limited quantities of the first printing, with a green spine and interior spot color. Please indicate your choice when ordering.

114-page black & white 15" x 11" hardcover $29.95
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Now in stock: Hall of Best Knowledge by Ray Fenwick
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Ray Fenwicknew releases 26 Mar 2008 3:34 PM

Hall of Best Knowledge by Ray Fenwick

Hall of Best Knowledge
By Ray Fenwick

Ray Fenwick has pioneered his own medium of storytelling, one best described as "typographical comics." Hall of Best Knowledge is presented as a handsome, personal journal written by an unnamed voice, referred to only as "The Author." Little is known about him; he makes occasional, derogatory references to a twin brother and younger sibling, but reveals little else. He clearly fashions himself a genius, writing with a faux-aristocratic air, and it is presumably his belief in his own genius that leads him to want to share his knowledge with the world. Each page features information such as "It hardly needs mentioning that riding a pony is no intellectual triumph.... If riding a pony is so fantastic, why have I never read of any renowned pony-riding genius? It is because such a person does not exist, making it a foolish waste of time unworthy of attention." These pearls of wisdom are lettered in an elegant, almost obsessive fashion, entirely hand-crafted and bedecked with Ionic columns and fleurs-de-lis.

It becomes obvious to the reader early on that all is not as it seems; only at the end does the picture become completely clear. The ensuing journey is a riotous tour through the narrator's ego and id, and the humor builds accordingly as he is revealed to be not nearly as smart—or sophisticated—as he thinks.

Hall of Best Knowledge is part graphic novel, part art object, part satire, part puzzle. The slow unfolding of the author and his story builds humor with each page, creating a peculiar examination of the idea of genius and the problems that arise in the search and transmission of knowledge.

HOBK is an elegantly designed and packaged book, presented as a found journal, with a belly band and other production/design touches to further solidify and give form to the concept of the book.

168-page black & white 7" x 7" softcover $19.99
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Now in stock: The Complete Peanuts 1967-1968 (Vol. 9)
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Peanutsnew releasesCharles M Schulz 26 Mar 2008 3:33 PM

The Complete Peanuts 1967-1968 (Vol. 9) by Charles M. Schulz

The Complete Peanuts 1967-1968 (Vol. 9)
By Charles M. Schulz

NOTE: BECAUSE OF OUR CONTRACT WITH THE LICENSOR THESE BOOKS CANNOT BE SOLD OUTSIDE OF NORTH AMERICA. IF YOU RESIDE ANYWHERE OTHER THAN THE U.S. OR CANADA PLEASE DO NOT TRY TO ORDER THEM FROM OUR WEBSITE; YOUR ORDER WILL NOT BE PROCESSED.

JOHN WATERS TALKS CHARLIE BROWN AS THE '60S WIND DOWN.

As we rush toward the end of Peanuts' second full decade, Snoopy finds himself almost completely engrossed in his persona as the World War I Flying Ace — to the point where he goes to camp with Charlie Brown and maintains his persona throughout the entire two-week period (much to Peppermint Patty's bafflement).

Still, Snoopy looms large, so this volume (a particularly Snoopy-heavy one) sees him arm-wrestling Lucy as the "Masked Marvel" and then taking off for Petaluma for the national arm-wrestling championship; impersonating a vulture and a "Cheshire Beagle"; enjoying golf and hockey; attempting a jaunt to France for an ice-skating championship; running for office on the "Paw" ticket; being traded to Peppermint Patty's baseball team, then un-traded and installed as team manager by a guilt-ridden Charlie Brown; as well as dealing with the return of his original owner, Lila. If you're surprised by that last one, imagine how Charlie Brown feels...

Lila makes only a brief appearance (as does José Peterson, a short-lived — and short — star member of Charlie Brown's baseball team), but this volume sees the appearance of what would be Schulz's most controversial major character: Franklin. (Yes, in 1968 the introduction of a Black character caused a stir.)

Peppermint Patty, working toward her ascendancy as one of the major Peanuts players in the 1970s and 1980s, also has several major turns, including a storyline in which she’s the tent monitor for three little girls (who call her "Sir" — a joke Schulz would pick up later with Peppermint Patty's friend Marcie).

Stories involving other characters include a sequence in which Linus's flippant comment to his Gramma that he'll kick his blanket habit when she kicks her smoking habit backfires; Lucy bullies Linus, pesters Schroeder, and organizes a "crab-in"; plus Charlie Brown copes with Valentine's Day depression, the Little Red-Haired Girl, the increasingly malevolent kite-eating tree, and baseball losses. In other words: Vintage Peanuts!

344-page black & white 8.5" x 7" hardcover $28.99
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The greatest Herriman tributes ever (part one)
Written by Kim Thompson | Filed under Krazy Kat 26 Mar 2008 10:18 AM

Krazy Kat tribute by Italian schoolchildren - cover

Krazy Kat aficionado Alessandro Santi teaches comics in Italy, and... well, let him tell it: "I am sending you the comics pages some children, aged 7-11, have done in January-March 2006 during my lessons, financed by the city town council. At that time I showed and read your marvellous Krazy & Ignatz volumes — with the Italian version of the first volume of the series — to twelve children in Prato, my home town, and then they created their own Sunday pages and coloured them with watercolours. They loved Krazy Komics since the first lesson! Hope you enjoy our homage to the Great George Herriman!"

This is me again: I've seen lots of cartoonists try to capture the spirit of Herriman or Krazy Kat in their work, from Bobby London and Chris Ware on down, but these may be some of my favorites. Enjoy them!

Alessandro sent so many we're going to break them up over four days. So come back here tomorrow for another batch!

(Click each page for larger sizes on Flickr.) 

Krazy Kat tribute by Italian schoolchildren - page 1

Krazy Kat tribute by Italian schoolchildren - page 2

Cartoons against cars
Written by Eric Reynolds | Filed under Ellen Forney 26 Mar 2008 9:36 AM

  

Ellen Forney is producing a new cartoon series for the Bellevue Transportation Department to promote alternative options to cars. Readers write in with their crazy!whimsical! ways to get around, and every other week, Forney makes a cartoon out of one of them.

Want her to draw your idea? Write in!

Our hood.
Written by Eric Reynolds | Filed under Fantagraphics Bookstore 26 Mar 2008 9:18 AM

  

This has nothing to do with comics, but some of you might enjoy this local news story about gentrification in the Seattle neighborhood of Georgetown, home of the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery. If you haven't experienced G-town's many splendors, come on down and say hi to Drew Friedman tomorrow night and see for yourself.