• Review: "[King of the Flies Vol. 2:] The Origin of the World, as its title... signals, is a little more mature in its provocateur stance, but there’s still plenty of envelope pushing. The characters have grown richer and more varied... and the narrative more focused, with fewer bodies to keep track of. The art, certainly a highlight of the last book, features some clever use of color to indicate fantasy and the supernatural, both of which appear more extensively this go-round. Consider it, on the whole, analogous to Friday the 13th Part II: a step in the right direction and an improvement on the original rather than a boring retread." – Hillary Brown, Paste
• Review: "If you’re of a mind for the ugly side of humanity, the despondence of hopeless lives, you won’t find a better comic than Pirus and Mezzo’s King of the Flies. The dialogue crackles, the artwork’s astonishing, and every character’s swirling the drain of life – like a car crash, you won’t be able to look away." – Michael C. Lorah, Newsarama
• Review: "The 'ice-punk' story [The Arctic Marauder], which nods to Jules Verne and his 19th-century forward-thinking compatriots, starts out more like Brian Selznick’s The Invention of Hugo Cabret—short on text, long on pretty pictures and old-timey atmosphere—but gradually moves toward mental." – Hillary Brown, Paste
• Plug: "FLOG!, the official Fantagraphics blog, has posted a preview of R.I.P.: Best of 1985-2004, being a collection of two decade's worth of out of print and uncollected stories by Thomas Ott. I have to admit that I'm not at all familiar with the work of Thomas Ott, but the solicitation text makes this one sound really intriguing, and the artwork in the 19-page preview is pretty astounding! I can imagine that I'll probably be ordering a copy..." – Edward Kaye, Hypergeek
Marvel enlisted Paul Hornschemeier's design skills for the cover of their trade collection of Strange Tales II — check out better views & get more info at Paul's blog. I especially like the treatment of the "Parental Advisory" on the back. Nice job Paul!
• Review: "[Wolverton's] pictures, distinguished by his usual copious hachuring and cross-hatching, are illustrative, not comedic, entirely straight and, sometimes, a little terrifying. ...[In The Wolverton Bible] you... get some of the most stunning black-and-white images of Biblical stories ever produced." – R.C. Harvey, The Comics Journal
• Interview:MTV Geek talks to John Kerschbaum, whose The All-New Cartoon Boy Adventure Hour strip from Act-i-vate is being re-run on the site: "I'm in the early stages of an all-age graphic novel that I think will be quite different from anything I've done before. It's an action/adventure/mystery kind of thing. But it's too early in the process to say much more than that. I've got two children's books that I'm currently trying to find publishers for. And I have another Petey & Pussy book planned."
This omnibus collection of Thomas Ott’s short shock-ending horror stories — imagine E.C. Comics done with no words, and executed in an impossibly lush black-and-white scratchboard style — collects a dozen stories originally published in three (now out of print) thin European style “graphic albums” (Tales of Error, Greetings from Hellville and Dead End) during the 1980s and 1990s, plus 8 previously uncollected tales, including "The Breakdown" from Fantagraphics' Mome anthology and Ott's collaboration with French great David B., "La Fiancée du Lapin." The book also features an afterword by rocker Martin Eric Ain, a.k.a. Martin Erich Stricker (Hellhammer, Celtic Frost).
Presented in the same deluxe format as the now sold-out Cinema Panopticum and The Number 73304-23-4153-6-96-8, R.I.P. offers up twenty twisted tales of murder, suicide, oppression, terror, mutilation, crime, marital strife, and nuclear annihilation.
• Review: "Hell fuckin’ yeah. New Prince Valiant. Fantagraphics really does these reprints right. While they could easily pump out lazy reissues of the same poorly recolored old strips like everyone else did before them, they actually go ahead and find the original colors and it’s like nothing you’ve ever seen before. Unless you were reading Prince Valiant in the newspaper back in the early 40s. [...] The whole story is sick as hell from beginning to end. [...] What a book! For thirty bucks you get to own some of the prettiest comics that anyone's ever seen printed up like no one's ever done." – Nick Gazin, Vice
• Review: "Well, Fantagraphics Books has been printing some hefty collections of Peanuts for several years — each volume covers two years and has an introductory essay and an index (so you can easily find Joe Cool or all the references to Bo Derek). The bulk of the book, of course, is just the strips themselves, offered in chronological order without annotation or commentary so they can speak for themselves. They sent me their latest, 1979-1980, which is already the fifteenth volume in the series (and they still have twenty years to go). But you can pretty much start anywhere and be guaranteed a wonderful collection." – Jonathan Liu, Wired
• Review: "Fantagraphics’ new collection of the first two volumes [of Adèle Blanc-Sec]... in a sturdy hardback format is, if not a revelation, certainly the best presentation the material has had in English. Kim Thompson’s translation brings out the sardonic inelegance of Tardi’s dialogue much better than Lofficier’s workmanlike adventure-script translation from nearly twenty years ago, the colors are much more vibrant, and the linework better preserved... and they’re built to last, the definitive version of the work. ...Tardi is a deep cynic who uses the breathless, endlessly-deferred structure of serialized comics to comment on the futility of action and the wretchedness of history’s march. Tardi’s meticulously detailed, enormously evocative Paris is a place to luxuriate in again and again..." – Jonathan Bogart, FA
• Plug: "A new graphic novel by Jim Woodring? A mere year after the great Weathercraft? Yes, somehow, in between dreaming about his giant steel nib pen, Woodring managed to draw a whole new book." – Heidi MacDonald, The Beat
• Review: "I’ll admit that Blecky Yuckerella isn’t a comic for everyone, and that Johnny Ryan’s sense of humour is definitely an acquired taste. However, if you’ve got a sick sense of humour, like I have, you will laugh your ass off non-stop, as you read this hilarious collection from cover to cover. I loved it so much that I actually contacted Johnny Ryan by email and purchased the original artwork for the very last Blecky strip from him. If that’s not a seal of approval, I don’t know what is!" – Edward Kaye, Hypergeek
• Scene/Profile: At Comic Book Resources, Josie Campbell reports from Joyce Farmer's recent appearance at Skylight Books: "Farmer spoke frankly about the detrimental treatment her stepmother received while in a nursing home, culminating in her falling out of bed due to the orderlies' negligence. 'They killed her,' said Farmer. 'You drop an eighty-six year old person three feet to a concrete floor, it's going to end their life.' Despite its dark tones and serious subject matter, Farmer emphasized the important role humor played in the novel and in her parent's lives. 'I wanted to keep humor in the book,' said Farmer. 'I had a lot of fun in there, a lot of funny stories. I tried to make it an honest book, and show the universal in the daily minutia.'" [Edited to reflect a corrected byline.]
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