The Comics Journal Library series is the most comprehensive series of lavishly illustrated interviews conducted with cartoonists ever published. To celebrate our republication of the legendary EC line, we proudly present the first of a two-volume set of interviews with the artists and writers (and publisher!) who made EC great. Included in the first volume: career-spanning conversations with EC legends Will Elder, John Severin, Harvey Kurtzman, and Al Feldstein, as well as short interviews with EC short-timers Frank Frazetta and Joe Kubert. Also: EC Publisher William Gaines on his infamous Senate subcommittee testimony, and probing conversations between Silver Age cartoonist Gil Kane and Harvey Kurtzman, as well as contemporary alternative cartoonist Sam Henderson and MAD great Al Jaffee.
Part of what made EC the best publisher in the history of mainstream comics was some of the most beautiful drawing ever published in comic books, and every interview is profusely illustrated by pertinent examples of the work under discussion. The EC artists were renowned for their attention to detail, and the reproduction here takes full advantage of the oversized art book format.
64-page two-color 5.5" x 5.5" hardcover • $9.99 ISBN: 978-1-60699-725-3
Charlie Brown may not be the best pitcher, batter, or team manager, but his love for the game is boundless, no matter how many home runs he gives up, how many games he loses, how many errors his team makes, or how many times the game is rained out. Presented in the same format as Charlie Brown's Christmas Stocking, this delightful gift book features three complete baseball stories starring good ol’ Charlie Brown and his frustrating (and frustrated) teammates Lucy, Linus, Pigpen, Snoopy, and the rest of the gang. Whether it’s at home or on the road, on the mound or off the field, Charlie Brown gives it his all in these funny, touching testaments to his indefatigable spirit.
"Schulz was truly one of the game’s great ambassadors." – Former National Baseball Hall of Fame President Dale Petroskey
344-page black & white 8.5" x 7" hardcover • $29.99 ISBN: 978-1-60699-726-0
Peanuts enters its final decade, and The Complete Peanuts enters its homestretch, with material that is perhaps the most overlooked of Schulz’s career and soon to be reconsidered by scholars with this volume. Schulz’s cartooning has never looked more confident, and his sense of humor never more unrestrained. This is the 21st volume (of 25) of the perennial, bestselling series that collects every single one of the 18,000-plus Peanuts strips created by Charles M. Schulz, from its debut in 1950 to the end in 2000.
"Trina Robbins is one of the icons of the underground comix generation, a cartoonist and creative person always pushing forward in ways that have influenced and inspired her peers and admirers. She has become in the decades since an equally valuable advocate for the recognition of great female cartoonists." – Tom Spurgeon, The Comics Reporter
"A critical work, painstaking, impressive, funny, and moving in the way it shines a tender light on the most anonymous practitioners of the most anonymous art form of the twentieth century — but above all, a pleasure to get lost in. The universe is grateful to Trina Robbins for this book." – Michael Chabon (about The Great Woman Cartoonists)
"I was one of the legion of young girls who adored Wonder Woman back in the 1940s, and am one of the legion of admirers of Neil Gaiman's Death in the 1990s. In between I seemed to have missed a number of fascinating woman superheroes. But thanks to Trina Robbins's wonderful readable book, I now know where to look." – Jane Yolen (about The Great Women Superheroes)
"A Century of Women Cartoonists is eye-opening, inspiring, retroactive of yet another piece of women's history — and funny! So who was it that said feminists have no sense of humor?" – Robin Morgan (about A Century of Women Cartoonists)
I've been meaning to write about this for a while now, but frankly, there aren't words strong enough to describe my excitement for this collaboration between two of my all-time favorite artists, Jim Woodring and Yo La Tengo!
Their love story goes a long ways back, as we mentioned on the FLOG earlier this year when we premiered the band's most recent release Fade at the book launch party for Jim's collection Problematic: Sketchbook Drawings 2004-2012. And now Jim has taken the artwork for Fade and interpreted it into The Tree, a set of three figurines and a DVD produced by our friends at PressPop! We'll let them describe the rest:
Experience the magical collaboration of Yo La Tengo and Jim Woodring. The three band members, Ira, Georgia and James come to life as 3 original characters in the land of “the Tree!”
Present/past/future, the real/unreal, visible/invisible, sadness/joy…… "the Tree” will grow, enveloping all. And the ecstatic creatures that inhabit “the Tree” are the 3 beings blessed by the god of music. The curtain has been raised for Woodring’s mysterious and psychedelic dream land. But the story has just begun……
This product is a set of DVD and 3 soft-vinyl dolls. The DVD contains an original animation (5:20 minutes) of a mind-blowing colorful dream world that centers on “the Tree” and the 3 whimsical characters. It is made by a Japanese production company that specialize in hand-drawn animation: drop. And of course, All NEW music by Yo La Tengo! The 3 colorful soft-vinyl dolls were sculpted by Japanese master sculptor: Tomohiro Yasui. Beautiful packaging design by Jim Woodring with a bonus comic on the back.
As you can see, the resemblance is striking! These figures are currently available (in incredibly limited quanties) at the merch table on the band's European tour, or you can also pre-order a set of your own at the Matador Records website. I am already planning for them to take a ride on Mr. Bumper, and maybe get in some battles with Lorbo.
With the 1896 publication of Rose O’Neill’s comic strip The Old Subscriber Calls, in Truth Magazine, American women entered the field of comics, and they never left it.
But, you might not know that reading most of the comics histories out there. Trina Robbins has spent the last thirty years recording the accomplishments of a century of women cartoonists, and Pretty in Ink is her ultimate book, a revised, updated and rewritten history of women cartoonists, with more color illustrations than ever before, and with some startling new discoveries (such as a Native American woman cartoonist from the 1940s who was also a Corporal in the women's army, and the revelation that a cartoonist included in all of Robbins's previous histories was a man!)
In the pages of Pretty in Ink you’ll find new photos and correspondence from cartoonists Ethel Hays and Edwina Dumm, and the true story of Golden Age comic book star Lily Renee, as intriguing as the comics she drew. Although the comics profession was dominated by men, there were far more women working in the profession throughout the 20th century than other histories indicate, and they have flourished in the 21st. Robbins not only documents the increasing relevance of women throughout the 20th century, with mainstream creators such as Ramona Fradon and Dale Messick and alternative cartoonists such as Lynda Barry, Carol Tyler, and Phoebe Gloeckner, but the latest generation of women cartoonists — Megan Kelso, Cathy Malkasian, Linda Medley, and Lilli Carré, among many others. Robbins is the preeminent historian of women comic artists; forget her previous histories: Pretty in Ink is her most comprehensive volume to date.
Fantagraphics Books Launches a Kickstarter Campaign to Help Fund Spring-Summer 2014 Comics Publishing Season
FANTAGRAPHICS BOOKS IS ASKING FOR READERS' SUPPORT THROUGH KICKSTARTER. HELP FINANCE OUR SPRING-SUMMER SEASON, AND BE A PART OF THE COMPANY THAT HAS PUBLISHED MORE OF THE BEST CARTOONISTS IN THE HISTORY OF COMICS THAN ANY OTHER PUBLISHER.
Fantagraphics Books is launching a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign to help finance our Spring-Summer 2014 season of books. Earlier this Fantagraphics Co-Publisher Kim Thompson was diagnosed with cancer and died four months later, on June 19, 2013. Because Kim was such an active part of our company, his death has had repercussions — both emotionally and financially. Kim edited our European graphic novel line and, as a result of his illness, 13 of the books scheduled for the Spring and Summer of 2013 had to be cancelled or postponed. This represents the loss of one-third of the entire season. We have suffered a severe shortfall that will impede our ability to produce next season's books. That's why we're asking our faithful readers and new converts alike to help us recoup — and help finance our 2014 Spring-Summer books through Kickstarter. We are offering a varied list of premium options, from signed copies of the books from that season to a target-shooting trip with Fantagraphics' Publisher Gary Groth.
OUR NEXT SEASON: APRIL-AUGUST 2014
Fantagraphics' Spring-Summer season is comprised of 39 books by a stellar line-up of cartoonists. There are a number of books from names familiar to longtime comics readers — Peter Bagge, Daniel Clowes, Joe Sacco, Drew Friedman, Michael Kupperman, Jim Woodring, Don Rosa, Tony Millionaire, and The Hernandez Brothers. Not to mention any number of other names that could anchor a comics Hall of Fame: Charles Schulz, Steve Ditko, Simon & Kirby, Hal Foster, Carl Barks, Floyd Gottfredson, L.B. Cole, Jacques Tardi, John Severin, S. Clay Wilson, Wally Wood, and more. We also have one of our strongest seasons of original graphic novels ever, including new books from Olivier Schrauwen, Simon Hanselmann, Esther Pearl Watson, Conor Stechschulte, Carol Swain, Lane Milburn, Eleanor Davis, and Ed Piskor.
From The Complete witzend to The Complete Eightball, Buddy Bradley to Megg & Mogg, and Don Rosa's Ducks to S. Clay Wilson's pirates, plus new Peanuts, Donald Duck, EC Comics and Love and Rockets books, our 2014 lineup truly features The World's Greatest Cartoonists.
And that's merely one publishing season of five months; we publish a virtual pantheon of cartoonists every season.
Fantagraphics Books has been waving the banner of cartooning for almost 40 years, and we have always believed in the artistic potential of comics — in the medium's power and subtlety; its vast capaciousness and intimate smallness; its ability to transport us to different worlds or express the human heart in conflict with itself; its ability to vivify political and historical events or reveal intimate autobiographical truths; its hilariously vulgar humor, or its moving urban dramas. We strive to find the best and brightest comics from new cartoonists and from the classic archives.
THE PERENNIAL STRUGGLE
Ours is and always has been an intrinsically difficult commercial enterprise, and we have survived due to a combination of great taste, sheer will, good luck, and reasonable business acumen. Still, it has never been easy. Fantagraphics has always been a guerilla publisher — lean and mean. In order to do what we do, we have always kept our overhead low and our lifestyle modest. We publish about 100 books a year with a staff of less then 20 — a level of efficiency unheard of in corporate publishing. We pride ourselves on taking risks, publishing work based on merit, and a commitment to serious artistic standards.
Fantagraphics has never existed comfortably within the traditional capitalist model — ruthlessly competitive, obsessed with growth, and the endless accumulation of surplus money. Our artistic values have always tempered our profitability. Fantagraphics has managed to scrape by, but we realized that with the advent of crowd funding, we are in a position to make an end-run around the most brutish strictures of the marketplace and appeal directly to our readers through Kickstarter. We are asking the public to help us continue this quixotic enterprise. At the end of the day, we cannot rely on anyone but our readers.
These glimpses of an advance copy of Prison Pit Book 5 by Johnny Ryan show a couple of the foes our antihero Cannibal Fuckface has to deal with: on the cover, one of the Holocaust Brothers and their death machines, unleashed by the Prison Boss to deal with C.F., and in the pages, the deadly Slitt, out for revenge. (This time, it's personal.) Can C.F. withstand the onslaught? Can the onslaught withstand C.F.? All this plus Abortion Bucket and the mystery of the Caligulon ("insert me into your urethra") in 124 gut-churning pages.
Look for the book to drop like a hacked-off limb in about 8 weeks, and secure yourself one of the first copies by pre-ordering now.
The latest issue of The Believer, published by McSweeney's, has a very sweet drawing of Barnaby on the cover! You can grab a copy of it at your nearest bookstore or from the McSweeney's website yourself! Vol. II, Issue #9 features a fun cover by J. Otto Seibold and stories on Indiana's efforts to renew urban areas, the SoCal feminist art scene and more.
Wondering about Barnaby by Crockett Johnson, edited by Philip Neland Eric Reynolds? You have come to the exact right place! Volume one of the little tyke running around and keeping his fairy godfather out of trouble during World War II came out earlier this year and volume two is in the works.
It seems like the last volume just came out, and already we have advance copies of Shimura Takako's Wandering Son Vol. 6 to show off to you. The series is starting to take up a nice chunk of shelf space! The emotional complexity continues to deepen for our gender-questioning junior high heroes and their quirky cast of friends, rivals, crushes, mentors, teachers, and families.
Meanwhile, Vol. 5 inspired Terry Hong to write on the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center Bookdragon blog: "Sweet and gentle, with just enough angst and worry over changing bodies and emotional alliances. Creator Shimura Takako continues to share an enlightening journey toward maturity in a fluid new world that defies easy labels."
Impatient for it to hit bookstore shelves around New Year's? Pre-order now and you can be among the first to read it — we usually get our stock first!
• Pasadena, CA: The great Jaime Hernandez comes to The Crawford Family Forum for an evening of art, books, and conversation. KPCC FM "Off-Ramp" producer Kevin Ferguson talks with Hernandez about his latest work, how it relates to Love and Rockets, and where his future's taking him. (more info)
• Seattle, WA: Fantagraphics artists Megan Kelso, Roberta Gregory, and David Lasky, along with fellow local artists Colleen Frakes and Stan Shaw will appear at the Seattle Public Library at 7:00 PM to discuss their artistic careers and their contributions to the Graphic Canon anthology! (more info)
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