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Category >> Carol Swain

Weekly OCD 8.19.14
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under Roberta GregoryOCDMegan Kelsomary fleenerLucy KnisleyJessica AbelEllen ForneyEleanor DavisCarol TylerCarol Swain 19 Aug 2014 11:30 AM

This week's hen's egg clutch of Online Commentaries and Diversions:

Gast by Carol Swain - CoverReview: Gast by Carol Swain

"What’s most impressive about Swain’s story is its quiet nature, and its delicate portrayal of darkness. Instead of going for the obvious and imposing gruesome imagery to match the backdrop of macabre, Swain portrays the setting as a far more subtle place to contain unease, at time bucolic even with the fog of despair that sometimes hangs there." – John Seven, Vermicious

 

How to Be Happy by Eleanor Davis - CoverReview: How to Be Happy by Eleanor Davis

"That's Davis' sensibility. In her roundabout way, she dramatizes not the prospect of happiness, but the promise of it. Her natural territory is found in all the funny and tragic effects of that promise." – Etelka Lehoczky, NPR

Plug: Look who's sitting pretty at number 10 on the NY Times' Best Sellers List this week!

 

Weekly OCD 8.05.14
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under OCDLucy KnisleyinterviewsGlenn BrayEleanor DavisDrew FriedmanCCICarol SwainAn Age of License 5 Aug 2014 11:00 AM

This week's summery, sun-warmed collection of Online Commentaries and Diversions:

Gast by Carol SwainReview: Gast by Carol Swain

"Woven through the pages, impressing lightly on Helen’s still child-like mind, are issues such as transgenderism and isolation, appearance and identity, the harsh truths surrounding the commercialisation of nature and the issue of suicide among struggling farmers." – Tom Murphy, Broken Frontier

 

How To Be Happy by Eleanor DavisReview: How To Be Happy by Eleanor Davis

"Davis notes in the book's opening pages that 'this is not a book about how to be happy,' and I agree. How to Be Happy is a book that shows people living with despair, grief, and unhappiness. It is a book about how people fail and sometimes succeed in calming the harsh storm inside ourselves." – Sequential State

Interview: Scout Books profiles Eleanor Davis: "Initially I think I tried to water down my stuff too much, which was a mistake. Now I try to be as much of my own voice as I can get away with. The art directors tell me when it’s too much. What I’ve found is that if I enjoy myself making a piece, people will respond to it. If I’m bored making a piece folks won’t like looking at it either."

 

Heroes of the Comics: Portraits of the Legends of Comic Books by Drew FriedmanReview: Heroes of the Comics: Portraits of the Legends of Comic Books by Drew Friedman

"Friedman is known for adroitly capturing gesture, mood, and psychological nuance in vivid portraits somehow combining elements of caricature and realism…Each of his portraits feels so alive, it is like being welcomed into each artist’s private world." – Steven Heller, The Atlantic

 

The Blighted Eye: Original Comic Art from the Glenn Bray CollectionReview: The Blighted Eye: Original Comic Art from the Glenn Bray Collection by various artists

"I knew that [Glenn Bray] was the first person to seek out and collect the work of the great Donald Duck comic book artist writer Carl Barks back in the 1960s, that he published some small books about grotesque-artist Basil Wolverton, and that he was the champion of forgotten genius Stanislav Szukalski…He was probably the first real comic book art collector, buying original work in an era when everyone else considered it to be worthless." – Mark Frauenfelder, Wink

 

  • Plug: Lucy Knisley's An Age of License made Publishers Weekly's list of Most Anticipated Books of Fall 2014!
  • Commentary: Comic Book Resources recaps Fantagraphics' SDCC Panel, "Fantagraphics Forward": "Groth said that what sets Fantagraphics apart from other comics publishers is the fact that 'almost everything we publish is written and drawn by the same person,' an approach which has contributed to defining the Fantagraphics aesthetic."
New Comics Day 7.30.14
Written by Jen Vaughn | Filed under New Comics DayEleanor DavisCarol Swain 30 Jul 2014 12:28 PM
This week's comic shop shipment is slated to include the following new titles. Read on to see what comics-blog commentators and web-savvy comic shops are saying about them (more to be added as they appear), check out our previews at the links, and contact your local shop to confirm availability. 

152-page color/b&w 7.75" x 10.125" hardcover • $24.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-740-6

"A mix of evocative, geometric watercolors and fluid pen-and-ink cartoons, How to Be Happy tells stories of sad people, lonely people, strong people, confident people, all trying to find a tiny bit of happiness in life...Davis' clever and sometimes jaw-droppingly beautiful artwork makes those stories feel real." - Dan Kois, Slate Book Review

"This collection of short stories about people desperately trying to suppress or embrace or just somehow deal with all the difficult emotions careening around in their brain just underscores what those who have seen Davis' work in scattered anthologies already suspected: that she is a tremendous talent, and one of the smartest voices working in comics today." - Chris Mautner, Robot 6  
 
Gast  
Gast
by Carol Swain

176-page black & white 7.5" x 10" softcover • $22.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-755-0 

"When she made her debut in the late 1980s, with a prolific burst of anthologised short stories and her own Way Out Strips comics, her unique style already seemed fully formed: spare, oblique, atmospheric and textured, characterised by an air of mystery and an a seam of dry, humour." –Tom Murphy, Broken Frontier
 
"I suspect this will be one of those wonderful slow-burners that, as you flip through each page slowly but inexorably draws you in and immerses you." –Richard Bruton, Forbidden Planet 











Gast by Carol Swain - Now in Stock!
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under new releasesCarol Swain 28 Jul 2014 2:00 PM

Just arrived and shipping now from our mail-order department:

Gast by Carol Swain - Cover

Gast
by Carol Swain

176-page black & white 7.5" x 10" softcover • $22.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-755-0

See Previews / Order Now

Helen is an amateur bird watcher and naturalist who lives in a rural community in Wales. When local farmer Bill tells Helen that a "rare bird" named Emrys killed himself at Cuddig farm, she decides to investigate. One of the dogs at the farm tells her, by way of explanation, that Emrys "had no feathers and couldn’t fly." She plucks an old cosmetic kit from a dumpster and discovers it belonged to Emrys. Inventorying the kit's contents, she finds a spent .12 gauge shotgun shell. Her attempt to learn more about Emrys turns into a journey of self-discovery and ultimately a hard-fought reconciliation with the world — as it is. Carol Swain's Gast is the rare kind of contemporary graphic novel that critics are conjuring when they exult over the promise of the art form — a philosophically mature vision, uniquely executed by an artist wholly in control of her craft. In Gast, Helen's inner life is slowly revealed through a mixture of naturalistic detail and phantasmagoric occurrences.

Gast by Carol Swain - Video/Photo Slideshow
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under videopreviewsnew releasesCarol Swain 8 Jul 2014 5:00 PM

Gast
by Carol Swain

176-page black & white 7.5" x 10" softcover • $22.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-755-0

Ships in: July 2014 (subject to change) — Pre-Order Now

Helen is an amateur bird watcher and naturalist who lives in a rural community in Wales. When local farmer Bill tells Helen that a "rare bird" named Emrys killed himself at Cuddig farm, she decides to investigate. One of the dogs at the farm tells her, by way of explanation, that Emrys "had no feathers and couldn’t fly." She plucks an old cosmetic kit from a dumpster and discovers it belonged to Emrys. Inventorying the kit's contents, she finds a spent .12 gauge shotgun shell. Her attempt to learn more about Emrys turns into a journey of self-discovery and ultimately a hard-fought reconciliation with the world — as it is. Carol Swain's Gast is the rare kind of contemporary graphic novel that critics are conjuring when they exult over the promise of the art form — a philosophically mature vision, uniquely executed by an artist wholly in control of her craft. In Gast, Helen's inner life is slowly revealed through a mixture of naturalistic detail and phantasmagoric occurrences.

View Video & Photo Slideshow in New Window

Gast by Carol Swain - Cover

Gast by Carol Swain - First Look
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under GastComing AttractionsCarol Swain 3 Jun 2014 2:47 PM

Gast by Carol Swain - Cover

Gast by Carol Swain - Inside page

Advance copies of Carol Swain's Gast have arrived fresh off the printers, and we couldn't be more excited to give you a first glimpse inside this gorgeous book. Gast follows amateur naturalist and bird-watcher Helen as she investigates the suicide of a 'rare bird' named Emrys. In the process of unraveling this mysterious occurrence and the life of Emrys, Helen also goes on a journey of self-discovery.

We expect the book to hit the shelves by mid-August. Read an excerpt and pre-order your copy today!

Gast by Carol Swain - Excerpt
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under previewsComing AttractionsCarol Swain 19 May 2014 11:00 AM

The great Carol Swain is back with a new solo graphic novel due out in August. Gast is her longest story to date and continues the body of work that led Time Out to dub her "the Raymond Carver of British comics."

In our downloadable excerpt, which consists of 3 brief chapters, a young woman in the Welsh countryside observes swallows building a nest in the eaves of a barn and returns home for dinner, where she learns of the suicide of a "rare bird" at a neighboring farm. Being an avid birdwatcher, she makes plans to investigate the mystery.

For the rest of the story, pre-order your copy of the book today.

Gast by Carol Swain

Gast by Carol Swain - Cover Uncovered
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Coming AttractionsCarol Swain 23 Apr 2014 4:15 PM

Gast by Carol Swain

Moody, atmospheric, finely observed, shot through with post-punk tension... Carol Swain's comics voice is singular, and has been lauded by Alan Moore, Time, The Guardian, Time Out, and Publishers Weekly. We're excited to be bringing out her first solo graphic novel in several years, Gast, this Summer. Part mystery, part character study, part magical-realist fable, told through her quietly bold, tactile pencil artwork, Gast is a book that only Swain could create.

Look for our usual preview rollout over the weeks and months to come until the book's release in July or so; in the meantime, you can get in on the pre-sale now.

Spring-Summer 2014, part 14: Luba, Gast, Gems
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Love and RocketsLane MilburnKickstarterGilbert HernandezComing AttractionsCarol Swain 26 Nov 2013 5:43 PM

Our campaign to support our Spring-Summer 2014 season on Kickstarter is ongoing, and we're continuing to spotlight the books in question, a couple at a time. (We missed yesterday, so we're doing 3 today.) We've also put our season catalog online for you to browse. (Please note that all artwork, contents, prices, specs, and release dates are preliminary and subject to change.)

Luba and Her Family prelim cover

Luba and Her Family (The Love and Rockets Library)
by Gilbert Hernandez

312-page black & white 7.5" x 9.25" softcover • $19.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-753-6 

Gilbert Hernandez's characters bid "Farewell, My Palomar" as they exit the Eden of the Central American town in Volume 10 of the Love and Rockets Library. Locals have begun to drift up to the United States to seek their fortunes, but when an earthquake levels Palomar, ever-resourceful Luba and her clan are on the move once again. In the U.S. the lives of Maria's daughters — mayor and matriarch Luba, body-builder Petra, and therapist/film star Fritz — and their families become more and more intertwined. Mischievous children's show hostess Doralís MCs many (but not all) of the sisters' romances, and exploits are detailed in missives from comics-loving Venus to her fierce, one-armed cousin Casimira.

For a Kickstarter pledge of $30 or more, pre-order this book signed by Gilbert Hernandez while supplies last! Or, for a pledge of $200 or more, get an exclusive Gilbert Hernandez print! (Or increase your pledge to $230 or more and let us know you want both!)

Gast prelim cover

Gast
by Carol Swain

176-page black & white 7.5" x 10.25" • $22.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-755-0

Helen is an amateur bird watcher and naturalist who lives in a rural community in Wales. When local farmer Bill tells Helen that a "rare bird" named Emrys killed himself at Cuddig farm, she decides to investigate. One of the dogs at the farm tells her, by way of explanation, that Emrys "had no feathers and couldn’t fly." She plucks an old cosmetic kit from a dumpster and discovers it belonged to Emrys. Inventorying the kit's contents, she finds a spent .12 gauge shotgun shell. Her attempt to learn more about Emrys turns into a journey of self-discovery and ultimately a hard-fought reconciliation with the world — as it is. Carol Swain's Gast is the rare kind of contemporary graphic novel that critics are conjuring when they exult over the promise of the art form — a philosophically mature vision, uniquely executed by an artist wholly in control of her craft. In Gast, Helen's inner life is slowly revealed through a mixture of naturalistic detail and phantasmagoric occurrences.

For a Kickstarter pledge of $30 or more, pre-order this book signed by Carol Swain while supplies last!

Twelve Gems prelim cover

Twelve Gems
by Lane Milburn

220-page black & white 5.75" x 8.5" softcover • $24.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-751-2 

This sci-fi epic takes place somewhere in the outer cosmos, beyond reckoning or observation. The mysterious Dr. Z has enlisted three space heroes to search the galaxy for the fabled Twelve Gems of Power: the hulking alien-brawn Furz; the beautiful and deadly sabre-wielding Venus; and the soft-spoken canine technician, Dogstar. They meet many strange and storied characters on their journey, but none so strange or sinister as their dear benefactor himself. With a heavy dose of humor and wall-to-wall action, this is one of the most action-packed and funny books of the year.

For a Kickstarter pledge of $35 or more, pre-order this book signed by Lane Milburn while supplies last! Or, for a pledge of $40 or more, get an exclusive Twelve Gems t-shirt! Or, for a pledge of $60 or more, get the book, signed, with a sketch, and one of twelve hand-made Power Gems! (Or increase your pledge to the sum of all the rewards you want!)





Daily OCD: 5/20/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Wilfred SantiagoRIP MDreviewsR Kikuo JohnsonPaul HornschemeierMark KalesnikoLove and RocketsLewis TrondheimLeslie SteinJoyce FarmerGilbert HernandezDavid BDaily OCDCarol SwainBlazing Combat21 20 May 2011 6:42 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

21: The Story of Roberto Clemente

Review: "21: The Story of Roberto Clemente brings together comics and baseball, two of America's most popular conveyers of epic mythology. Author Wilfred Santiago also incorporates elements of classical and avant-garde jazz in his sinuously illustrated narrative of Clemente's life. It takes an imagination as rich as Mr. Santiago's to tap into various mythological languages to tell the Pittsburgh Pirate's iconic story... Instead of dwelling on sources of obvious resentment, Mr. Santiago defaults to illustrating Clemente's humanity. We're treated to close-ups of his most noble and ignoble moments. The artist refuses to treat him like a plastic saint, because a perfect Clemente would make boring reading, indeed. ...Wilfred Santiago has done as good a job as anyone ever has in reintroducing the longtime Pittsburgh Pirate to a new generation." – Tony Norman, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Eye of the Majestic Creature

Review: "You’d be hard-pressed to find a more downright affable character than blithely blitzed Larrybear, the young female focus of Leslie Stein’s ongoing semiautobiographical comic [Eye of the Majestic Creature ], whose first four issues are collected here.... Stein gives us the slackerly, star-eyed alternative to a cadre of 'misanthropic, self-pitying comics about unappreciated cartoonists,' as Tom De Haven characterized it... But where the aforementioned Crumb-descended misanthropes have all more or less grown up, Stein’s Larrybear is a naïve woman on the verge of Whatever, a cute Candide floundering about in an increasingly complicated world. ...[T]his book [is] such a pleasure..." – Richard Gehr, The Comics Journal

Approximate Continuum Comics

Review: "Lewis Trondheim is one of the world’s best cartoonists.... Approximate Continuum Comics is some of Trondheim’s earliest autobiographical work, dating mostly from 1993 and 1996. If you’re read his more recent slivers of life observations... then you already know the sublime wit and casual self-deprecation of Trondheim’s cartooning. Approximate Continuum Comics is where that [tack] begins." – Michael C. Lorah, Newsarama

Love from the Shadows

Review: "Love from the Shadows is a very strange story. Surreal is such an overused word, but it is the best description I can come up with to describe the tone of the work. There is a disjointed, dream-like progression to the narrative.... As with so much of Hernandez's work, it is beautifully illustrated. The art is suffused with emotion and atmosphere and eroticism. The work Hernandez does is a critical component to his examining all of the societal, psychological, and sexual issues. …Love from the Shadows [is] an intriguing, offbeat story that is open to examination and interpretation. …Love from the Shadows is an intellectually stimulating read. And the artwork is magnificent." – Benjamin Herman, Associated Content

The Littlest Pirate King

Review: "The Littlest Pirate King is a wonderful phantasmagoria, as likely to entertain a ten year old as a thirty year eight year old (and I say this having had the book pulled off my lap and spirited away by my own ten year old). There is a lovely innocence to proceedings, a seemingly uncalculated desire to thrill and chill and transport... that has had me flicking back through the book a good dozen times since I’ve read it. This is the kind of book that got me reading books when I was a wee nipper, and it’s the kind of book that keeps me reading now that I’m the furthest possible thing from a wee nipper." – Bookmunch

Blazing Combat [Softcover Ed. - Pre-Order]

Review: "Blazing Combat is a book I'm quite proud to have in my collection. It's a work of art, has a message that's strong even over 40 years after the material was first created, and I'll come back to this at least once every few years." – Philip Reed, BattleGrip

List: Library Journal's Martha Cornog gathers recommended graphic novels dealing with themes of Health & Medicine, including:

Special Exits

Special Exits by Joyce Farmer: "An excellent alert for those new to the path (for themselves or for relatives) and a validation for those already familiar with this normal yet seemly so abnormal life stage."

Alex

Alex by Mark Kalesniko: "This exploration of depression, futile escapism, and the healing power of art has been described as a difficult read but very funny."

Giraffes in My Hair: A Rock 'n' Roll Life

Giraffes in My Hair: A Rock 'n' Roll Life by Bruce Paley & Carol Swain: "Hanging out here and crashing there, Paley narrates vignettes of debauchery and daily life in a Woodstock version of American Splendor. Partner Swain's smudgy, black-and-white drawings carry his grimy, nostalgic account."

Mother, Come Home

Mother, Come Home by Paul Hornschemeier: "An exquisitely written and beautifully drawn exploration of grief."

RIP, M.D. [Pre-Order]

Rip M.D. by Mitch Shauer, Mike Vosburg et al.: "A 'full-color, all-ages adventure' with an animated cartoon series in development, and a promising bet for reluctant readers."

Night Fisher

List: Robot 6's Chris Mautner names "Six noteworthy debut comics," saying of R. Kikuo Johnson's Night Fisher "this tale of disaffected adolescence and drug dealing in Hawaii is certainly compelling and suggests that Johnson is an artist capable of producing great work. Unfortunately, he has yet to follow up on that initial promise. But Night Fisher still marks him as an artist to watch out for."

Mome Vol. 17 - Winter 2010

Profile: Time Out Chicago's Web Behrens catches up with Paul Hornschemeier: "'It is one of those names: You’re destined to either be a writer or scientist,' says local author-artist Paul, the man both blessed and saddled with the brainy surname. 'You’re not going to be a rock star with a name like Hornschemeier.'"

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