We recently got a fresh batch of signed bookplates back from Charles Burns for his classic albums Big Baby, El Borbah and Skin Deep — they're free with purchase of their respective books while supplies last! (And see here for our other books available with free signed bookplates!)
If you were one of the fans crushed in the crowd when Charles Burns visited the store back in November, then hopefully you caught his discussion about the similarities in his latest novel X'ed Out and Hergé's classic The Adventures of Tintin. (Ken Parille has a great run-down on those similarities on The Comics Journal blog here.)
And in a nod to the bootleg Hergé titles that float around, Burns has created his own "bootleg" of X'ed Out, re-arranging the panels and adding brand-new artwork to create Johnny 23. French publisher Le Dernier Cri printed only a few thousand copies of this one, and from what I understand, it ain't getting reprinted, so you should get yours now.
Oh, and did I mention it's written in ALIEN? 'Cause... yeah. And Burns has said, it's not a translation of the text from X'ed Out. Apparently, there are keys online somewhere, or maybe you can send some cereal box proof-of-purchases and get a decoder ring. But just think, once you learn the language, won't that look impressive on future job resumes for our eventual alien overlords?
Johnny 23, and many, many, many other Charles Burns titles, are currently in stock at the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery, located at 1201 S. Vale Street in Seattle's Georgetown district. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Phone: (206) 658-0110. See you soon!
• List: Emily Pullen of fave L.A. bookstore Skylight Books names Stephen Dixon's What Is All This? as one of her Favorites from 2010: "I have a crush on this book: the cover, the paper, the heavy ink. Touch it. Read two stories. Try not to bring it home with you. Fail."
• Review: "The Complete Peanuts 1977-1978 showcases an era when Schulz's drawing was still at its peak, and his story-making skills were perhaps greater than ever before — there are many long continuities, and Schulz had developed a pleasing knack of segueing from one storyline to another, in the vein of the great adventure strips of his youth." – Andrew Wheeler, The Antick Musings of G.B.H. Hornswoggler, Gent.
• Review: "In The Troublemakers, Hernandez plays with notions of trust and betrayal, naïveté and suspicion. [...] Ultimately, The Troublemakers is a con-movie in comic-book form, well aware of itself, and quite enjoyable in its context. [...] If it were a film, it would be a schlocky guilty pleasure; but in Hernandez’s hands, The Troublemakers ascends to become a stylized and quirky mindtrip, a mishmash of betrayals and surprises, with many more twists than you’ll see coming." – Michael C. Lorah, Newsarama
• Review: "Everything Burns draws seems molded from the same dark and shiny matter. [...] The climate of horror creeps in from the beginning of the narrative, but the author knows the exact time to surprise the reader. Violence is used in a measured way, unlike the majority of comics and films of the genre. Through works such as Skin Deep, Big Baby and Black Hole, Charles Burns is already regarded as one of the principal authors of horror comics of all time." – Gustavo Guimaraes, Ambrosia (translated from Portuguese)
It's also the last week to bid on Sub Pop founder Bruce Pavitt's private collection of pristine RAW magazines and the original Charles Burns drawing for Sub Pop #5 cassette zine — the direct predecessor to the legendary record label. The silent auction bid for this historic piece currently stands at $1,500. A bargain considering Microsoft billionaire Paul Allen's EMP museum paid over 3 times that amount 10 years ago for Burns' cover drawing of Sub Pop 200. To place a bid contact Fantagraphics curator Larry Reid at 206.658.0110 during store hours.
Get a jump on your holiday shopping this weekend. Our store's knowledgeable staff can suggest lovely and affordable gifts to suit any taste. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM. Sundays until 5:00.
Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is located at 1201 S. Vale Street in the heart of Seattle's lively Georgetown arts community. Open daily 11:30 - 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Holiday hours: Closed Thanksgiving Day, Christmas and New Years Day. Open until 4:00 PM on Christmas Eve. Phone 206.658.0110.