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Category >> Love and Rockets

Multiversity Interview with Eric Reynolds on Palomar Challenge
Written by Anna Pederson | Filed under Love and RocketslibraryGilbert HernandezEric Reynolds 11 Mar 2015 2:35 PM

palomar

The award-winning and timeless collection of Love and Rockets stories gathered into the gorgeous book, Palomar by Gilbert Hernandez, was published more than a decade ago. But controversy at a high school library in New Mexico has given new life into the continuing dicussion, and sometimes battle, that surrounds comics when they attempt to break new ground and tackle themes which require context and analysis. 

As Jen Vaughn pointed out in our original posting of the challenged book, one mother of a 14-year-old who had checked out the offending text from Rio Rancho High School library, took to the local TV station, KOAT, to report that she had found pages upon pages of "child pornography pictures and child abuse pictures". She demanded that there be an investigation to find out how the book was allowed into the library in the first place.

Since KOAT's initial "reporting" of the book's content, several outstanding organizations have come to its defense. The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, a First Amendment protection group, has teamed up with the Kids' Right to Read Project, and sent a letter to the Superintendent of Rio Rancho calling on the school to uphold it's own preported standards of procedure when it comes to a book's challenge. Additionally, the letter points out the obvious merits that the book carries within its pages, which have been lauded by numerous publications like The Times of London and Publisher's Weekly over the years for Hernandez's elastic realism approach to familial drama that immediately invokes comparison to writers such as Gabriel Garcia Marquez.  

pal panel 

Today, Greg Matiasevich at Multiversity posted an interview with Fantagraphics' Associate Publisher, Eric Reynolds, and CBLDF Executive Director, Charles Brownstein to get their reactions to Palomar being pulled from the shelves as it awaits a formal review from the school. When asked about why the removal of such a book is important, Reynolds replies:

"I don’t much care whether Palomar is in one particular library or not, but I do care about one rogue parent bypassing appropriate channels to remove it, instead escalating via a media that was all too enthusiastic in egregiously mischaracterizing the content of the work, fueling community outrage with flat-out falsehoods. It’s unproductive for everyone involved."

As Matiasevich points out, products based on comic books dominates our entertainment culture in the form of movies and TV shows, but too often the art form that these products were built off of is easily called out by those with little understanding of the medium itself, and shamefully erased from the hands of potential readers through public defamation. Brownstein and the CBLDF continue to take up these battles because "comics have a legitimate place in contemporary libraries and schools, but are more vulnerable to attack that other kinds of books because images are easier to take out of context and because there is still a diminishing, but lingering stigma that the medium is of low value." 

Numerous titles have proven that assumption wrong over the years, but it's important to remember no one deserves to have stories or art taken from their hands due to the opinion of one person. Palomar is awaiting its fate at the Rio Rancho High School library, and the CBLDF will be standing by to update on their final decision.

Beto is for children: much ado about nothing
Written by Jen Vaughn | Filed under Love and RocketslibraryGilbert Hernandez 27 Feb 2015 11:10 AM
Palomar
BANG-ZOOM! KA-BLOW! "Comics aren't for kids anymore!" is a phrase hundreds upon thousands of comic fans, cartoonists, scholars and publishers are tired of hearing. Yet at the local high school in Rio Rancho, New Mexico, one family was left devastated when one teen checked out Gilbert Hernandez's seminal work, PALOMAR, "thinking it was a manga." Thanks to local news team at KOAT 7 in Albuquerque, NM, you can see just how many bookmarks the mom carefully made in the book, cataloguing the disturbing images and the investigation that is now under way. Because the images are so "disturbing" and "graphic" they could not show you any images, even the 9,209,384 inoffensive panels in the book. So here they are (based on on my memory and some casual flipping through the book): Instructions on staying clean
Palomar 
Actual love between a couple looking forward to their child:
palomar 
A young girl, for once, taking pride in the fact her body is changing (and not because some guy said something nasty to her):
Carmen 
The HORROR! To be fair, there are some nude nudes in here of people in coitus that shouldn't necessarily be available in a K-12 library (which it wasn't) but the stories Gilbert Hernandez weaves are epic, layered, multi-generational, complicated---just like real life! 
Palomar
This really all raises the question: why go to the local news first? To create a hysteria around ONE book (see: Chicago, Persepolis) despite the hundreds of other books with devastating, often based-on-the-truth subject matter? If anything, the mom is teaching her kiddo some poor conflict resolution skills - don't attempt to resolve one-to-one, go immediately to the media! If Rio Rancho had a truly supportive community wouldn't the teen and mom go to the library and asked to have the book reassessed for the collection? Instead they are wasting time and money on an event that will end up cutting funding to local school libraries, which have already seen decreases in funding back to 2004 including when computers labs began moving to integrated classroom use (according to this 2004 Standards for New Mexico Libraries report, created by the New Mexico Task Force for Student Libraries). What will kids possibly do if they can't read books and comics at a higher reading-level than their grade? Turn to the internet in search of something worse? Nah, not these days. 
 
Caveat: I am not a parent, just a former library technician at a comic book library. 
New Digital Comic Releases
Written by Jen Vaughn | Filed under Peter BaggeNoah Van SciverLucy KnisleyLove and RocketsJoe DalyJaime HernandezGilbert Hernandezdigital comicsDame DarcycomiXology 11 Feb 2015 4:34 PM
Love and Rockets 7
Wednesday is not only New Comics Day in the stores but also new comics day online and on your favorite digital reading device. comiXology has a swank-and-huge list of titles that came out today! Love & Rockets: New Stories #7 finds Gilbert and Jaime Hernandez writing and drawing at the top of their game. In Jaime's stories, Maggie and Hopey take a road trip to visit a 'sick friend' while Ray visits some old sick friends of his own. Gilbert offers a suite of stories, including a sweeping epic of derring-do in which Fritz as Morgan Le Fey teams up with Aladdin; a WWII sci-fi thriller and 'Daughters and Mothers and Daughters,' in which flashbacks to Luba's mother Maria reveal how old secrets affect their family today. is $17.99 at comiXology and is also available on the Sequential app.
Sweatshop
Peter Bagge's Sweatshop is an intense situational comedy about a newspaper strip "sweatshop" of aspiring cartoonists who are attempting to make it big like their boss, Mel Bowling, but on their own terms. Featuring art also by Johnny Ryan, Jim Blanchard, Stephen Destefano, Stephanie Gladden and Matt Ray; Sweatshop is a must have for the Fantagraphics' fan and anyone who has had a terrible boss. Sweatshop is also available on the Sequential app. In addition you can get Hate 18, now out digitally. 

Displacement Saint Cole
In the sweet follow up to An Age of License, in Lucy Knisley's Displacement recounts the experience of caring for her frail grandparents aboard a cruise ship, while reflecting on her own fears on mortality, her age, and her family's relationships and history. Meanwhile, Noah Van Sciver's latest graphic novel, Saint Cole, is a brutal look into  in pathos and the human condition. It follows a dead-ender, Joe, over four days as his life goes from terrible to unraveling at every possible seam, from drinking on the job to a live-in girlfriend and crying baby at home. You can also find both of these titles on the Sequential app.  Dungeon Quest  Meat cake
More serial comics please! 
Serialized from the pages of Dungeon Quest Book Three #8 by Joe Daly, we join Millenium Boy, Millenium Boy, Steve, Nerd Girl and Lash Penis mid-adventure. A series of beasts called Womraxes attack the group, ripping off clothes right and left. (and only $1.99 per issue!).
 
In Dame Darcy's Meat Cake #15, Richard Dirt and Friend the Girl show you exactly how to pass the Zombie Survival Test before Dame Darcy takes a trip around the world gathering local lore like the Chupacabre of Texas and the Science Un-Fair. Plus, get your munch on with her finest raw food recipes! It's one of the best one hundred and ninety-nine penny dreadfuls you can get!
 
Bagge's HATE #18 has the Bradley home in Jersey is bursting at the seams with little birdies who tried out their wings, landed in a bloody heap on the ground, and limped back into the nest. The newest re-addition to the family unit: Butch. Buddy's errant little brother is discharged from the Navy, due in large part to his chronic alcoholism, and he heads straight for the nearest port - home sweet home. His constant belligerent presence makes life even more difficult for Buddy and Lisa, who are having a hard enough time of it as it is. Needless to say, things wind up coming to an ugly head between Buddy and Butch, and nothing is resolved as a result, since such is the nature of adult siblings. Now and forever, in full and glorious FantacolorTM from cover to cover!
Hate 18


Now in Stock - Love and Rockets: New Stories #7 by Los Bros Hernandez
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under new releasesLove and RocketsLos Bros HernandezJaime HernandezGilbert Hernandez 30 Jan 2015 1:00 PM

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

Love and Rockets: New Stories #7 by Los Bros Hernandez - Cover

Love and Rockets: New Stories #7
by Los Bros Hernandez

100-page black & white 7.25" x 10.5" softcover
$14.99 | 978-1-60699-770-3

See Previews / Order Now

The seventh annual volume of Love and Rockets: New Stories, the most important and enduring alternative comics series in the history of the medium, finds Gilbert and Jaime Hernandez writing and drawing at the top of their game. In Jaime's stories, Maggie and Hopey take a road trip and much-needed break from their humdrum domestic lives and travel to visit a "sick friend." And, when the cat's away, Ray visits some old sick friends of his own. Plus Tonta's nutty family! Gilbert offers a veritable suite of stories, including "The Magic Voyage of Aladdin," a sweeping epic of derring-do in which Morgan Le Fey (Fritz) teams up with Aladdin to stop the evil Circle from obtaining the magic lamp; "The Golem Suit," a WWII sci-fi thriller starring "Killer"; and "Daughters and Mothers and Daughters," in which flashbacks to Luba's mother Maria reveal how ugly secrets of the past affect their family today.

Now in Stock - Love and Rockets Library (Palomar & Luba Book 5): Ofelia by Gilbert Hernandez
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under new releasesLove and RocketsGilbert Hernandez 26 Jan 2015 4:15 PM

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

Love and Rockets (Palomar & Luba Book 5): Ofelia by Gilbert Hernandez - Cover

Love and Rockets Library (Palomar & Luba Book 5): Ofelia
by Gilbert Hernandez

256-page black & white 7.25" x 10.25" softcover
$19.99 | 978-1-60699-806-9

See Previews / Order Now

In Ofelia, the sisters, the kids, and the cousins are all settled comfortably in California after leaving Palomar in Luba and Her Family. Luba and her cousin Ofelia’s relationship has always been fraught, but when Ofelia threatens to write a book about Luba, past memories, secrets, resentments, and pain resurface. Meanwhile, Luba’s children—genius Socorro, recently out-and-proud Doralís, and prickly Maricela—show that a talent for trouble may be hereditary. Luba’s sisters, Fritz and Petra, swap lovers (as usual), but…are Fritz and family friend Pipo sittin’ in a tree? These vividly drawn characters are charged with Hernandez’s trademark complexity; they live, love, age, fight— and die—in this sweeping, multigenerational saga.

January Book-A-Day Sale: Locas II
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under sales specialsLove and RocketsJaime Hernandez 22 Jan 2015 3:00 AM

Locas II: Maggie, Hopey & Ray by Jaime Hernandez - CoverToday's Book-A-Day Sale features Eisner award-winning artist Jaime Hernandez in an omnibus collection of stories featuring his main characters, Maggie, Hopey, and Ray. Locas II picks up shortly after Maggie and Hopey’s long-awaited reunion at the end of the first Locas.

Even though her love life remains as chaotic as ever, Hopey takes her first few steps toward responsible adulthood with a real job (as a teacher), while a demoralized, divorced Maggie ends up as the manager of a fleabag apartment building where she continues to wrestle with the demons of her past — most prominently in the stunning centerpiece of the volume, the graphic-novel-length “Maggie” serial, with its stunning, hallucinatory dream finale.

Meanwhile, Ray still carries a major torch for Maggie, but falls in with the “Frogmouth,” the volatile bombshell whose ties to local thugs cause him no small amount of grief.

Of course, Maggie, Hopey, and Ray’s paths continue to intersect in Hernandez’s increasingly complex, intricate, and always vitally realized world.

For today only, pick up a copy of this book, called a "landmark in comics literature" by Publishers Weekly, for 40% off!

Love and Rockets: New Stories #7 by Los Bros Hernandez - Photoset Preview
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under previewsnew releasesLove and RocketsLos Bros HernandezJaime HernandezGilbert Hernandez 19 Dec 2014 10:00 AM

Praise for the Series:

"In the 30 years they’ve been writing and drawing Love and Rockets, Los Bros Hernandez have created wonderfully complex story lines and characters… This web of superior magical-realistic storytelling involves readers in the perplexed yearnings of a huge cast of unforgettable characters unaware of their own capacity for general self-delusion and occasional self-discovery." – Publishers Weekly

"Los Bros. are plain-spoken and sympathetic, finding pathos in even the grimiest character." – Sam Thielman, Newsday

"There are acclaimed filmmakers and novelists who can’t do what Jaime Hernandez does — or Gilbert, for that matter. When the two of them are at their most inspired, as they are here, they make almost every other comics creator today look like a fumbling hack. [Grade] A" – The A.V. Club

Love and Rockets: New Stories #7
by Los Bros Hernandez

100-page black & white 7.25" x 10.5" softcover
$14.99 | 978-1-60699-770-3

Due to arrive in 2-4 weeks. Click on thumbnails for larger versions; get more info, see more previews, and pre-order your copy here:

http://www.fantagraphics.com/lrnewstories7

Love and Rockets Library (Palomar & Luba Book 5): Ofelia by Gilbert Hernandez - Photoset Preview
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under previewsnew releasesLove and RocketsGilbert Hernandez 8 Dec 2014 10:00 AM

"Gilbert Hernandez created some of the most memorable characters in popular fiction." – Los Angeles Magazine

"There's no denying that Beto's comics reflect one of the highest peaks the comics medium has yet achieved." – The A.V. Club

"To lovers of alternative comics, Hernandez is something of a saint…" – The Telegraph

"In a real world, not the screwed-up world we have now, [Gilbert Hernandez] would be considered one of the greatest American storytellers. It's so hard to do funny, tragic, local and epic, and he does all simultaneously, and with great aplomb." – Junot Diaz

Love and Rockets Library (Palomar & Luba Book 5): Ofelia
by Gilbert Hernandez

256-page black & white 7.25” x 10.25” softcover • $19.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-806-9

Due to arrive in 2-4 weeks. Click on thumbnails for larger versions; get more info, see more previews, and pre-order your copy here:

http://www.fantagraphics.com/ofelia

Love and Rockets: New Stories #7 by Los Bros Hernandez - Video/Photo Slideshow
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under previewsLove and RocketsLos Bros HernandezJaime HernandezGilbert Hernandez 8 Dec 2014 7:30 AM

Love and Rockets: New Stories #7
by Los Bros Hernandez

100-page black & white 7.25" x 10.5" softcover • $14.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-770-3

Ships in: January 2015 (subject to change) — Pre-Order Now

The seventh annual volume of Love and Rockets: New Stories, the most important and enduring alternative comics series in the history of the medium, finds Gilbert and Jaime Hernandez writing and drawing at the top of their game. In Jaime's stories, Maggie and Hopey take a road trip and much-needed break from their humdrum domestic lives and travel to visit a "sick friend." And, when the cat's away, Ray visits some old sick friends of his own. Plus Tonta's nutty family! Gilbert offers a veritable suite of stories, including "The Magic Voyage of Aladdin," a sweeping epic of derring-do in which Morgan Le Fey (Fritz) teams up with Aladdin to stop the evil Circle from obtaining the magic lamp; "The Golem Suit," a WWII sci-fi thriller starring "Killer"; and "Daughters and Mothers and Daughters," in which flashbacks to Luba's mother Maria reveal how ugly secrets of the past affect their family today.

View Video & Photo Slideshow in New Window



Love and Rockets: New Stories #7 by Los Bros Hernandez - First Look
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under previewsLove and RocketsLos Bros HernandezJaime HernandezGilbert Hernandez 2 Dec 2014 3:40 PM

Love and Rockets: New Stories #7 by Los Bros Hernandez - Cover

Love and Rockets: New Stories #7 by Los Bros Hernandez - Inside Page

This Tuesday afternoon, we've got our heads burrowed in our advance copies of Love and Rockets: New Stories #7. From the magical adventures of Aladdin to a Maggie and Hopey reunion, this is a hundred sweet pages packed with Beto and Jaime goodness.

New Stories #7 arrives January 2015. Get ahead of the game by pre-ordering your copy now!

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