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Peanuts Every Sunday: 1956-1960 (Vol. 2)
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Category >> Megan Kelso

Megan Kelso at the Richard Hugo House This Friday
Written by janice headley | Filed under Megan Kelsoevents 24 Oct 2011 11:13 AM

The Haves and the Have Nots with Megan Kelso

Does having it all ever equal happiness?

That is the question that Fantagraphics artist Megan Kelso will be addressing this Friday, October 28th at the Richard Hugo House in Seattle.

It's the first of four Hugo Literary Series evenings, with Megan joined by National Book Award-winning novelist and philosopher Charles Johnson, and queer spoken word luminary Tara Hardy, with music presented by David Nixon from the band "Awesome."

Together, they'll be exploring the theme of "The Haves and the Have Nots," and you can join them starting at 7:30 PM at the Richard Hugo House [ 1634 11th Avenue, Seattle ]. Both series passes and individual tickets are available.

Megan Kelso & Paul Hornschemeier art for Dylan Williams
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Paul HornschemeierOriginal ArtMegan Kelsogood deeds 4 Oct 2011 12:49 AM

My Little Piece of Kurt - Megan Kelso

Two more great pieces of artwork up now in the benefit auctions for the family of Dylan Williams & Sparkplug Comic Books: above, Megan Kelso's one-page story about Nirvana, "My Little Piece of Kurt," from 1994 (as recently seen in the Quiet Rrriot exhibit at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery); below, an original page from Paul Hornschemeier's Life with Mr. Dangerous, as seen in Mome Vol. 17. Click each image to go to the respective eBay auctions, and see additional contributions at The Divine Invasion and Profanity Hill.

Life with Mr. Dangerous original art - Paul Hornschemeier

Things to See: Ian Burns's Animal sketchbook
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Things to seestaffPeter BaggeMegan KelsoJohnny RyanJim WoodringJim RuggGilbert HernandezGahan Wilson 20 Sep 2011 3:16 AM

Our own Ian Burns has joined me in the exclusive "Theme Sketchbook of Frank Oz Puppet Characters Club" with his own super-impressive book of Animal from The Muppet Show (my personal second-favorite member of The Electric Mayhem, after Zoot), which is giving my Yoda collection a serious run for its money. Here are some Fantagraphics-relevant entries as posted by Ian on the Versus the Moon blog (where he posts 2 new ones a week, so keep checking back):

Animal - Gahan Wilson
Gahan Wilson

Animal - Gilbert Hernandez
Gilbert Hernandez

Animal - Jim Rugg
Jim Rugg

Animal - Johnny Ryan
Johnny Ryan

Animal - Peter Bagge
Peter Bagge

Animal - Jim Woodring
Jim Woodring

Animal - Megan Kelso
Megan Kelso






Megan Kelso up for Artist Trust Arts Innovators Award
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Megan Kelsoawards 19 Sep 2011 4:25 PM

Megan Kelso signing at the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery

Washington State-based arts foundation Artist Trust has announced the shortlist of finalists for its 2011 Arts Innovator Award, including Queen of the Black Black and Artichoke Tales creator Megan Kelso! The award consists of a nice fat cash prize (and two other finalists get smaller cash amounts) out of the deep, deep Dale Chihuly coffers. This would certainly be a huge boon to Megan as she works on her next book. Recipients are announced next week. Good luck Megan!

Daily OCD: 8/29/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Warren BernardWalt KellyThe Comics JournalspainShimura TakakoRick MarschallreviewsPeanutsMegan KelsoMarschall BooksmangaJim WoodringDave McKeanDaily OCDCharles M SchulzCharles BurnsBob FingermanBill GriffithBest of 2010 29 Aug 2011 8:03 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Artichoke Tales [Pre-Order]

List: At his High-Low blog Rob Clough posts his belated Top 50 Books of 2010 list, with Megan Kelso's Artichoke Tales at #1, 4 of our books in the top 5, 5 in the top 10, 8 in the top 20, and 14 overall in the top 50 — it's a long but worthwhile read

Congress of the Animals

Review: "Calling Congress of the Animals recommended reading is a bit misleading. It’s definitely recommended, but it doesn’t technically involve reading. The entire book doesn’t feature a single word bubble. The only words are on the book jacket. What this is is a story told entirely through pictures — delightful pictures at that.... This was really an entertaining book. It was visually different from anything I’ve ever seen in a comic, the story was unique, and some parts were laugh out loud funny..." – Corey Pung, Panel Discussions (via Americaware)

Skin Deep [Softcover Ed. - with FREE Signed Bookplate]

Review: "...Skin Deep by Charles Burns... [is a] true masterpiece in which Burns returns to choose the mechanisms and the language of grade-B horror films, crime fiction, pulp, the aesthetics of the 50's and Robert Crumb's comics to make a harsh social criticism.... Stories in which Burns continues to explore the darkest corners of the human condition while keeping us on edge vignette to vignette." – Jesús Jiménez, Radio y Televisión Española (translated from Spanish)

Beg the Question

Review: "...[T]he adventures of a group of twenty-something New York residents, like Friends but with ethnic variation and far more realistic apartments, and, you know, actual problems. The characters of Beg the Question are surrounded by ugliness and idiocy in one of the most complicated cities in the world, yet they are decent human beings who support each other. It’s not supposed to be autobiographical, but you can tell that Fingerman has lived through many of the situations and knows the characters well." – Grant Buist, The Name of This Cartoon Is Brunswick

The Complete Peanuts 1981-1982 (Vol. 16)

Commentary: "So I just finished reading Fantagraphics’ The Complete Peanuts 1981-1982, and... the vast majority of this book was new to me, having not read previous reprintings of the strips from this period (as opposed to the near-memorization of the reprint books from the late ’70s and earlier). One of the great new features of this particular reprint series, aside from, y’know, the whole completeness of the strips reprints and all, is the index in each volume." – Mike Sterling, Mike Sterling's Progressive Ruin

Pogo - Vol. 1 of the Complete Syndicated Comic Strips: Through the Wild Blue Wonder

Plug: "Walt Kelly’s Pogo is one of the greatest comic strips I’ve ever read. It’s simply brilliant; quaint and sweet on the surface but deeper readings reveals layers of very smart political and social satire. And as you can clearly see, Walt Kelly’s artwork is magnificent.... Fantagraphics are presenting the entire strip, including the beautiful full colour Sunday strips for the very first time, in a series of 12 hardcover volumes that reprint approximately 2 years worth of  material at a time. I guarantee that if you get Volume 1, you’ll be signing up for the remaining 11." – Richard Cowdry, The Forbidden Planet International Blog Log

The Comics Journal #301

Plugs: Librairie Drawn & Quarterly in Montreal just got in a bunch of our recent releases (The Comics Journal #301, Drawing Power, Celluloid and Wandering Son Vol. 1) and their Chantale wrote up nice little plugs for them all on their 211 Bernard blog

Bill Griffith

Profile: At The Comics Journal, R.C. Harvey presents an updated version of a 1994 profile of Bill Griffith originally done for Cartoonist PROfiles

Nightmare Alley

Analysis: At comiXology, Columbia University librarian Karen Green does a detailed comparison of William Lindsay Gresham's 1946 novel Nightmare Alley, the 1947 film version, and the 2003 graphic novel adaptation by Spain Rodriguez

Daily OCD: 8/3/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Robert CrumbreviewsPeter BaggePeanutsMickey MouseMegan KelsoLove and RocketsLos Bros HernandezJoyce FarmerFloyd GottfredsonDisneyDaily OCDCharles M Schulz 4 Aug 2011 12:56 AM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Queen of the Black Black

Review: "The harmony of words and illustration strengthen Kelso’s voice as a narrator of stories that appeal to women of all ages.... This collection of short stories is a fantastic starting point for those of you who still view comics as Marvel/DC, or as ‘kiddie’ entertainment. (Shame!!) While playing with fantasy elements we all loved reading as little kids, Kelso incorporates today’s real life issues — STDs, pregnancy, being broke, infidelity — into her comics. Raw, yet refined, Queen of the Black Black is an enjoyable, meaty read that left me pumped to experiment with my own comics style." – Erina Davidson, Bust

Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 1: Race to Death Valley

Review: "The book itself is stunning.... Fantagraphics is well-known for their quality book projects and this may be one of their best yet.... The Mickey Mouse strip itself is a hoot — especially in these early days. Mickey’s a feisty little guy in the strips, more so than in most of his animated appearances. He frequently packs heat (gasp!), knows all kinds of dirty tricks, and isn’t afraid to get into some real fisticuffs.... Even if you don’t care much for Mickey or the whole Disney mouse machine, this book should be on your bookshelf just for the slice of 1930s Depression-era Americana and the amazing joy of Mickey’s flinty 'can-do' attitude.... Watch for this wonderful series to do very well in various comics awards next year. This is important stuff." – K.C. Carlson, Comics Worth Reading

The Complete Peanuts 1979-1980 (Vol. 15)

Review: "There's still an agreeable edge to the series at this point [The Complete Peanuts 1979-1980] — Peppermint Patty's resigned acceptance to a life of D-minuses is really kind of savage — but Charles Schulz was relaxed enough to enjoy a few in-jokes and celebrity shout-outs to the likes of Bill Mauldin and various tennis stars.... Each time that Schulz started one of his longer, weirder stories..., readers will find themselves wondering how in the world he resolved it. He succeeded every single time." – Grant Goggans, The Hipster Dad's Bookshelf (via Spurge)

The Complete Crumb Comics Vol. 13

Review: "Like crisps, chocolate and bad puns; once you get the taste of Robert Crumb on your palate, it’s almost impossible to shift the craving for more. Here’s another re-released edition [Vol. 13] from the superb and multi-award winning Complete Crumb Comics series that will tickle the bad-taste-buds of discerning comics cognoscenti and is bound to make a whole new generation of fans among the cool kids..." – Win Wiacek, Now Read This!

Love and Rockets: New Stories #4

Scene/Plug: Comic Book Resources' Sonia Harris shares a charming Hernandez Bros. anecdote from Comic-Con and plugs the new Love and Rockets: "I won’t spoil it for you, but I can tell you that it is even better than the 3 that have come before it (and they were fantastic.) Seriously, Love and Rockets is just getting better and better."

Buddy Does Seattle (The Complete Buddy Bradley Book 1)

Plug: At The Truth About Cars, Murilee Martin pauses during an epic story about a 1965 Chevy Impala to note, "It was about this time that I became completely addicted to Peter Bagge’s brilliant Hate Comics, which seemed to capture the sense of diminished expectations and ironically-waiting-for-the-apocalypse mindset of my alleged generation a lot better than did Douglas Coupland with his much-hyped-by-mainstream-media novel Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture (note: not that I have anything against Coupland; I’ve since become a serious fan of his work and recommend his novels without reservation). I suggest that you head over to Fantagraphics and buy everything published by Mr. Bagge immediately, pausing only to read his excellent editorial cartoons at Reason." (All links from the original article.)

Special Exits

Panel (Video): The Comics Journal posts video of the "Art of the Graphic Novel" panel at Comic-Con 2011, with Joyce Farmer among the all-star panelists

The Quiet Rrriot Redux
Written by janice headley | Filed under videoMegan KelsoFantagraphics Bookstoreevents 1 Aug 2011 11:13 AM

The Quiet Rrriot installation at the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery

Last month, the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery opened our latest exhibit, The Quiet Rrriot: Visual Artists from the Riot Grrrl movement by Megan Kelso, Nikki McClure, Stella Marrs, and the response has been really amazing!

For those of us who live in Seattle, the exhibit will be up for one more month, ending on August 31st.  But for those of you not in the area, here are some pics from our opening night, with artists Megan Kelso and Nikki McClure in attendance!

Megan Kelso signing at the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery

Here's Megan signing copies of her latest release Queen of the Black Black, a collection of work from her influential self-published comix zine, Girlhero. I know I won't shut up about how great this book is, but seriously, it rules. It may have been borne from the 90's Riot Grrrl scene, but the stories inside are timeless.

And at the register, you may recognize Russ Battaglia from the legendary-but-now-defunct Fallout Records!  When I was going through Megan's zine collection, I'd keep seeing Fallout ads in the backs of zines, usually illustrated by Peter Bagge!

Zine collection on display at the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery

And here's a display of Megan's aforementioned zine collection!  We've got detail shots over at the Fantgraphics Flickr page, and if you've got any interest in the history of Riot Grrl zines, you'll definitely want to check it out.

Nikki McClure at the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery

We were honored to be joined by artist Nikki McClure, who made the trip from Olympia for the day. (That's her, center, in the white shirt, talking with friends and fans.)

She and Megan sat down for an inspiring and educational discussion of the DIY scene in Olympia, and how the Riot Grrrl scene helped propel their own creative projects. You can now watch the entire discussion below (or on YouTube here)! (Apologies in advance for the sound quality.)

Check out more photos of the exhibit and opening night at the Fantagraphics Flickr, and come by the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery before August 31st to see the original artwork, zines, and comix in person!

Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery
1201 S. Vale Street (at Airport Way S.)
Seattle, WA 98108
206.658.0110
Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM



Daily OCD: 7/28/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under ZapreviewsMegan KelsoLove and RocketsJules FeifferJohnny RyanJim WoodringJaime HernandezGilbert HernandezEC ComicsDaily OCDaudio 28 Jul 2011 6:03 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Congress of the Animals

Review: "...I’ll admit it: I did not expect to read a Frank book whose final panel made me go 'Awwww!' ...[T]he journey [in Congress of the Animals] takes Frank so far afield that at some point (probably when he gets lost at sea and washes up on some distant shore) he ends up outside the Unifactor’s confines. New information can now enter his world... And at that point all hell breaks loose…which in a Frank comic is to say it doesn’t break loose at all." – Sean T. Collins, Attentiondeficitdisorderly

Review: "I don't think I'll ever stop marveling at the amazing artwork [Woodring] fills his books with. It contains some of the most solid and tangible representations of fantastical objects and events I've ever seen, along with a deeply unsettling atmosphere, something that either creeps me out or turns my stomach to look at it. There's something about the plantlike growths on animal creatures, the gaping orifices, and the plentiful eyeballs that, while obviously unnatural, goes a step further into a visceral gut-punch, somehow keying into a subconscious urge to look away. This aspect of the work has been present in other Frank stories I've seen, but Woodring seems to crank it up to near-unbearable levels [in Congress of the Animals]..." – Matthew J. Brady, Warren Peace Sings the Blues

Explainers: The Complete Village Voice Strips (1956-66) [2nd Ed.]

Review: "I recently read the first volume of Jules Feiffer's collected Village Voice comic strips [Explainers], from the 1950s and early 1960s. Reading ten years' worth of weekly strips in a few days probably wasn't the best idea, but I was still amazed at how well Feiffer's early work has aged. Not just the stuff about relationships, but the stuff about politics still works. I guess that's not surprising, since relationships and politics haven't changed much in fifty years." – This Is So Gay

Love and Rockets: New Stories #4

Scene: Comic Book Resources' Sonia Harris recaps the Love and Rockets anniversary panel at Comic-Con, and in plugging the article (and commenting on Gilbert's revelations) at CBR's Robot 6 Sean T. Collins calls it "pure L&R-nerd heaven for a whole bunch of reasons," which is 100% accurate

Prison Pit

Scene: Corey Blake gives a first-person account of Cannibal Fuckface's appearance at our Comic-Con booth during Johnny Ryan's Prison Pit signing

Queen of the Black Black

Interview: Bust Magazine's Erina Davidson has a Q&A session with Megan Kelso: "I try not  to fall into the trap of thinking something is interesting simply because 'it happened to ME.' Personal memories and experiences are wonderful catalysts, and I think essential to making work seem believable and relatable, but they are rarely enough. One needs also to do some embroidery."

EC Comics logo

Interview (Audio): Our Associate Publisher Eric Reynolds appeared on Ed Wenck's program on Indianapolis news radio station WIBC to talk about our forthcoming EC Comics and ZAP Comix reprint projects — listen to the segment here

Daily OCD: 7/27/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Willie and JoeSteve DuinShimura TakakoShannon WheelerreviewsRaymond MacherotPeanutsOil and WaterMomeMegan KelsomangaLove and RocketsKevin Huizengajohn kerschbaumJaime HernandezDaily OCDCharles M SchulzCarol TylerBill Mauldin 27 Jul 2011 11:38 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Sibyl-Anne Vs. Ratticus

Review: "Macherot’s animals are cute and full of character, from the porcupine sheriff to the cigar-smoking, shop-keeping bird. Visually they resemble Walt Kelly’s Pogo, with backgrounds that will look familiar to anybody who ever watched The Smurfs cartoon.... There might be more slapstick than the average post-elementary school reader can appreciate, but the adorable art, amiable characters, and a thrilling late-story air battle will keep you interested until the end. Best of all are the brief glimpses at domestic country mouse mundanity, like Sibyl-Anne’s love for baking pies and the aside where she and Boomer talk about how nice a certain table and its parasol are." – Garrett Martin, Paste

Wandering Son Vol. 1

Review: "This series [Wandering Son] is beautiful, perfectly capturing that time at the age of 10 or 11 where naivety and confusion meet in the formative years of your young identity. Where androgyny is a fine thing, defined by its ambiguity and as distinct as any sex." – Tom Rosin, Page 45

Willie & Joe: The WWII Years

Review: "The Willie and Joe cartoons and characters are some of the most enduring and honest symbols of all military history.... Alternating trenchant cynicism, moral outrage, gallows humour, absurdist observation, shared miseries, staggering sentimentality and the total shock and awe of still being alive every morning, this cartoon catalogue of the Last Just War [Willie & Joe: The WWII Years] is a truly breathtaking collection that no fan, art-lover, historian or humanitarian can afford to miss. …And it will make you cry and laugh out loud too." – Win Wiacek, Now Read This!

Willie & Joe: Back Home

Review: "...[Willie & Joe: Back Home] features some of the most powerful assaults on the appalling edifice of post-war America ever seen. The artist’s castigating observations on how a society treats returning soldiers are as pertinent now as they ever were; the pressures on families and children even more so; whilst his exposure of armchair strategists, politicians and businessmen seeking to exploit wars for gain and how quickly allies can become enemies are tragically more relevant than any rational person could wish. ...[W]e have here a magnificent example of passion and creativity used as a weapon of social change and a work of art every citizen should be exposed to, because these are aspects of humanity that we seem unable to outgrow." – Win Wiacek, Now Read This!

You'll Never Know Book 2: Collateral Damage [Pre-Order]

Review: "Visually, Tyler's style is unique in the comics world.... The scrapbook design of [You'll Never Know, Book 2: Collateral Damage] is just one of many remarkable decorative touches she adds. Color is tremendously important both in a narrative sense (identifying key times and characters) and an emotional sense (modulating feelings felt on a page in an expressive style). The complexity of her page design (changing formats on an almost page-to-page basis) is brought to earth by the simplicity of her character design. The result is what feels like an ornate, powerful and cohesive sketchbook/journal.... Most impressively, Tyler manages to bring a static kind of craft (a sketchbook) to life with panels that crackle with energy and movement. There are no easy outs or answers in Tyler's attempts to create, maintain and understand connections with her loved ones..." – Rob Clough, High-Low

Love and Rockets Library (Locas Book 2): The Girl from H.O.P.P.E.R.S.

Essay: The Comics Reporter's Tom Spurgeon on Jaime Hernandez's The Death of Speedy, written for Team Cul de Sac's Favorites zine: "Hernandez's evocation of that fragile period between school and adulthood, that extended moment where every single lustful entanglement, unwise friendship, afternoon spent drinking outside, nighttime spent cruising are acts of life-affirming rebellion, is as lovely and generous and kind as anything ever depicted in the comics form."

The Complete Peanuts 1950-1952 (Vol. 1) [NORTH AMERICA ONLY]

Commentary: "It could be seen as frustrating that I've still got five years to wait to complete the Peanuts collection, ...but in some ways it's nice. If they came out more quickly, there would be more of a feeling of urgency about ploughing through the strips, whereas I'm able to take a more leisurely approach, reading bits here and there. After all, they were only really meant to be read once a day. I don't buy many books these days, preferring to download them to my Kindle, but these books are definitely going to be a part of my life for as long as they'll last (or as long as I'll last, whichever comes first) and I do look forward to seeing 50 years of Schulz magic lined up on my shelves. I just need to work out where I'll put them all... Such is the life of a completist!" – James Ellaby, Lullabies from a Giant Golden Radio

Ganges #2

Analysis: At Robot 6, Matt Seneca examines a page from Ganges #2: "Kevin Huizenga is one of the cartoonists whose work addresses comics’ conflict between the abstract and the literal most frequently and interestingly.  Huizenga’s attempts at using comics to mimic the visual effect of video games are especially notable: rather than creating the simulacrum of reality that the vast majority of comics do, what is brought forth instead is a simulacrum of a simulacrum, a copy of a copy, something already abstract abstracted further, its ties to reality stressed and stretched about as close to the breaking point as they can go."

Mome Vol. 22

Interview: The Daily Cross Hatch's Brian Heater wraps up his 4-part conversation with Mome editor Eric Reynolds: "I think Mome actually got better as I actively stopped worrying about who the readership might be, and actively indulged my own interests.... I think that began to happen as early as the fifth or sixth issue. And I think, by the end of it — you can point to a lot of things that we probably would have leaned against publishing at the beginning."

Queen of the Black Black

Profiles: Following the news that the Xeric Foundation is discontinuing its publishing grants, the writers of Robot 6 spotlight some of their favorite past grant recipients, including Megan Kelso and John Kerschbaum

Oil & Water by Steve Duin & Shannon Wheeler

Awards: The Oregonian's Steve Duin congratulates his Oil & Water collaborator Shannon Wheeler on Wheeler's Eisner Award win last weekend

Daily OCD Extra: Publishers Weekly July reviews
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Willie and JoereviewsMegan KelsoJasonDave McKeanDaily OCDBill Mauldin 19 Jul 2011 2:38 AM

Publishers Weekly just posted their comics reviews for July and we thought they'd make a nice post all on their own. Excerpts follow:

Celluloid [Pre-Order]

Celluloid by Dave McKean: "McKean’s ability to master many artistic styles and use them to present an ever-changing surreal visual narrative is on full display.... The work has a dreamlike quality throughout, sometimes confusing, sometimes nightmarish, sometimes bizarre, as shapes and people meld and twist into one another. Nothing is ever really explained or resolved, putting the burden on reader to take their own meaning away from the night’s events."

Queen of the Black Black

Queen of the Black Black by Megan Kelso: "This long-out-of-print collection of short stories by Kelso is an intriguing and evocative look into her early work, quiet little tales filled with realistic emotion and more than a little narrative ambiguity.... Kelso’s art is simple and somewhat 'cartoony,' but the style meshes perfectly with the book’s thoughtful narrative qualities. Kelso’s strength is a gentle understanding of the various undercurrents of longing and memory that motivate us, and these stories show that in abundance."

Isle of 100,000 Graves

Isle of 100,000 Graves by Jason & Fabien Vehlmann: "Jason and Vehlmann’s story of a young girl seeking the help of pirates to track down her lost father mixes elements of grim family drama with light and dark comedy to create an engrossing story that keeps readers surprised with sudden twists in both plot and mood.... Jason’s characteristic style of animal people with minimal expressions conveys a surprisingly wide array of emotions, even when one wears a hangman’s hood showing only eye holes and a thin mouth. Short and yet complex, it’s a strong story with unexpected laughs."

Willie & Joe: Back Home

Willie & Joe: Back Home by Bill Mauldin: "This time capsule is the second collection of Mauldin’s cartoons from Fantagraphics, this time covering the post-World War II period of 1945-1946.... The linework and chiaroscuro are amazing... Editor Todd DePastino’s introduction, covering key events in Mauldin’s life during the creation of these cartoons, is essential to comprehending some of the content, but other cartoons — such as those featuring forgotten veterans, lying politicians, or creeping consumerism—are universal."