Lee: A strong mix of old and new material this month but I can’t help but feel that we’re in a holding period because Christmas is right around the corner. I know that’s hard to accept when it’s over 100 degrees outside but these are September previews. Hopefully it will be cooler in September.
Jim: Looking ahead at Lee's picks for this month we are starting off with a lot of animals. Not sure what that means, but it is better then his bathroom obsession.
Art of Jaime Hernandez: Secrets of Life & Death HC by (W) Todd Hignite (A) Jaime Hernandez
In 1981, three Mexican-American brothers self-published their first comic book, Love and Rockets, and changed American cartooning forever according to Publishers Weekly. Over 26 years later it is still being published to critical and commercial success. Jaime Hernandez's moving stories chronicle the lives of some of the most memorable and fully formed characters the comics world has ever seen. His female protagonists, masterfully delineated with humor, candor, and breathtaking realism, come to life within California's Mexican-American culture and punk milieu. The notoriously private artist has opened his archives for the first time, revealing never-before-seen sketches, childhood drawings, and unpublished work, alongside his most famous Love and Rockets material, much of it photographed in color from the original art. Available Again, Not a New Release $40.00
Lee: This isn’t a new release but I’m still interested by it. Hernandez has been an influential artist and writer for 26 years and this is a perfect way to get to know him. If you’re interested in the people who make comics then this is a must have.
Jim: An art book by an artist whose work while very good has never appealed to me. An easy pass.
Duncan the Wonder Dog Vol. 01: Show One SC by (W/A) Adam Hines
What if animals could talk? Would some of them form a militant group in reaction to how humans treat them? Would humans treat them differently? Come explore this dense tome of an alternate universe where the lavish renderings recall the work of Dave McKean. Duncan the Wonder Dog will be one of the most talked about books of 2010! 400 pages, 8.5" x 11" SC $24.95. Download the 38 pages preview here.
Lee: Let’s start with the obvious, this book is HUGE. A full size book clocking in at 400 pages. We’re talking ‘From Hell’ size territory here. Yowza! I strongly recommend checking out the preview because I can’t describe the book. It’s part art book, it’s part story, it’s definitely good.
Jim: The bang for the book is there and it certainly has potential. I'm always looking for something new and this book looks like it is worth checking out.
Allen & Unwin
Tango Collection: Talent from Australia New Zealand by (W/A) Various
The perfect introduction for anyone curious about this exciting and versatile storytelling medium, this is a vibrant showcase of the most creative comic book talent in Australia and New Zealand, with more than 50 contributors including Nicki Greenberg, Andrew Weldon, Bruce Mutard, Mandy Ord, Gordon Reece, and many more. Collecting more than 60 stories, this quirky, experimental, and fun collection is a feast for the senses, a celebration of love in all its guises, and an introduction to a new breed of writer. Foreword by comics guru, Dylan Horrocks. 248 pgs. $26.95 Visit the site official site here and there’s a 20 or so page preview here. (click google preview to see it).
Lee: Amazing, this is just reaching American shores now after it was originally released in December 09. I’ve never seen art from Down Under but I picked this because I’ve enjoyed the Swedish/Norwegian anthologies from Top Shelf. And even though I was interested this is a heavy month for me with Marvel/IDW hc’s so I was thinking no, but after looking at the previews I’m thinking yes.
Jim: I'm not sure why a different locale makes any difference in what the art looks like. Even with a future son-in-law being from New Zealand I'm not compelled to pick this up.
Alterna Comics Inc
Unlikely Trio: Last Barn on the Left One-Shot by (W) Scott & Callie West (A) Scott West
LilBit the mouse, Mrs. Butters the cat, and Abby the Collie dog join together to confront a scary monster that lives in the barn of their small town. Can the three friends overcome their fears and get through this adventure? Kids can be the colorist in this black and white adventure that features fun activities in the back of the book. Alterna will be donating all proceeds to the ASPCA foundation to help protect animals in need! $3.95 A 17 page preview here.
Lee: Dammit the last thing I need is a guilt trip book that helps a good cause. Both the story and art looked good so for $4, I’ll help the cause.
Jim: Not me.
Anthology Project Vol. 01 HC by (W/A) Various (C) Joy Ang
The Anthology Project collects the comics of artists unified by their delirious pursuit of compelling narrative and notable artistic work in the medium of sequential art. Its humble intent is only to delight. Fifteen artists from varying disciplines are provided a venue to bring their personal visions to life in this eclectic collection of short stories. $24.99 Visit the Anthology Project website here.
Lee: It’s a cover of fish. It’s a beautiful picture but it isn’t going to sell comic books. And I think the cover does a disservice to the book because it looks very good. In the theme of the Flight, Popgun, & Liquid City anthologies, this will have lots of color and a diversity of stories. I’m betting it’s good, I just hope people find it.
Jim: I'd rather gamble on something like this then the Down Under anthology. Still more of a book I would want to page through at a store before buying.
Redball 6 Vol. 01 GN by (W) The Miller Bros. (A) Jok, Studio Haus
Awakening in the sprawling necropolis of Near Dis, Wayne soon finds himself assigned to the NDPD's elite 'spiricide unit - the so called Redball 6 - with five other dead cops from different periods of human (and nonhuman) history. Redball 6 is a darkly comedic police procedural set in a sprawling necropolis called Near Dis, an unhappy city in the littoral region of the Big Black itself. Near Dis! No one wants to be there; almost everyone ends up there. A purgatorial way station for borderline cases, Near Dis is home to legions of minor devils, wayward angels, and countless human spirits eagerly waiting their chance to move either up or down the celestial ladder. $19.95. See previews here.
Lee: This sounds like it might be fun! I’m always interested in demons and cops stories so I’ll give it a chance. And, Jok’s art is pretty good too.
Jim: I don' t know. I'm tired of all the demonic stuff, this sounds almost like a generic indy book, if that makes any sense. Pass.
Archaia Entertainment LLC
Okko Vol. 03: Cycle of Air HC by (W/A) Hub
It is the Spring of 1110 in the official calendar of the Pajan Empire. Okko is called upon to assist the daughter of Lady Mayudama, who has retreated into a profound silence. The best doctors have been unable to provide even a diagnosis of her condition. Okko may prove to be her last resort. But a strange force that has been prowling around the region for over a week has also arranged a meeting with the ronin for a duel of incomparable violence... Collects all four issues of Okko: The Cycle of Air mini-series. $19.95
Lee: I enjoyed the first two volumes in the Okko cycle and I’m sure this one will be good too. If you haven’t tried it, you really should. Great stuff.
Jim: I have breezed through Volume One and this is solid work. One day I will pick up Volume 2 and this Volume.