Fantagraphics Releases For May 2008

by Jeff

Recent Fantagraphics Releases and Upcoming Arrivals as of May 2008.


RECENT FANTAGRAPHICS RELEASES

Amor Y Cohetes: A Love and Rockets Book

By Los Bros Hernandez

280-page 7.5″ x 9.25″ black & white softcover • $16.99 USD

To a very great extent, Love and Rockets is synonymous with Hoppers’ Maggie & Hopey and Palomar’s Luba & Carmen & Heraclio & Tonantzin… but there was always more to L&R than that. Amor Y Cohetes finally collects together in one convenient package all the non-Maggie and non-Palomar stories by all three Hernandez Brothers from that classic first, 50-issue Love and Rockets series — a dizzying array of styles and approaches that re-confirms these groundbreaking cartoonists’ place in the history of comics.

The book leads off with Gilbert’s original 40-page sci-fi epic “BEM” from 1981’s very first issue of Love and Rockets, featuring a very different Luba and a much looser, Heavy Metal- and Marvel Comics-inspired way of storytelling.

Other stories include Jaime’s charming “Rocky and Fumble” series starring a planet-hopping girl and her robot; stunning one-shots such as Gilbert’s Frida Kahlo biography “Frida” and his shocking autobiographical fantasia “My Love Book”; Mario’s genre thrillers which take place “Somewhere in California”; Gilbert’s brutally dystopian “Errata Stigmata” stories; the playful “Hernandez Satyricon,” with Gilbert drawing Jaime’s characters, and “War Paint,” with Jaime trying out Palomar; Gilbert’s light-hearted “Music for Monsters” starring Bang and Inez; and even a fantastical “non-continuity” Maggie and Hopey story “Easter Hunt” by Jaime that didn’t fit into the other books.

Amor Y Cohetes, the seventh (and concluding, for now) volume in the new “Complete Love and Rockets” series of compact, affordable paperbacks, shows a very different side of Los Bros Hernandez.

The Complete Love and Rockets Library: Vol. 1

By Los Bros Hernandez

seven 7.5″ x 9.25″ black & white softcovers, 1944 pages total • $84.99 USD

Celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2007, Love and Rockets was finally released in its most accessible form yet: As a series of compact, thick, affordable, mass-market volumes that present the whole story, originally serialized in Love and Rockets Vol. 1 from 1982 to 1996, in perfect chronological order. Now that the series is complete, we are pleased to offer all seven volumes — nearly 2,000 pages of incredible comics — for a special package price.

Mome Vol. 11 – Summer 2008

By various artists; edited by Gary Groth & Eric Reynolds

120-page 7″ x 9″ color/b&w softcover • $14.99 USD

Vol. 11 of our acclaimed anthology series welcomes Killoffer, the acclaimed French cartoonist whose work has previously only been seen in the acclaimed collection 176 Apparitions of Killoffer. Killoffer delivers a new 12-page comic as well as front and back covers. MOME also features returning regulars Al Columbia, Kurt Wolfgang, Ray Fenwick, Eleanor Davis, Dash Shaw, John Hankiewicz, Emile Bravo, Andrice Arp, Tom Kaczynski, and Paul Hornschemeier. Plus, newcomers Conor O’Keefe and Nate Neal, as well as an interview with Ray Fenwick by Gary Groth.

Mome Vol. 1-10 Mega-Bundle

By various artists; edited by Gary Groth & Eric Reynolds

ten 120-page 7″ x 9″ color/b&w softcovers • $99.99 USD

THE FIRST TEN ISSUES OF OUR ACCLAIMED ANTHOLOGY SERIES FOR ONE AMAZING LOW PRICE!

If you’re interested in what’s “happening” and “now” in comics, there’s one place to turn: Mome, our quarterly anthology of the best in contemporary, cutting-edge cartooning. With so many volumes in print, it can be difficult to know where to start… so we’ve made it easy for you by offering Volumes 1-10 in one convenient package at nearly 1/3 OFF the combined cover prices! Don’t miss out on this incredible deal.

Collectively, these 10 volumes of Mome present work from over two dozen of comics’ finest talents, including its brightest young stars, as well as a few seasoned veterans (in approximate order of appearance): John Pham, Paul Hornschemeier, Anders Nilsen, Jeffrey Brown, David Heatley, Andrice Arp, Kurt Wolfgang, Gabrielle Bell, Jonathan Bennett, Martin Cendreda, Sophie Crumb, David B., R. Kikuo Johnson, Zak Sally, Robert Goodin, Lewis Trondheim, Al Columbia, Eleanor Davis, Tom Kaczynski, Ray Fenwick, Joe Kimball, Émile Bravo, Mike Scheer, Jim Woodring, Dash Shaw and John Hankiewicz. And to cap it all off, each volume features an in-depth interview with one of the contributors, conducted by Gary Groth. Whew!

Mineshaft #21

By various artists

48-page 5.5″ x 8.5″ black & white comic book • $6.95 USD

Front cover hand lettered and designed by Robert Crumb, plus five wonderful pages of sketchbook drawings inside! Back cover by Christoph Mueller, “My Angel of Sin”! The life of famous Beat underground poet, Diane Di Prima, drawn and written by Mary Fleener (with guest Harvey Pekar)! Poetry by Diane Di Prima! “Pat & Corky” fiction by J.R. Helton, Zippy the Pinhead and how Bill Griffith got his start! New artwork by Christoph Mueller (with guest Joe Coleman) and William Crook, Jr.! Jay Lynch & Ed Piskor’s story about Lynch and Crumb going to visit Chester Gould! “In Praise of Goth Beauticians” by Andrei Codrescu and illustrated by Aaron Lange! Plus the long awaited next chapter to the Green Star by editor Everett Rand, also Frank Stack, Bruce Simon, Aaron Lange, letters from around the globe and more!!

Castle Waiting Vol. II #11

By Linda Medley

24-page 6.75″ x 10.25″ black & white comic book • $3.95 USD

A fable for modern times, Castle Waiting is a fairy tale that’s not about rescuing the princess, saving the kingdom, or fighting the ultimate war between Good and Evil — but about being a hero in your own home. In this issue: with nary a strip-mall in sight, the castle folk enjoy an evening of bowling and clothes shopping; and Jain learns some interesting details concerning lovable Doctor Fell’s puzzling condition.

Castle Waiting Vol. II #1-10 Starter Pack

By Linda Medley

ten 24-64-page comic books with cardstock covers • $24.99 USD

The popularity of Castle Waiting continues to grow, and to help new fans catch up on the latest installments of Linda Medley’s award-winning ongoing epic, we’re pleased to offer the first ten issues of Volume II in one handy package at a significant savings over the combined cover price — over a dollar off each issue!

In these issues, a new chapter begins as the Castle welcomes some new guests, undergoes some renovations, and reveals more of its secrets. Secrets about the Castle’s denizens are revealed as well, as we delve into the pasts of Lady Jain, Iron Henry, and Dr. Fell. Medley’s sharp pen and even sharper storytelling create a delightfully adventurous universe.

Castle Waiting: The “Hand Made” Special Edition

By Linda Medley

456-page black & white 5.5″ x 8″ hardcover with the extras listed below • $150.00 USD

This ultra-deluxe, hand-assembled edition of the Castle Waiting graphic novel includes the following:

• Twenty full-color archival chapter-divider bookplates printed on acid- and lignin-free 50 lb. stock with pigmented inks; the adhesive is a permanent modified acrylic (no gooey rubber to gum up the works). Each plate measures 4″ x 5″.
• Tipped-in front endpaper plate.
• Gilded edge pages.
• Tiny flat two-sided solid pewter charm added to the bound-in ribbon bookmark. Measures approximately 1/2″ wide x 3/4″ high.
• Original dustjacket with brass protective corners. Reproduced from the vintage tooled-leather cover Linda’s very own extra special personal copy wears. Printed in full-color on heavyweight glossy paper.
• “Liberry Card” set of three cards: includes a Library Card, Borrow Slip, and Author Card in an acid-free pocket affixed into the book. All are printed both sides on acid-free cardstock and each card measures 2.75″ x 5.5″. The Library Card is reproduced from a Victorian (circa 1898) library card, and the signed Author Card is in the style of cabinet cards of the same era.

Most Outrageous: The Trials and Trespasses of Dwaine Tinsley and Chester the Molester

By Bob Levin

200-page 6″ x 9″ softcover with B&W illustrations • $19.99 USD

In May 1989, Dwaine Tinsley stood at the summit of an unlikely career. The product of a broken, trailer-trash marriage, he was a high school dropout who had decided to become a professional cartoonist while serving a six-year sentence in a Maryland prison for burglary. As cartoon editor for Larry Flynt’s notorious Hustler magazine, he had assembled a staff of pen-and-Wite-Out-wielding Lenny Bruces whose unprecedentedly offensive socio-sexual cartoons had spearheaded that publication’s fight against the forces of censorship and repression that sought to overthrow the political and cultural gains of the 1960s. His primary personal contribution — spawned amidst a national hysteria that saw a plague of child sexual abuse arising everywhere from pre-school staffs to satanic sects — was “Chester the Molester,” a hulking middle-aged man who craved pre-pubescent girls.

And then Tinsley’s teenage daughter accused him of sexually violating her over the course of five years. And the prosecution in his ensuing criminal trial cast several storage boxes full of his cartoons against him. Most Outrageous is the story of the trial of Dwaine Tinsley as well as the story of Tinsley’s family life.

Bob Levin’s writings have established him as one of the most thought-provoking chroniclers of cartoonists today. While focusing upon the work and lives of the most offbeat creators in the field in order to champion the pursuit of individual vision, no matter how unorthodox or inflammatory, he has explored issues common to artists of every medium. Most Outrageous carries his search onto new, unsettling ground.

Jessica Farm Vol. 1

By Josh Simmons

96-page black & white 7″ x 8.75″ softcover • $14.99 USD

Hot on the heels of his first graphic novel, House, Josh Simmons’ Jessica Farm fuses serialized adventure, fantasy and psychological horror and stamps it with his signature macabre sensibility in his atmospheric new graphic novel. Like a Lynchian take on Alice in Wonderland, Jessica Farm opens with an exterior of what could be any Midwestern farmhouse: once inside, we track our titular heroine as she bounds out of bed on Christmas and goes about her morning routine, eventually breakfasting with her grandparents. The banality of the situation is subverted by a ratcheting sense of dread, however, as we discover that Jessica’s increasingly nightmarish house is filled with creatures around every corner: some whimsical, some sexual, some despairing and some malevolent. Jessica Farm is an ambitious experiment in world-building: as conceived by Simmons, this book is the first volume of a life-spanning comics project in which he drew one page every month for the past seven years, starting in January 2000 — and will continue this project for 50 years in total, making up the story as he goes and releasing 96-page increments every 8 years until he amasses a 600-page body of work.

Registered users, click here for a downloadable PDF preview of this book.

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The Comics Journal #289

200-page 7.5″ x 9.5″ b&w/color squarebound softcover magazine • $11.95 USD

Bring out your dead! They won’t want to miss our interview with Robert (Marvel Zombies) Kirkman, whose career has encompassed Battle Pope and Invincible. Plus an essay on Kirkman’s The Walking Dead. Also: Shaun Tan on the international award-winning The Arrival; Jessica Abel and Matt Madden on how to draw comics; and the seedy dawn of the Hustler cartoon. Also unearthed, in this issue’s comics gallery: Ed Whelan’s rarely seen Minute Movies, serial strips of the 1920s based on popular movie genres of the day.

UPCOMING ARRIVALS COMING SOON

Bottomless Belly Button

By Dash Shaw

720-page 6″ x 8.5″ monochrome softcover • $29.99 USD

Bottomless Belly Button is a comedy-drama that follows the dysfunctional adventures of the Loony Family.

After 40-some years of marriage, Maggie and David Loony shock their children with their announcement of a planned divorce. But the reason for splitting isn’t itself shocking: they’re “just not in love any more.” The announcement sparks a week long Loony family reunion at Maggie and David’s creepy (and possibly haunted) beach house.

The eldest child, Dennis, struggles with his parents’ decision while facing difficulties of his own in his recent marriage. Believing that his parents are hiding the true reasons behind their estrangement, Dennis embarks on a quest to discover the truth and searches through clues, trap doors, and secret tunnels in attempt to find an answer. Claire, the middle child, is a single mother whose 16-year-old daughter, Jill, is apathetic to the divorce but confounded by Claire and troubled by her own “mannish” appearance. The youngest child, Peter, is a hack filmmaker suffering from paralyzing insecurities who establishes an unorthodox romance with a mysterious day care counselor at the beach.

In a six-day period rich with atmospheric sequences, these characters stumble blindly around one another, often ignoring their surroundings and consumed by their own daily conflicts. Visually, Shaw employs a leisurely storytelling pace that allows room for exploring the interconnecting relationships among the characters and plays to his strength as a cartoonist — small gestural details and nuanced expressions that bring the characters to vivid and intimate life.

If the controversial R.D. Laing wrote an episode of The Simpsons, it might read something like Bottomless Belly Button.

Comic Arf

By various artists; edited and designed by Craig Yoe

120-page 9″ x 12″ color/b&w softcover • $19.99 USD

Another great Arf book for 2008, and it features one of the greatest comickers of all: Milt Gross! The Gross-ness starts off with a stunning cover painting done in the 1930s but, as they say, ripped from today’s headlines. It’s all about immigration: Uncle Sam grinds up a sea of immigrants and out come… classic comic strip characters!

Milt Gross drew a 1920s comic that left the last panel blank for aspiring cartoonists. Editor Craig Yoe drafted a who’s who of contemporary cartoonists to complete Gross’s unfinished masterpieces. Art Spiegelman, Seymour Chwast, Patrick McDonnell, Mort Walker, R. Crumb, Bil Keane, Johnny Ryan, Jaime Hernandez, Mike Mignola, Bill Griffith, Kaz, Gene Deitch, Joost Swarte and a dozen more cartooning celebrities contribute art especially done for this Arf Happening!

The Arf books are famed for unearthing unknown Old Skool cartoonist geniuses. Comic Arf showcases the brilliant Dudley Fisher who amazingly drew crowded scenes all from a bird’s eye view. And Arch Dale is another unsung genius getting his due with his Smurfs-meet-Dr. Seuss characters, the Doo-Dads, who populated Canadian comic strips 75 years ago.

Arf also highlights unusual work from recognized masters. Walt Kelly, famed for his Pogo strip, did a surreal nightmarish strip for children presented in all its glory in this latest Arf tome. Amongst all this fun, Comic Arf is also proud to present a hard-hitting chapter this volume entitled “The 15 Most Powerful Anti-War Cartoons of History,” drawing from every major conflict of the last 200 years.

All this and much more, from 1950s devilish horror comics to cartoonist portraits by Gary Panter and Mitch O’Connell.

Explainers: The Complete Village Voice Strips (1956-1966)

By Jules Feiffer

568-page 9.25″ x 5.25″ black & white hardcover • $28.95 USD

In 1956, a relatively unknown cartoonist by the name of Jules Feiffer started contributing a strip to the only alternative weekly published in the US, a small radical newspaper called The Village Voice. His strip tackled just about every issue, private and public, that affected the sentient American: relationships, sexuality, love, family, parents, children, psychoanalysis, neuroses, presidents, politicians, media, race, class, labor, religiion, foreign policy, war, and one or two other existential questions. It was the first time that the American public had been subjected to a weekly dose of comics that so uncompromisingly and wittily confronted individuals’ private fears and society’s public transgressions. Explainers is the first of four volumes collecting Feiffer’s entire run of weekly strips from The Village Voice. This edition contains approximately 500 strips originally published between 1956 and 1966 in a brick-like landscape hardcover format.

Rebel Visions: The Underground Comix Revolution 1963-1975 (New Softcover Edition)

By Patrick Rosenkranz

292-page 9″ x 12″ color/b&w softcover • $34.99 USD

Now available in a newly designed and affordable softcover edition! This is a provocative chronicle of the guerilla art movement that changed comics forever. This comprehensive book follows the movements of 50 artists from 1967 to 1972, the heyday of the underground comix movement. Through interviews with the participants and other materials, Rebel Visions is the most intimate look ever at the people and events that forged the phenomenon known as underground comix, from New York to San Francisco, from the corn belt to deep in the heart of Texas, beginning that day in 1968 when R. Crumb debuted ZAP #1 from a baby carriage on Haight Ashbury Street. Rosenkranz has spent over 30 years researching this book and acquiring the cooperation of every significant underground cartoonist who worked throughout this period, including Crumb, Gilbert (Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers) Shelton, Bill (Zippy) Griffith, Art (Maus) Spiegelman, Jack Jackson, S. Clay Wilson, Robert Williams, and many more. The book is illustrated with many never-before-seen drawings by all of the underground cartoonists and exclusive photographs.

The book is centered in San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury district, where Crumb and the rest of his Zap cronies commingled with the rest of the city’s counter-cultural scene, notably musicians like the Grateful Dead and Janis Joplin. The counterculture was omnipresent in San Francisco for those few years, with underground tabloids like Yellow Dog and the San Francisco Oracle steering the zeitgeist out-of-control, along with the music, political, and psychedelic drug scenes, all of which found a group of unlikely revolutionaries who drew cartoons right at the epicenter. This is the definitive book on a memorable and historic era, available for the first time in paperback in this newly designed, expanded and revised edition.

The Number 73304-23-4153-6-96-8

By Thomas Ott

104-page 6.25″ x 10″ black & white hardcover • $28.95 USD

Swiss horror master Thomas Ott returns with the first full-length graphic novel of his career. When clearing up the cell of a prisoner who has been sentenced to death and subsequently executed, a prison guard finds a small piece of paper with a combination of numbers on it.

On the spur of the moment, he puts it into his pocket.

As the guard lives a solitary, monotonous life, the numbers on the paper awake his curiosity. To find out their hidden meaning could add a new meaning to his life as well, so the guard stumbles into situations in which the number or part of it seem to achieve a certain importance and offer him hints and possible solutions. And the numbers signal a radical change in his luck. He gets to know a woman, falls in love with her, and one night, in a casino, he wins a huge amount of money when gambling on these numbers.

But the next morning, the woman and money have disappeared.

The man goes in search of the woman and the money. But from that day on, his luck changes and the numbers bring him only bad luck, sending him inexorably into an abyss that he might not recover from. Thomas Ott’s O. Henry-esque plot twists will delight fans of classic horror like The Twilight Zone and Tales from the Crypt, or modern masters like filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan; his hallucinatory, hyper-detailed scratchboard illustrations will haunt you long after you’ve put the book down.

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