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Top 18 Graphic Novels, Comics & Manga:

December 2018

Come and explore comics in all their variety and globality in this month’s gleanings. First, let me alert you especially to these two strong commentaries on womanhood and motherhood from France and Canada…

Also great to see these masterworks revived in deluxe editions by two graphic geniuses from the USA and France…

And to wrap up, two more PG Tips are these explorations of the imagination from Italy and Brazil. There’s a world of amazing comics out there, and this listing will help you get exploring and discovering…

by Tsutomu Nihei
Viz Media

The publisher says:
A vast city lies under the shadow of colossal, ancient tombs, the identity of their builders lost to time. In the streets of the city, something is preying on the inhabitants, something that moves faster than the human eye can see and leaves unimaginable horror in its wake. Factory worker Denji Kudou just wants to keep his head down and continue his quiet existence, but he is the key to stopping forces that would bring about an apocalyptic transformation of the world.


An Invitation from a Crab
by panpanya
Dena Books

The publisher says:
If you are ever fortunate enough to see a crab strolling through your neighbourhood, please follow its lead. By slowing down to a crab’s pace and looking around and about in this world, you too may discover life’s many mysteries that are hidden in plain sight. This English-language debut from artist panpanya collects eighteen short stories detailing the comical, creepy and whimsical world of Japan’s indie comic scene. 224pgs B&W paperback.

Hi Jax & Hi Jinx: Life’s A Pitch, And Then You Live Forever
by Dame Darcy
Feral House

The publisher says:
Hi Jax & Hi Jinx is a black-humoured, edgy social comedy based on the real life experiences of cartoonist and musician/ performance artist Dame Darcy, creator of the comix series Meat Cake. Her Gothic Lolita-punk/dada life is itself is a in a no-holds-barred fight for social justice. Allying herself with witches, minority races, the LBGTQ community, billionaires, and Native Americans, Dame Darcy takes on reality TV, Self-Publishing, fine art exhibition, movie production, the Patriarchy and the soaring cost of higher education. 408pgs B&W paperback.


Ink & Anguish: A Jay Lynch Anthology
by Jay Lynch with Ed Piskor & Patrick Rosenkranz

The publisher says:
The career of Jay Lynch, cartoonist, satirist, and counterculture archivist, spanned more than six decades and displayed his many graphic talents in a vast array of contexts and media. He contributed to the earliest counterculture press, drew and edited many underground comic books, designed confectionary novelties and promotional products, and in later years painted a myriad of private commissions for fans of his work. Included are Lynch’s cartoon memoirs, Ink & Anguish, in collaboration with Ed Piskor (Hip-Hop Family Tree, X-Men: Grand Design), which were uncompleted at the time of his death. All his signature “Nard ‘n’ Pat” stories from Bijou Funnies are featured in this volume, as well as comics from Bogeyman, San Francisco Comic Book, Bizarre Sex, Teen-age Horizons of Shangri-la, a sampling of his Wacky Packages, Garbage Pail Kids and other Topps Chewing Gum premiums, and acrylic paintings. Lynch also narrates his life story throughout the book, from his dysfunctional childhood to the day he selected his coffin and headstone, in a half-century series of interviews and correspondence with comic historian Patrick Rosenkranz.  288pgs colour paperback.

Long Road to Liquor City
by Macon Blair & Joe Flood
Oni Press

The publisher says:
From filmmaker Macon Blair (Blue Ruin, I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore) and artist Joe Flood (Science Comics) comes a Great Depression-era adventure comedy about friendship, the open road, and the pursuit of happiness. As jaunty hobos Jed and Thanny crisscross the country in search of the fabled Liquor City, they are pursued relentlessly by the fearsome railyard bull Sgt. Ronan O’Feathers, who wrongly blames the boys for his wife’s death. Fleeing O’Feathers and his posse, they encounter a succession of colourful characters along the way. Some are underdogs, fellow misfits the boys end up doing right by, even if only by accident. Some are greedy and cruel, bullies that the boys make a headache for because they don’t appreciate being pushed around or anyone who’s doing the pushing. The only constant is the absurdity and mayhem they leave in their wake. 160pgs colour paperback.

by Sergio Ponchione

The publisher says:
Poised between reality and fantasy, Memorabilia is acclaimed cartoonist Sergio Ponchione’s wildly original homage to the legendary American comic book creators Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, Wally Wood, Will Eisner & Richard Corben, who captured his imagination as a child. Weaving history, speculative fiction, and pure fantasy, Ponchione has crafted a visually stunning love letter befitting such towering comic book legends. 56pgs colour oversized hardcover.



The Being
by Agata Bogacka, Ada Buchholc, Eva Juszczuk, Joanna Krotka, Dagmara Matuszak & Katarzyna

The publisher says:
Fed up with the continuous objectification of females in popular culture, we decided to do it our way. We chose the comic book as the medium for our message and invited a bunch of talented visual artists to collaborate with us and expand the breadth of stories and perspectives. Our goal is to embrace femininity in all shapes, sizes and ages and deal with the various myths, stereotypes and taboos surrounding female sexuality. Isn’t it strange that so many decades have passed since the sexual revolution, yet our conservative society still needs an open discussion about women’s right to explore and express their sexuality without being shamed or harassed? We believe that the answer to the torrid current political climate and heated social debate, punctuated with constant threats to our rights as women, is a real female revolution in word, image and action. We want to be in charge of our lives, bodies and our sexuality. Last but not least, ours is a manifesto of positive sexual energy. Because, frankly, we’ve had enough of all the negativity. Sex based on an exchange between free and equal individuals generates pure energy that drives our power to live. So let’s have some fun (and work to gain some fundamental human rights in the process]). Although The Being has been created entirely by women, it is meant to be perused and enjoyed by anyone on earth. Our brilliant team of illustrators, Agata Bogacka, Ada Buchholc, Eva Juszczuk, Joanna Krotka and Dagmara Matuszak, created distinct erotic worlds for each of the five chapters. As for the last chapter, we made an open call for portfolios because we wanted to provide a platform for young, undiscovered female talent. After hours of discussion considering some 90 portfolios from truly gifted illustrators, we chose to feature the work of a promising, previously unknown artist by the name of Katarzyna 120pgs B&W paperback.

The Chancellor and The Citadel
by Maria Capelle Frantz
Iron Circus Comics

The publisher says:
The World is over. All that remains is the Citadel, and the Chancellor who protects it from the hostility beyond its walls. But what can she do when the world at large is convinced it was her who brought the world to ruin in the first place, and are determined to make her pay for it by destroying the one bastion of hope the world has left? Cartoonist Maria Frantz’s graphic novel debut. 120pgs B&W paperback.



The Night
by Philippe Druillet
Titan Comics / Statix Press

The publisher says:
Fantasitic, violent baroque, outrageious. Born from a personal tragedy, The Night is the darkest, most explosive work of comics legend Philippe Druillet (Lone Sloane, Yragaël). In a ragged world of nihilistic anarchy, drug-addicted bikers and barbarians race toward the ultimate madness of their end. 72pgs colour hardcover.



The Sea
by Rikke Villadsen

The publisher says:
Danish cartoonist Rikke Villadsen makes her English language debut with this story of a sailor that is playfully creepy and oddly beautiful. A fisherman’s life traversing the ocean is full of danger and surprise, but even the most experienced seafarer would not be ready to pull up their net after they’ve caught a newborn baby and a talking fish! Thus begins a story full of expressive pencil drawings, provocative symbolism, and a madness that doesn’t just bubble beneath the surface of the water, but drenches the sailor-and the reader-like a tidal wave. Depicted in distinctive, and often grotesque, graphite, these unlikely shipmates trek through the thick fog, provoked by nature’s powerful siren song and perhaps something even more sinister. Revelations arise about the sailor’s perplexing childhood and the dubious birth of the mysterious baby as waves violently crash against the ship, already in a descent toward absurdity. Villadsen’s first foray into the American literary scene is ultimately about the end of one life, the beginning of another, and a man, literally and figuratively, lost at sea. 104pgs B&W hardcover.

The Silence of the Hippo
by David Bohm

The publisher says:
Poetic, somewhat absurd and in some places dark - such are the short folktales of this book. Most of them come out of traditional African folklore though, in the rendition of children’s storytellers, with a rather distinctive flavour. 64pgs B&W hardcover.




This Woman’s Work
by Julie Delporte
Drawn & Quarterly

The publisher says:
This Woman’s Work is a powerfully raw autobiographical work that asks vital questions about femininity and the assumptions we make about gender. Julie Delporte examines cultural artefacts and sometimes traumatic memories through the lens of the woman she is today-a feminist who understands the reality of the women around her, how experiencing rape culture and sexual abuse is almost synonymous with being a woman, and the struggle of reconciling one’s feminist beliefs with the desire to be loved. 252pgs colour paperback.

Trish Trash: Rollergirl of Mars Omnibus
by Jessica Abel
Super Genius
$29.99 / $19.99

The publisher says:
200 years from now, Trish “Trash” Nupindju lives on the newly inhabited Mars, whose settlers live under harsh and ruthless conditions. Trish dreams of only one thing: becoming a hoverderby star. It seems like making the professional derby team is the only way to escape a future of poverty on her parents’ farm. But, what happens when a half-dead Martian shows up on her doorstep and changes everything? Available in softcover and hardcover editions. 200pgs colour hardcover / paperback.

Vanishing Act
by Roman Muradov

The publisher says:
Written and drawn in thirteen styles, from comedy and confession to prophecy and interpretative dance, Vanishing Act is a polyphonic play of interconnected stories, synchronised in time and space on one melancholy evening. A paranoid man rehearses the upcoming party. A disheveled actor expounds on the conceptual potential of sitcoms. A beloved dog disappears into the Internet and starts a cult. A couple runs their argument in reverse. A bored seagull excretes the entire known universe. Vanishing Act is governed by one looping constraint that unifies all of the disparate threads: each following story starts in the middle of the previous one, overlapping until the end of the night, and back into the beginning of the book. 88pgs colour hardcover.

Wage Slaves
by Daria Bogdanska

The publisher says:
Wage Slaves is a comic book where the question: ‘What idiot said that with just a little bit of work everyone can succeed?’ resonates with the protagonist Daria. She has neither hope nor prospects for a great career. She does not have the time nor energy to draw, let alone sleep. This reality is contrary to that of the hipster’s life in Malmö. Their Facebook photos and the late night curries she serves them are the only excitement for the 25 year-old Daria. She sees her future broke and begging on the streets in a devastated Mad Max-style landscape with no children to take care of - because we are all in open relationships (because Daria is also very funny in that way). However the story of all those years of hard work and disappointment is above all the story of the beginnings of engagement: what if to break out of the darkness and despair, she could have just used her anger more wisely? Does being in a more ‘advantageous’ position or at least a little less precarious, give her the moral responsibility to defend others? Could this young woman, a little lost between complicated love stories, fighting crisis of doubts and deep despair, change the world?’ 199pgs B&W paperback.

Warren Tuft’s Complete Lance 1955-1960
by Warren Tufts
Classic Comics Press

The publisher says:
This edition of Warren Tuft’s masterpiece Lance will include the entire run of this magnificent comic strip (June 5, 1955 to May 29, 1960) in one volume with the Sundays in full glorious colour. Each daily and Sunday has been beautifully restored by Manuel Caldas, printed on high quality paper and measuring 9X12 in size, with a page count of 352 pages. Also included in this volume: an in-depth analysis of Tufts’ work on Lance by by Zoran Djukanovic, biographical information and more. 352pgs colour oversized hardcover.

by Ingrid Chabbert & Carole Maurel
Boom! Studios / Archaia

The publisher says:
After years of difficulty trying to have children, a young couple finally announces their pregnancy, only to have the most joyous day of their lives replaced with one of unexpected heartbreak. Their relationship is put to the test as they forge ahead, working together to rebuild themselves amidst the churning tumult of devastating loss, and ultimately facing the soul-crushing reality that they may never conceive a child of their own. Based on author Ingrid Chabbert‘s own experience, coupled with soft, sometimes dreamlike illustrations by Carole Maurel, Waves is a deeply moving story that poignantly captures a woman‘s exploration of her pain in order to rediscover hope.  90pgs colour hardcover.

by Guilherme Petreca
IDW / Top Shelf

The publisher says:
Ye is a curious young man, named after the only sound he knows how to make. His voice must have been stolen by the Colourless King, the source of all the world’s sorrows – terrifying, unrelenting, all-taking and never-giving. Now, Ye has no choice but the embark on a long voyage over land and sea, past grizzled pirates, a drunken clown, and more, to find the famous witch who can help him defeat the Colourless King. What he discovers may be a lesson for us all. Young cartoonist Guilherme Petreca won Brazil’s prestigious HQ Mix Award for Best Artist due to the unforgettable imagery on every page of Ye, his first full-length graphic novel. In the tradition of The Little Prince, The Neverending Story and A Wrinkle in Time, this graphic fable will leave young and old readers awestruck and eager to relive the journey. 176pgs B&W paperback.

Posted: September 28, 2018


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Comics Art by Paul Gravett from Tate Publishing

Comics Unmasked by Paul Gravett and John Harris Dunning from The British Library

1001 Comics  You Must Read Before You Die edited by Paul Gravett