If you are a comics lover, or even a comics liker, I can’t think of a better way to spend some time today, tomorrow and later on with this post on the Notable Comics listed in the 2013 Edition of Best American Comics. Series Editors Jessica Abel and Matt Madden—who are passing the torch to Bill Kartalopoulos for the next volume—sum up their six years:
Over the six volumes we’ve edited, we’ve tried to shine a spotlight on this list. As most guest editors point out in their introductions, the selection process, when it gets down to which stories make the cutoff for the volume and which don’t, can be alarmingly arbitrary. Often, we and the guest editors would love to include 50 stories in the published volume, but there just isn’t room. But when you combine the notable list with the stories that are printed, it might be a little more possible to talk about representing what’s we actually think is best in a given year. Also, when looking for good comics to read, why limit yourself? We’ve always hoped readers will delve a bit into the list to find more great stories once they finish reading BAC.
Below, we’ve reprinted the full list of the Notables from the 2013 volume, which was guest-edited by Jeff Smith. We’ve also added extensive links and images of the covers to intrigue you and to help you track the works down.
On the Notables list you’ll find a stunning panorama of the vibrant world of comics 2013, from the chilling real world to the most distinctive flights of fantasy. No need for sales charts or 3D covers here. And here’s the contents of the book, which is on sales this week—it’s a good time to feel good about comics.
1 : Alison Bechdel, “Mirror” (Excerpt) from Are You My Mother?
26 : Brandon Graham, “The Speaker” from Dark Horse Presents
35 : Jesse Jacobs, “The Divine Manifestation of a Singular Impulse” from By This Shall You Know Him
54 : Sam Alden, “Turn Back” (Excerpt) from The Haunter,Studygroupcomics.com
87 : Michael Deforge, “Manananggal” from Whatthingsdo.com
93 : Sophie Goldstein, The Good Wife
104 : Craig Thompson, “70 Nights of Pleasure” (Excerpt) from Habibi
126 : Colleen Doran and Derek McCulloch, with José Villarrubia, “The Story of Gráinne Ní Mháille” (Excerpt) fromGone to Amerikay
131 : James Kochalka Excerpts from American Elf
138 : Jorge Aguirre and Rafael Rosado “You Lied to Us!” (Excerpt) from Giants, Beware!
153 : Evan Dorkin and Jill Thompson, “Story Time” from Dark Horse Presents
162 : Faith Erin Hicks, “Raiders” (Excerpt) from Friends with Boys
183 : Leela Corman, “1912″ (Excerpt) from Unterzakhn
196 : Sammy Harkham, “A Husband and a Wife” from Kramers Ergot
209 : Grant Snider “Four Comics” from Incidentalcomics.com
214 : Eleanor Davis “Nita Goes Home” from Mome
229 : Tony Puryear, “Concrete Park” (Chapter 1) from Dark Horse Presents
238 : Malachi Ward, “Top Five” from Studygroupcomics.com
247 : Derf Backderf, “The Strange Boy” (Excerpt) from My Friend Dahmer
262 : Terry Moore, “A Killer’s Surprise” (Excerpt) from Rachel Rising
282 : Laura Park, “George” from Mome
288 : Kate Beaton, “Velocipede” from Hark! A Vagrant
295 : Evan Dorkin, “Fun Strips” from Dark Horse Presents
302 : Jennifer Hayden, “Saints in the Store” from Underwire
305 : Michael Kupperman, “Scary Bathtub Stories” from Tales Designed to Thrizzle
312 : Gabrielle Bell, “Cody” from Kramers Ergot
318 : Vanessa Davis, “In the Rough” from Tablet
322 : Jeremy Sorese, “Love Me Forever! Oh! Oh! Oh!” from Little Heart: A Comic Anthology for Marriage
337 : Joseph Lambert, “Discipline” (Excerpt) from Annie Sullivan and the Trials of Helen Keller
352 : Paul Pope, “1969″ from Dark Horse Presents
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.