Pandemic and mass deaths. Social and economic unrest. A presidential election unlike any other. As one decade closed with uncertainty, another began with vastly subdued anticipation and expectation, and the new list of 75 graphic novels for Winter 2021 reflect our need for escapism and to reconcile our personal and collective histories.

This list is every bit as eclectic as The Beat’s “Shut In Theater: Weekend Reading.” David F. Walker, Eryck Tait, Gene Ambaum, Pierre Christin, Rachel Marie-Crane Williams, and Nick Weldon offer fresh perspectives on pivotal figures and events that made history and whose stories remain relevant today. John Jennings and David Brame adapt a short story by Nnedi Okorafor. Tim Foley and Elliot Kirschner adapt Dan Rather’s What Unites Us to explore what it means to be a true patriot. Mike Mignola has compiled an anthology of drawings he created and auctioned off in support of Jose Andres’ World Central Kitchen. There are new editions of graphic novels by Gary Painter, Ray Fawkes, and Osamu Tezuka and new English translations of manga by Jiro Taniguchi, Shigeru Mizuki and Yoshiharu Tsuge. Sylvie Kantorovitz, Elodie Durand, and Julia Kaye offer intensely personal stories about adolescent identity and sexual awakening. Tim Fielder conceives a cautionary fantasy tale in which an immortal African warrior bears witness to historical acts of racism.

Whether one desires something personal, fantastical, or inspirational, there is something for every temperament in these 75 graphic novels for Winter 2021. Without further ado, let’s dive into our list!

JANUARY


 

Be More Chill: The Graphic Novel

Be More Chill Cover

Created By: Ned Vizzini
Writer: David Levithan
Artist: Nick Bertozzi
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Release Date: Jan. 6 (Comics Shops) / Jan. 5 (Bookstores)
List Price: $14.99

Jeremy Heere is your average high school dork. Day after day, he stares at beautiful Christine, the girl he can never have, and dryly notes the small humiliations that come his way. Until the day he learns about the “squip.” A pill-sized supercomputer that you swallow, the squip is guaranteed to bring you whatever you most desire in life. By instructing him on everything from what to wear, to how to talk and walk, the squip transforms Jeremy from geek to the coolest guy in class. Soon he is friends with his former tormentors and has the attention of the hottest girls in school. But Jeremy discovers that there is a dark side to handing over control of–and it can have disastrous consequences.

After The Rain

Created By: Nnedi Okorafor
Writer: John Jennings
Artist: David Brame
Publisher: Abrams ComicArts
Release Date: Jan. 13 (Comics Shops) / Jan. 5 (Bookstores)
List Price: $22.99

After the Rain is a graphic novel adaptation of Nnedi Okorafor’s short story “On the Road.” The drama takes place in a small Nigerian town during a violent and unexpected storm. A Nigerian-American woman named Chioma answers a knock at her door and is horrified to see a boy with a severe head wound standing at her doorstep. He reaches for her, and his touch burns like fire. Something is very wrong. Haunted and hunted, Chioma must embrace her heritage in order to survive. John Jennings and David Brame’s graphic novel collaboration uses bold art and colors to powerfully tell this tale of identity and destiny.

Drawing Lines: An Anthology of Women Cartoonists

Writers: Joyce Carol Oates, Gail Simone, Colleen Coover, Trina Robbins and Roberta Gregory
Artist: Various
Publisher: Dark Horse Books
Release Date: Dec. 23 (Comics Shops) / Jan. 12 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.99

Showcasing stories from some of the comics’ greatest female creators, this anthology features stories that range from mainstream adventures to hilarious comic shorts to heart-wrenching autobiographical stories. Originally published as Sexy Chix in 2006, this new edition is presented in a new, larger size! Featuring over a dozen stories by top talents like New York Times bestselling author Joyce Carol Oates, Eisner Award-winning illustrator Jill Thompson, Scary Godmother creator Colleen Doran, DC Comics creators Gail Simone and Joëlle Jones, and many more!

Peepers

Cartoonist: Patrick Keck
Publisher: Fantagraphics
Release Date: Jan. 27 (Comics Shops) / Jan. 12 (Bookstores)
List Price: $39.99

This trippy sci-fi romance needs to be seen to be appreciated for its full psychedelic glory. Peepers needs to wake up, eat food, get drunk, and fly to space, because living out your life on top of someone else’s brain may be all its cracked up to be. Patrick Keck’s graphic novel resides in a space vacated by the likes of Vaughn Bodé and Ralph Bakshi. Full-color illustrations throughout.

The Music Makers

Writer & Artist: Gary Dumm
Publisher: Z2 Comics
Release Date:  Jan. 12 (Bookstores)
List Price: $21.99

Produced in conjunction with The Music Maker Relief Foundation. The Music Makers contains autobio comics about some of the best musicians you may have never heard of. Also featuring a soundtrack with songs by them. Artists include Taj Mahal, Robert Finley, Essie May Brooks and many more. Lastly some of the strips were written by the late great Harvey Pekar of American Splendor fame. All proceeds from the book will go to the creators and The Music Maker Relief Foundation whose mission is to take care of old musicians in need.

Monumental: Oscar Dunn and His Radical Fight in Reconstruction Louisiana

Monumental Cover

Writers: Brian K. Mitchell, Barrington S. Edwards, Nick Weldon
Publisher: Historic New Orleans Collection
Release Date:  Jan. 14 (Bookstores)
List Price: $19.95

Monumental tells, for the first time, the incredible story of Oscar James Dunn, a New Orleanian born into slavery who became America’s first Black lieutenant governor and acting governor. A champion of universal suffrage, civil rights, and integrated public schools, Dunn fought for radical change during the early years of Reconstruction in Louisiana, a post-Civil War era rife with corruption, subterfuge, and violence. A graphic history informed by newly discovered primary sources, Monumental resurrects, in vivid detail, Louisiana and New Orleans after the Civil War–and presents an iconic American life that never should have been forgotten. Contextual essays and a map and timeline add layers of depth to the narrative. Monumental is a story of determination, scandal, betrayal, and how one man’s principled fight for equality and justice may have cost him everything.

The Black Panther Party: A Graphic Novel History

Writer: David F. Walker
Artist: Marcus Kwame Anderson
Publisher: Ten Speed Press
Release Date:  Jan. 19 (Bookstores)
List Price: $19.99

Founded in Oakland, California, in 1966, the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense was a radical political organization that stood in defiant contrast to the mainstream civil rights movement. This gripping illustrated history explores the impact and significance of the Panthers, from their social, educational, and healthcare programs that were designed to uplift the Black community to their battle against police brutality through citizen patrols and frequent clashes with the FBI, which targeted the Party from its outset. Using dramatic comic book-style retellings and illustrated profiles of key figures, The Black Panther Party captures the major events, people, and actions of the party, as well as their cultural and political influence and enduring legacy.

Asadora!, Vol. 1

Cartoonist: Naoki Urasawa
Publisher: Viz Media LLC
Release Date: Jan. 20 (Comics Shops) / Jan. 19 (Bookstores)
List Price: $14.99

In 2020, a large creature rampages through Tokyo, destroying everything in its path. In 1959, Asa Asada, a spunky young girl from a huge family in Nagoya, is kidnapped for ransom—and not a soul notices. When a typhoon hits Nagoya, Asa and her kidnapper must work together to survive. But there’s more to her kidnapper and this storm than meet the eye. When Asa’s mother goes into labor yet again, Asa runs off to find a doctor. But no one bats an eye when she doesn’t return—not even as a storm approaches Nagoya. Forgotten yet again, Asa runs into a burglar and tries to stop him on her own, a decision that leads to an unlikely alliance.

Infinitum: An Afrofuturist Tale

Writer & Artist: Tim Fielder
Publisher: Amistad
Release Date:  Jan. 19 (Bookstores)
List Price: $27.99

In INFINITUM, King Aja ba and Queen Lewa are revered across the African continent for their impressive political and military skills. Yet the future of their kingdom is in jeopardy, for the royal couple do not have an heir of their own. When the King kidnaps his son born to a concubine, Obinrin, she curses ba with the “gift” of immortality. After enjoying long, wonderful lives both, Queen Lewa and the crown prince die naturally, leaving the ageless bereaved King ba heartbroken and alone. Taking advantage of ba’s vulnerability, enemy nations rise to power and kill the king – or so they think.  King Aja ba survives the fatal attack, finally realizing the bitter fruit of Obinrin’s curse. For millennia, the immortal ba wanders the earth, mourning his lost subjects and searching for a new kingdom. His journey leads him across time, allowing him to witness the trans-Atlantic slave trade, the New World, and the American Civil Rights Movement. The expansion of global technology brings about intergalactic travel, first contact with an alien species, and conflicts within and ultimately outside the known universe. Thrust into these seminal events, ba, now known by many as “John,” faces harrowing decisions that will determine mankind’s physical and spiritual trajectory.

Red Flowers

Cartoonist: Yoshiharu Tsuge
Editor: Mitsuhiro Asakawa
Publisher: Drawn & Quarterly
Release Date:  Jan. 26 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.95

Yoshiharu Tsuge leaves early genre trappings behind, taking a light, humorous approach in these stories based on his own travels. Red Flowers ranges from deep character studies to personal reflections to ensemble comedies set in the hotels and bathhouses of rural Japan. There are irascible old men, drunken gangsters, reflective psychiatric-hospital escapees, and mysterious dogs. Tsuge’s stories are mischievous and tender even as they explore complex relationships and heartache. It’s a world of extreme poverty, tradition, secret fishing holes, and top-dollar koi farming.

Legends of the DC Universe: Doug Mahnke

Writer: Various
Artist: Doug Mahnke
Publisher: DC Comics
Release Date: Jan. 27 (Comics Shops) / Jan. 26 (Bookstores)
List Price: $49.99

Legends of the DC Universe: Doug Mahnke is a collection of some of the most incredible work from the iconic Doug Mahnke! Known for his brilliant work with BATMAN, SUPERMAN, BLACK ADAM, GREEN LANTERN, and so many other iconic DC characters–Legends of the DC Universe: Doug Mahnke is a collection you won’t want to miss!

FEBRUARY


 

The Comic Book Guide to Growing Food: Step-by-Step Vegetable Gardening for Everyone

Writer: Joseph Tychonievich
Artist: Liz Anna Kozik
Publisher: Ten Speed Press
Release Date: Feb. 3 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 2 (Bookstores)
List Price: $19.99

Like having your own personal gardening mentor at your side, The Comic Book Guide to Growing Food is the story of Mia, an eager young professional who wants to grow her own vegetables but doesn’t know where to start, and George, her retired neighbor who loves gardening and walks her through each step of the process. Throughout the book, “cheat sheets” sum up George’s key facts and techniques, providing a handy quick reference for anyone starting their first vegetable garden, including how to find the best location, which vegetables are easiest to grow, how to pick out the healthiest plants at the store, when (and when not) to water, how to protect your plants from pests, and what to do with extra produce if you grow too much. If you are a visual learner, beginning gardener, looking for something new, or have struggled to grow vegetables in the past, you’ll find this unique illustrated format ideal because many gardening concepts–from proper planting techniques to building raised beds–are easier to grasp when presented visually, step by step. Easy and entertaining, The Comic Book Guide to Growing Food makes homegrown vegetables fun and achievable.

Twist

Cartoonist: Tom Grass
Publisher: Pegasus Crime
Release Date:  Feb. 2 (Bookstores)
List Price: $25.95

Eighteen-year-old Twist doesn’t have much. No money, no home and no family. All he has is his reputation as one of the most daring street artists in London—whose unique skills are matched only by his infamous talent as an urban climber. But when he finds himself on the run from the police, he knows that he could be about to lose the last thing he has left—his freedom. Until he is saved by the mysterious Dodge. When Dodge introduces him to con artist and “art collector” Cornelius Faginescu, Twist realizes that he finally has the chance to be part of something. All he has to do is put aside his moral objections and learn how to steal . . .Twist is soon drawn deeper into the gang and, as his feelings for grow for the intriguing and dangerous “Red,” he discovers she has a secret—they are no longer playing for money. They’re playing for their lives.

Old Gods & New: A Companion To Jack Kirby’s Fourth World

Created By: Jack Kirby
Writer: John Morrow
Artist: Jon B. Cooke
Publisher: TwoMorrows Publishing
Release Date: Jan. 20 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 2 (Bookstores)
List Price: $26.95

For its 80th issue, the Jack Kirby Collector magazine presents a double-sized 50th anniversary examination of Kirby’s magnum opus! Spanning the pages of four different comics starting in 1970 (New Gods, Forever People, Mister Miracle, and Jimmy Olsen), the sprawling “Epic for our times” was cut short mid-stream, leaving fans wondering how Jack would’ve resolved the confrontation between evil Darkseid of Apokolips, and his son Orion of New Genesis. This companion to that “Fourth World” series looks back at Jack Kirby’s own words, as well as those of assistants Mark Evanier and Steve Sherman, inker Mike Royer, and publisher Carmine Infantino, to determine how it came about, where it was going, and how Kirby would’ve ended it before it was prematurely cancelled by DC Comics! It also examines Kirby’s use of gods in Thor and other strips prior to the Fourth World, how they influenced his DC epic, and affected later series like The Eternals and Captain Victory. With an overview of hundreds of Kirby’s creations like Big Barda, Boom Tubes and Granny Goodness, and post-Kirby uses of his concepts, no Fourth World fan will want to miss it! Compiled, researched, and edited by John Morrow, with contributions by Jon B. Cooke.

Thirsty Mermaids

Cartoonist: Kat Leyh
Publisher: Gallery 13
Release Date: Feb. 10 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 9 (Bookstores)
List Price: $29.99

Fresh out of shipwreck wine, three tipsy mermaids decide to magically masquerade as humans and sneak onto land to indulge in much more drinking and a whole lot of fun in the heart of a local seaside tourist trap. But the good times abruptly end the next morning as, through the haze of killer hangovers, the trio realizes they never actually learned how to break the spell, and are now stuck on land for the foreseeable future. Which means everything from: enlisting the aid of their I-know-we-just-met-can-we-crash-with-you bartender friend, struggling to make sense of the world around them, and even trying to get a job with no skill set…all while attempting to somehow return to the sea and making the most of their current situation with tenacity and camaraderie (especially if someone else is buying).

Parenthesis

Cartoonist: Élodie Durand
Publisher: Top Shelf Productions
Release Date: Feb. 10 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 9 (Bookstores)
List Price: $19.99

Judith is barely out of her teens when a tumor begins pressing on her brain, ushering in a new world of seizures, memory gaps, and loss of self. Suddenly, the sentence of her normal life has been interrupted by the opening of a parenthesis that may never close. Based on the real experiences of cartoonist Élodie Durand, Parenthesis is a gripping testament of struggle, fragility, acceptance, and transformation which was deservedly awarded the Revelation Prize of the Angoulême International Comics Festival.

The Grande Odalisque

Writers & Artists: Jerome Mulot, Floernt Ruppert, Bastien Vives
Publisher: Fantagraphics
Release Date: Feb. 10 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 9 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.99

Alex and Carole, friends since childhood, are now (literal) partners in crime. But the heist – to steal the Ingres painting The Grande Odalisque from the Louvre in Paris – is too much for the duo to handle, so they bring in Clarence, a bureaucrat’s son with a price on his head by a Mexican drug cartel and, more importantly, an arms dealer. Next is Sam, a stunt motorcyclist and boxer by trade, who proves trigger happy with tranquilizer darts. Using soda can smoke bombs, rocket launchers, and hang gliders, Alex, Carole, and Sam set off a set of circumstances that results in a battle with the French Special Forces – and their partnership, which was on the rocks, will never be the same again. Ruppert and Mulot, two of the most innovative comic creators in the world, team up with multiple Angouleme prize winner Bastien Vives to bring you this impossibly funny, violent, and sexy action-packed thriller. Full-color illustrations throughout.

We Hereby Refuse: Japanese American Acts of Resistance During World War II

Writers: Frank Abe, Tamiko Nimura
Artists: Ross Ishikawa, Matt Sasaki
Publisher: Chin Music Press
Release Date:  Feb. 9 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.95

Three Japanese American individuals with different beliefs and backgrounds decided to resist imprisonment by the United States government during World War II in different ways. Jim Akutsu, considered by some to be the inspiration for John Okada’s No-No Boy, resisted the draft and argued that he had no obligation to serve the US military because he was classified as an enemy alien. Hiroshi Kashiwagi renounced his United States citizenship and refused to fill out the “loyalty questionnaire” required by the US government. He and his family were segregated by the government and ostracized by the Japanese American community for being “disloyal.” And Mitsuye Endo became a reluctant but willing plaintiff in a Supreme Court case that was eventually decided in her favor. These three stories show the devastating effects of the imprisonment, but also how widespread and varied the resistance was.

Sylvie

Cartoonist: Sylvie Kantorovitz
Publisher: Walker Books US
Release Date: Feb. 10 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 9 (Bookstores)
List Price: $16.99

Sylvie lives in a school in France. Her father is the principal, and her home is an apartment at the end of a hallway of classrooms. As a young child, Sylvie and her brother explore this most unusual kingdom, full of small mysteries and quirky surprises. But in middle and high school, life grows more complicated. Sylvie becomes aware of her parents’ conflicts, the complexities of shifting friendships, and what it means to be the only Jewish family in town. She also begins to sense that her perceived “success” relies on the pursuit of math and science—even though she loves art. In a funny and perceptive graphic memoir, author-illustrator Sylvie Kantorovitz traces her first steps as an artist and teacher. The text captures her poignant questioning and her blossoming confidence, while the droll illustrations depict her making art as both a means of solace and self-expression. An affecting portrait of a unique childhood, Sylvie connects the ordinary moments of growing up to a life rich in hope and purpose.

I Feel Love

Editors: Julian Hanshaw, Krent Able
Publisher: SelfMadeHero
Release Date: Feb. 10 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 9 (Bookstores)
List Price: $22.99

Love makes the world go round. It can also turn your heart as black as coal. In the much anticipated follow up to their Eisner-nominated I Feel Machine, Julian Hanshaw and Krent Able curate a series of dystopian, satirical and psychological short fictions from artists Anya Davidson, Cat Sims, Benjamin Marra, and Kelsey Wroten that explore love’s dark, twisted underbelly, and offer a much-needed tonic to everything that is sweet, cloying, and conventional. As unflinching as it is honest, I Feel Love questions the one emotion that is meant to make us feel good—but often does the exact opposite. This is a book for those who have loved and lost in equal measures.

Pete Von Sholly’s History of Monsters

Cartoonist: Pete Von Sholly
Publisher: Clover Press, LLC
Release Date: Jan. 27 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 9 (Bookstores)
List Price: $29.99

Pete Von Sholly’s History of Monsters is a glorious look at the phenomenon of monsters as they figure in pop culture as well as from the anthropological, psychological and societal angles. This unprecedented illustrated pageant, presented as an accordion folded hardcover book, shows the actual history of monsters from man’s earliest fears of the darkness beyond the fire to today’s nightmares to see how these terrors found expression in myth, legend, and entertainment. But whatever the time or medium it’s always in the unknown where the monsters lurk and fester and wait. Step into Pete Von Sholly’s History of Monsters and experience the story as never before.

COVID Chronicles: A Comics Anthology

COVID Chronicles cover

Editors: Kendra Boileau, Rich Johnson
Artist: Gene Ambaum
Publisher: Graphic Mundi
Release Date: Feb. 17 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 15 (Bookstores)
List Price: $14.95

In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic brought the world to its knees. When we weren’t sheltering in place, we were advised to wear masks, wash our hands, and practice social distancing. We watched in horror as medical personnel worked around the clock to care for the sick and dying. Businesses were shuttered, travel stopped, workers were furloughed, and markets dropped. And people continued to die. Amid all this uncertainty, writers and artists from around the world continued to create comics, commenting directly on how individuals, societies, governments, and markets reacted to the worldwide crisis. COVID Chronicles: A Comics Anthology collects more than forty such short comics from a diverse set of creators, including indie powerhouses, mainstream artists, Ignatz- and Eisner–Award winners, and mainstream media cartoonists. In narrative styles ranging from realistic to fantastic, they tell stories about adjusting to working from home, homeschooling their kids, missing birthdays and weddings, and being afraid just to leave the house. They probe the failures of government leaders and the social safety net. And they dig into the racial bias and systemic inequities that this pandemic helped bring to light. We see what it’s like to get the virus and to live to tell about it, or to stand by helplessly as a loved one passes.

The Impact of Akira: A Manga (R)evolution

Writer: Remi Lopez
Publisher: Third Editions
Release Date:  Feb. 15 (Bookstores)
List Price: $29.95

A global manga phenomenon in the early 1990s, Akira is a futuristic depiction with apocalyptic elements set in a Neo-Tokyo on the brink of civil war. Katsuhiro Otomo’s work is a graphical and narrative treasure trove, confronting the revolutionary views of a disillusioned youth with the danger of scientific progress spiraling out of control. This book provides the social and historical context of Katsuhiro Otomo’s manga, which is reflected in its themes, and is intended to help the Western reader get a better grasp of this major Japanese comic book’s essence.

Mysterious Travelers: Steve Ditko and the Search for a New Liberal Identity

Writer: Zack Kruse
Publisher: University Press of Mississippi
Release Date:  Feb. 15 (Bookstores)
List Price: $30.00

Steve Ditko (1927–2018) is one of the most important contributors to American comic books. As the cocreator of Spider-Man and sole creator of Doctor Strange, Ditko made an indelible mark on American popular culture. Mysterious Travelers: Steve Ditko and the Search for a New Liberal Identity resets the conversation about his heady and powerful work. Always inward facing, Ditko’s narratives employed superhero and supernatural fantasy in the service of self-examination, and with characters like the Question, Mr. A, and Static, Ditko turned ordinary superhero comics into philosophic treatises. Many of Ditko’s philosophy-driven comics show a clear debt to ideas found in Ayn Rand’s Objectivism. Unfortunately, readers often reduce Ditko’s work to a mouthpiece for Rand’s vision. Mysterious Travelers unsettles this notion. In this book, Zack Kruse argues that Ditko’s philosophy draws on a complicated network of ideas that is best understood as mystic liberalism. Although Ditko is not the originator of mystic liberalism, his comics provide a unique window into how such an ideology operates in popular media.

My Life in Transition: A Super Late Bloomer Collection

Cartoonist: Julia Kaye
Publisher: Andrews McMeel
Release Date: Feb. 17 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 16 (Bookstores)
List Price: $14.99

My Life in Transition is a story that’s not often told about trans lives: what happens beyond the early days of transition. Both deeply personal and widely relatable, this collection illustrates six months of Julia’s life as an out trans woman—about the beauty and pain of love and heartbreak, struggling to find support from bio family and the importance of chosen family, moments of dysphoria and misgendering, learning to lean on friends in times of need, and finding peace in the fact that life keeps moving forward. After the nerve-wracking, anxiety-ridden early transition period has ended and the hormones have done their thing, this book shows how you can be trans and simply exist in society. You can be trans and have a successful future. You can be trans and have a normal life full of ups and downs. In our current political and social climate, this hopeful, accessible narrative about trans lives is both entertaining and vital.

Teddy

Teddy Cover

Created By: Laurence Luckinbill
Cartoonist: Eryck Tait
Publisher: Dead Reckoning
Release Date: Feb. 17 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 17 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.95

July 1918. Preparing to speak to an eager audience, 61-year-old Teddy Roosevelt receives the telegram that all parents of children who serve in war fear most: His son Quentin’s plane has been shot down in a dogfight over France. His fate is unknown. Despite rising fear for his youngest son, Teddy takes the stage to speak to his beloved fellow citizens. It is, he says, “my simple duty.” But the speech evolves from politics and the war, into an examination of his life, the choices he’s made, and the costs of his “Warrior Philosophy.” Overflowing with his love of nature, adventure, and justice, Teddy dramatically illustrates the life of one of America’s greatest presidents. His many accomplishments ranged from charging up San Juan Hill in Cuba as commander of the Rough Riders, to facing down U.S. corporate monopolies, to launching the Great White Fleet, building the Panama Canal, and the preservation of hundreds of millions of acres of natural American beauty. And finally, to the vigorous life at Sagamore Hill and his immense pride in a beloved and rambunctious family. Teddy reveals how even the greatest of men is still just a man, and how even the most modest man can grow to be great.

Tono Monogatari

Tono Monogatari Cover

Cartoonist: Shigeru Mizuki
Translator: Zack Davisson
Publisher: Drawn & Quarterly
Release Date: Mar. 3 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.95

Shigeru Mizuki―Japan’s grand master of yokai comics―adapts one of the most important works of supernatural literature into comic book form. The cultural equivalent of the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm, Tono Monogatari is a defining text of Japanese folklore and one of the country’s most important works of literature. This graphic novel was created during the later stage of Mizuki’s career, after he had retired from the daily grind of commercial comics to create personal, lasting works of art. Originally written in 1910 by folklorists and field researchers Kunio Yanagita and Kizen Sasaki, Tono Monogatari celebrates and archives legends from the Tono region. These stories were recorded as Japan’s rapid modernization led to the disappearance of traditional culture. This adaptation mingles the original text with autobiography: Mizuki attempts to retrace Yanagita and Sasaki’s path, but finds his old body is not quite up to the challenge of following in their footsteps. As Mizuki wanders through Tono he retells some of the most famous legends, manifesting a host of monsters, dragons, and foxes. In the finale, Mizuki meets Yanagita himself and they sit down to discuss their works.

Muhammad Ali, Kinshasa 1974

Writer: Jean-David Morvan
Artists: Rafael Ortiz (Illustrator), Abbas (Photographer)
Publisher: Titan Comics
Release Date: Feb. 24 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $29.99

On the 30th October 1974, the most famous boxing match of the 20 th Century took place. Nicknamed the “Rumble in the Jungle”, it pitted Muhammad Ali, desperate to win back his world champion belt, and George Foreman, the current holder, against each other. Foreman had just KO’d the only two boxers to have ever beaten Ali. By his own admission, Ali was terrified of facing him in the ring. Now, the photojournalist Abbas immortalises this legendary meeting, having kept his photos in his personal archives for 36 years before unveiling them to the world. In a cross between a documentary, photo report and graphic novel, this book reveals the context of the most powerful photographs taken by one of the greatest photographers of the Magnum Photos agency. Enriched by the testimony of Abbas himself, Jean-David Morvan’s script is rigorously brought to life by artist Rafael Ortiz.

Crumb’s World

Crumb's World

Cartoonist: Robert Crumb
Writer: Robert Storr
Publisher: David Zwirner Books
Release Date: Jan. 20 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $45.00

Crumb’s obsessions—from sex to the Bible, music, politics, and the vicissitudes and obscenities of daily life—are chronicled in this comprehensive book of work by the illustrious American comic artist. Instrumental in the formation of the underground comics scene in San Francisco during the 1960s and 1970s, Crumb has ruptured and expanded the boundaries of the graphic arts, redefining comics and cartoons as countercultural art forms. Presenting a slice of Crumb’s unique universe, this book features a wide array of printed matter culled from the artist’s five-decade career—tear sheets of drawings and comics taken directly from the publications where the works first appeared, magazine and album covers, broadsides from the 1960s and 1970s, tabloids from San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury, Oakland, Manhattan’s Lower East Side, and other counterculture enclaves, as well as exhibition ephemera. Complementing this volume are historical works from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries that have inspired Crumb and pages from his rarely seen sketchbooks from the 1970s and 1980s that reveal his exemplary skill as a draftsman. Documenting the critically acclaimed exhibition Drawing for Print: Mind Fucks, Kultur Klashes, Pulp Fiction & Pulp Fact by the Illustrious R. Crumbat David Zwirner, New York, in 2019, curated by Robert Storr, this publication offers an opportunity to immerse oneself in Crumb’s singular mind. In the accompanying text, Storr explores the challenging nature of some of Crumb’s work and the importance of artists who take on the status quo.

One Soul: Tenth Anniversary Edition

Cartoonist: Ray Fawkes
Publisher: Oni Press
Release Date: Feb. 24 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.99

One Soul details the lives of eighteen individuals throughout history whose lives unfold simultaneously. Comprised entirely of double-page spreads split into eighteen panels with each panel featuring one character’s life, cartoonist Ray Fawkes uses an experimental narrative structure to artfully craft eighteen linear stories into one non-linear masterpiece. Nominated for the 2012 Eisner Award in the “Graphic Album: New” category, One Soul is a powerful and life-affirming story about the way human beings all over the world are connected.

Crashpad

Cartoonist: Gary Panter
Publisher: Fantagraphics
Release Date: Feb. 10 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $39.99

In 2017, Gary Panter created an art installation, Hippie Trip, inspired by his first visit to a head shop in 1968. It expanded his mind to the possibilities of psychedelic art and music, analog crafts and drug culture. Crashpad is an extension of that installation and a riff on underground comics creators such as Zap’s R. Crumb, Victor Moscoso, Robert Williams, and other icons of that era. An art object itself, it will be reproduced as both a deluxe, oversized hardcover reproducing Panter’s pages at full size on heavy art paper, as full-color facsimiles of the originals. In addition, Crashpad will be printed as an old-fashioned and stapled black-and-white (with color covers) underground comic book, on newsprint, approximately 6″ x 9″, inserted into a sleeve within the hardcover so it can be removed and enjoyed on its own. A mix of color and black and white illustrations.

Hypnotwist / Scarlet By Starlight

Cartoonist: Gilbert Hernandez
Publisher: Fantagraphics
Release Date: Feb. 3 (Comics Shops) / Feb. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.99

In the Eisner Award-winning wordless comic (silent movie?) “Hypnotwist,” Hernandez’s B-movie star Fritz plays a character who doesn’t seem to be going anywhere, until she puts on a pair of glittery pumps. Her wanderings become increasingly surreal as she confronts motherhood, alcoholism, a sinister smiley face, cruelty, and her worst fate: “Killer” cameos! Includes 16 pages of previously unpublished, additional material. “Scarlet by Starlight” is a B movie that’s Star Trek meets Heart of Darkness. “Scientists,” or colonizers, are doing research, surrounded by “primitive” fauna they affectionately nickname or treat like pests. Fritz plays Scarlet, a peaceful, catlike humanoid with a mate and children. When she becomes infatuated with one of the scientists, the fragile web of relationships explodes into violence and death, calling into question who the “advanced, civilized” creatures really are. The two graphic novellas that comprise the book will be published together with two covers, so the two stories each end in the middle of the book (with the one you’re not reading being upside down). This very cool, handsome “Double Feature” package will be an essential item for Love and Rockets completists!

MARCH


 

The Parakeet

Cartoonist: Espé
Translator: Hannah Chute
Publisher: Graphic Mundi
Release Date:  Mar. 1 (Bookstores)
List Price: $21.95

Bastien is eight years old, and his mother is ill. She often has what his father and grandparents call “episodes.” She screams and fights, scratches, and spits, and has to be carted away to specialized clinics for frequent treatments. Bastien doesn’t like it when she goes, because when she comes home, she isn’t the same. She has no feelings, no desires, and not much interest in him. According to the doctors, Bastien’s mother suffers from “bipolar disorder with schizophrenic tendencies,” but he prefers to imagine her as a comic-book heroine, like Jean Grey, who may become Dark Phoenix and explode in a superhuman fury at any moment. Based on the creator’s own childhood experiences, The Parakeet is the story of a boy whose only refuge from life’s harsh realities lies in his imagination. In his eyes, we see the confusion and heartache he feels as he watches his mother’s illness worsen and the treatments fail. Through his eyes, we see how mental illness can both tear families apart and reaffirm the bonds of love. Poignant yet playful, The Parakeet follows Bastien’s struggle to accept the mother he has while wishing for the mother he needs.

The United States of Banana: A Graphic Novel

Writer: Giannina Braschi
Artist: Joakin Lindengren
Editors: Amanda M. Smith, Amy Sheeran
Publisher: Mad Creek Books
Release Date:  Mar. 1 (Bookstores)
List Price: $19.95

“I was a monument to immigration—now I’m a border control cop.” So admits the Statue of Liberty in Giannina Braschi’s United States of Banana, a rollicking and nakedly political allegory of US imperialism and Puerto Rican independence. Illustrated by Swedish comic book artist Joakim Lindengren and based on Braschi’s epic manifesto by the same title, the story takes us along on the madcap adventures of Zarathustra, Hamlet, and Giannina herself as they rescue the Puerto Rican prisoner Segismundo from under the skirt of the Statue of Liberty. Throughout their quest, the characters debate far-ranging political and philosophical subjects, spanning terrorism, global warming, mass incarceration, revolution, and love. The Marx Brothers, Pablo Neruda, Barack Obama, Disney characters and more make appearances in this stirring call to overthrow empire, liberate the imprisoned masses, and build a new country rooted in friendship, art, poetry, and laughter.

The Incredible Nellie Bly: Journalist, Investigator, Feminist, and Philanthropist

Writer: Luciana Cimino
Artist: Sergio Algozzino
Publisher: Abrams ComicArts
Release Date:  Mar. 2 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.99

Luciana Cimino’s meticulously researched graphic-novel biography tells Bly’s story through Miriam, a fictionalized female student at the Columbia School of Journalism in 1921. While interviewing the famous journalist, Miriam learns not only about Bly’s more sensational adventures, but also about her focus on self-reliance from an early age, the scathing letter to the editor that jump-started her career as a newspaper columnist, and her dedication to the empowerment of women. In fact, in 1884, Bly was one of the few journalists who interviewed Belva Ann Lockwood, who was the first woman candidate for a presidential election—a contest that was ultimately won by Grover Cleveland—and Bly predicted correctly that women would not get the vote until 1920.

Orwell

Writer: Pierre Christin
Artist: Sebastien Verdier
Publisher: SelfMadeHero
Release Date: Mar. 3 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 2 (Bookstores)
List Price: $22.99

George Orwell’s most celebrated work, 1984, and the prescient vision it contains of a society governed by Big Brother, predates the constant monitoring of people and data we are familiar with today by almost 70 years. But his life was every bit as fascinating and forward-looking as his books. Orwell studied at Eton, joined the police in Burma, fought in the Spanish Civil War, fiercely opposed Stalinism, and lived in London’s slums while working as a journalist. With illustrations by artists including Annie Goetzinger, Juanjo Guarnido, Enki Bilal, Manu Larcenet, Blutch, and André Juillard, Pierre Christin and Sébastian Verdier’s Orwell offers readers an intimate yet definitive portrait of England’s greatest political writer.

Billionaires

Cartoonist: Darryl Cunningham
Publisher: Drawn & Quarterly
Release Date: Mar. 17 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 2 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.95

In Billionaires, Darryl Cunningham offers an illuminating analysis of the origins and ideological evolutions of four key players in the American private sector―Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, media mogul Rupert Murdoch, and oil and gas tycoons Charles and David Koch. What emerges is a vital critique of American capitalism and the power these individuals have to assert a corrupting influence on policy-making, political campaigns, and society writ large.

Write It In Blood

Writer: Rory McConville
Artists: Joe Palmer, Chris O’Halloran, Declan Shalvey
Publisher: Image Comics
Release Date: Feb. 24 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 2 (Bookstores)
List Price: $14.99

On the eve of their retirement, two hitmen – Cosmo and Arthur Pryce – drive through the Texas countryside with the infamous Little Harkness in the trunk of their car. The brothers are meant to deliver Harkness to their boss, but matters become complicated when Arthur’s recklessness jeopardizes Cosmo’s retirement plans and puts a target on their backs. A tragicomic crime tale of family loyalty and broken dreams from RORY MCCONVILLE (Judge Dredd), JOE PALMER (2000 AD) and CHRIS O’HALLORAN (ICE CREAM MAN).

Feelings: A Story in Seasons

Cartoonist: Manjit Thapp
Publisher: Random House
Release Date:  Mar. 2 (Bookstores)
List Price: $21.99

Enter Manjit Thapp’s world, where you’ll find moods that change as quickly as the weather; the different shades of anxiety and hope that each new season brings; and the stages of joy and pain that fuel our growth. From the spark of possibility and jolt of creativity in High Summer, to the need for release from anxiety and pressure during Monsoon, to the desolation and numbness of Winter, Thapp implores us to consider the seasons of our own emotional journeys. Articulating and validating the range of feelings we all experience, this is a book that allows us to feel connected and comforted by the experiences that make us human.

The Call of Cthulhu and Dagon: A Graphic Novel

Created By: H. P. Lovecraft
Writer: Pete Katz
Artist: Dave Shephard
Publisher: Canterbury Classics
Release Date:  Mar. 2 (Bookstores)
List Price: $19.99

In this hauntingly illustrated adaptation of two of H. P. Lovecraft’s most famous stories from the Cthulhu Mythos, illustrator Dave Shephard captivates readers with stories of supernatural monsters so powerful that humanity is deemed irrelevant. The Call of Cthulhu and Dagon introduce the Great Old Ones, powerful deities who reside outside the normal dimensions of space-time, with physical forms that are impossible for the human mind to fathom. This handsome thread-bound edition presents these stories in rich and colorful detail, making it an accessible and entertaining gateway to Lovecraft’s world.

Crossroads: I Live Where I Like: A Graphic History

 

Writers: Koni Benson, Ashley E. Marais
Artist: André Trantraal, Nathan Trantraal
Publisher: PM Press
Release Date:  Mar. 2 (Bookstores)
List Price: $20.00

Drawing on over sixty life narratives, it tells the story of women who built and defended Crossroads, the only African informal settlement that successfully resisted the apartheid bulldozers in Cape Town. The story follows women’s organized resistance from the peak of apartheid in the 1970s to ongoing struggles for decent shelter today. Importantly, the history was workshopped with contemporary housing activists and women’s collectives who chose the most urgent and ongoing themes they felt spoke to and clarified challenges against segregation, racism, violence, and patriarchy standing between the legacy of the colonial and apartheid past and a future of freedom still being fought for. Presenting dramatic visual representations of many personalities and moments in the daily life of this township, the book presents a thoughtful and thorough chronology and archival newspapers, posters, photography, pamphlets, newsletters, and documentary clips that further illustrate the significance of the struggles at Crossroads for the rest of the city and beyond.

Catalogue Baby: A Memoir of (In)Fertility

 

Writer: Myriam Steinberg
Artist: Christache
Publisher: Page Two
Release Date:  Mar. 2 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.95

A few months after Myriam Steinberg turned forty, she decided she couldn’t wait any longer to become a mother. She made the difficult decision to begin the process of conceiving a child without a partner. With her family and friends to support her, she picked a sperm donor and was on her way. But Myriam’s journey was far from straightforward. She experienced the soaring highs and devastating lows of becoming pregnant and then losing her babies. She grappled with the best decision to make when choosing donors or opting for a medical procedure. She experienced first-hand the silences, loneliness, and taboos that come with experiences of fetal loss. Unafraid to publicize her experiences, though, she found that, in return, friends and strangers alike started sharing their own fertility stories with her. Although the lack of understanding and language around fetal loss and grief often made it very hard to navigate everyday life, she nonetheless found solace in the community around her who rallied to support her through her journey. Through it all, Myriam remained hopeful and here she unflinchingly shares her story with wry humour, honesty, and courage. Beautifully illustrated by Christache, Catalogue Baby is one woman’s story of tragedy and beating the odds and is a resource for all women and couples who are trying to conceive. Catalogue Baby is a compassionate portrait of fertility and infertility that hasn’t been seen before.

Charlie Adlard: Drawings + Sketches

 

Cartoonist: Charlie Adlard
Editor: Tim Pilcher
Publisher: BHP Comics
Release Date: Mar. 3 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 3 (Bookstores)
List Price: $26.95

With two decades of comic art behind Charlie Adlard, Drawings + Sketches selects work from the Walking Dead, Vampire State Building, Wendigo and much more offering insights into the stories and processes behind them.

Adlard has also worked on comics including 2000AD, Mars Attacks, The X-Files, Judge Dredd and X-Men, while The Walking Dead comics, which have recently come to an end, spawned the global smash series on AMC. His tenure as UK Comics Laureate ended earlier in 2019, taken over by Hannah Berry.

Run Home If You Don’t Want to Be Killed: The Detroit Uprising of 1943

Writer & Artist: Rachel Marie-Crane Williams
Publisher: The University of North Carolina Press
Release Date:  Mar. 8 (Bookstores)
List Price: $22.95

In the heat of June in 1943, a wave of destructive and deadly civil unrest took place in the streets of Detroit. The city was under the pressures of both wartime industrial production and the nascent civil rights movement, setting the stage for massive turmoil and racial violence. Thirty-four people were killed, most of whom were Black, and over half of these were killed by police. Two thousand people were arrested, and over seven hundred sustained injuries requiring treatment at local hospitals. Property damage was estimated to be nearly $2 million. With Run Home If You Don’t Want to Be Killed, Rachel Marie-Crane Williams delivers a graphic retelling of the racism and tension leading up to the violence of those summer days. By incorporating firsthand accounts collected by the NAACP and telling them through a combination of hand-drawn images, historical dialogue, and narration, Williams makes the history and impact of these events immediate, and in showing us what happened, she reminds us that many issues of the time—police brutality, state-sponsored oppression, economic disparity, white supremacy—plague our country to this day.

What Unites Us: The Graphic Novel

Writer: Dan Rather, Elliot Kirschner
Artist: Tim Foley
Publisher: First Second
Release Date: Feb. 17 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 9 (Bookstores)
List Price: $28.99

In this graphic novel adaptation of his bestselling collection of essays, legendary news anchor Dan Rather provides a voice of reason and explores what it means to be a true patriot. Brought to life in stunning color by artist Tim Foley, What Unites Us: The Graphic Novel takes apart the building blocks of this country, from the freedoms that define us, to the values that have transformed us, to the institutions that sustain us. Rather’s vast experience and his unique perspective as one of America’s most renowned newscasters shed light on who we were and who we are today, allowing us to see a possible future, where we are one country; united.

Girlsplaining

Cartoonist: Katja Klengel
Publisher: Archaia
Release Date: Mar. 3 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 9 (Bookstores)
List Price: $17.99

Cartoonist Katja Klengel tackles the subjects that have shaped her life: from body shaming to the exploration of female sexuality, from the representation of women in the media, and the social pressure on women who have not yet started a family all with a sense of humor, an open heart, and an unsparing candor.

Post York

Cartoonist: James Romberger, Crosby Romberger (Contributor)
Publisher: Berger Books
Release Date: Feb. 24 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 9 (Bookstores)
List Price: $17.99

Each morning he sails in search of food, crossing paths with others from this makeshift community–from outsiders like himself to the depraved and ruthless elite–all struggling to maintain a sense of normalcy in a city drowned in its past. But everything changes when he encounters both a mysterious woman and a trapped blue whale. Will they be each other’s salvation . . . or destruction? An eco-fiction fable of epic proportions, POST YORK is an expansion of the Eisner nominated one-shot, and includes an environmental fact sheet, and other bonus material.

Weeding

Cartoonist: Geneviève Lebleu
Publisher: Conundrum Press
Release Date:  Mar.15 (Bookstores)
List Price: $20.00

On a typical autumn afternoon, Martha hosts a group of middle-aged women at her suburban home. The day takes a sudden turn when Elisabeth, an estranged friend, turns up unexpectedly―and she isn’t the only unwanted guest at the tea party. Martha’s sister, Maureen, shows up after years of radio silence, along some painful memories and a lot of confusion. Martha disappears after a simple trip to the backyard for herbs. Martha is the most beloved of the women–but will any of the others be able to look past their own problems long enough to search for her?

Count

Cartoonist: Ibrahim Moustafa
Publisher: Humanoids
Release Date: Mar. 17 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 16 (Bookstores)
List Price: $17.99

Framed for treason and wrongfully imprisoned at the hands of a jealous and corrupt magistrate, Redxan Samud escapes his breathtaking hover-prison with only one thing on his mind: revenge. Disguised as a Man of Status and with a newfound fortune and his Automaton Retainer Unit (Aru) by his side, Samud sets out to dismantle the lives of those who have wronged him. But when innocent lives begin to get caught in the middle of his quest for vengeance, Samud will have to decide between using his new fortune for the good of the people or to pursue the revenge he so desperately desires.

Wika

Writer: Thomas Day
Artist: Oliver Ledroit
Publisher: Titan Comics
Release Date: Mar. 17 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 16 (Bookstores)
List Price: $39.99

A REWRITING OF THE FAIRY TALE GENRE IN STUNNING BAROQUE STEAMPUNK DECOR. After narrowly escaping an uprising that claims the lives of her parents, Wika, the last of a royal line of fairies, must evade the assassins on her trail long enough to discover the secret of her lineage. Uncover Thomas Day’s first comic book story – a dark tale of magic and mystery, with fairies, dwarves, goblins and elves, in a stunning epic fantasy world brought to life by the beautiful illustrations of Olivier Ledroit.

Mike Mignola: The Quarantine Sketchbook

 

Cartoonist: Mike Mignola
Publisher: Dark Horse Books
Release Date:  Mar. 3 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 16 (Bookstores)
List Price: $39.99

During the coronavirus quarantine, legendary Hellboy creator Mike Mignola posted original pencil sketches online and auctioned off the art to raise money for José Andres’ World Central Kitchen. The sketches went viral and were the talk of the comics internet. Now those sketches are published in print for the first time, with all profits going to the World Central Kitchen. This new, oversized hardcover collection is a must have for Mignola readers and art fans alike. The book features an introduction by Mignola, alongside sketches of Hellboy, beloved and unexpected pop culture characters, macabre chess pieces, gothic vegetable creatures, strange vampires, and more.

John Romita’s The Amazing Spider-Man Artisan Edition

Artist: John Romita
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Release Date:  Mar. 17 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 16 (Bookstores)
List Price: $39.99

Jazzy John Romita was for many the definitive artist on the Amazing Spider-Man. His sleek line work brought the web-slinger to life for a generation of fans. This volume collects issues 67, 68, 69, 71, 75, and 84 in their entirety. Additionally there is a beautiful gallery section of Romita extras. Like all of IDW’s award-winning Artist Edition style books, each page has been painstakingly scanned from the original art to ensure the finest possible reproduction, mimicking the experience of seeing Romita’s hand-drawn pages–it’s the next best thing to owning the art! While appearing to be in black and white, each page was scanned in color to mimic as closely as possible the experience of viewing the actual original art–for instance, corrections, blue pencils, paste-overs, all the little nuances that make original art unique.

A Journal of My Father

Cartoonist: Jiro Taniguchi
Publisher: Ponent Mon
Release Date:  Mar. 16 (Bookstores)
List Price: $26.00

The book opens with some childhood thoughts of Yoichi Yamashita spurred by a phone call at work informing him of his father’s death. So, he journeys back to his hometown after an absence of well over a decade during which time he has not seen his father. But as the relatives gather for the funeral and the stories start to flow, Yoichi’s childhood starts to resurface. The Spring afternoons playing on the floor of his father’s barber shop, the fire that ravaged the city and his family home, his parents’ divorce and a new ‘mother’. Through confidences and memories shared with those who knew him best, Yoichi rediscovers the man he had long considered an absent and rather cold father.

Women In Jazz Graphic Novels: Billie Holiday

Writers: Ebony Gilbert, David Calcano
Publisher: Fantoons
Release Date: Mar. 10 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 16 (Bookstores)
List Price: $25.99

Dive into the celebrated life of “Lady Day” with this fully-illustrated graphic novel that tells the story of Billie Holiday’s rapid—and, at times, grueling—rise to become one of the best musicians who ever lived. From her days as a young entertainer performing for small jazz clubs in Harlem, to headlining sold-out shows at Carnegie Hall, every trouble and triumph of Billie Holiday’s bold, influential career is featured in this graphic novel from Fantoons. Throughout the book’s 144 pages of dazzling color illustrations, readers will revisit Billie’s peak years as she helped lead the transition from the Harlem Renaissance to the iconic Swing Era alongside some of the top names in jazz—including Artie Shaw, Lester Young, and Count Basie. Meanwhile, readers will learn the true history behind the making and recording of some of Billie’s most-classic hits, like “God Bless the Child,” and “Strange Fruit,” the latter of which is considered to be the first protest song of the civil rights era.

Red Rock Baby Candy

Cartoonist: Shira Spector
Publisher: Fantagraphics
Release Date: Mar. 24 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $29.99

Shira Spector, whose drawing is visceral, symbolic and naturalistic, literally paints a vivid portrait of the most eventful 10 years of her life, encompassing her tenacious struggle to get pregnant, the emotional turmoil of her father’s cancer diagnosis and eventual death, and her recollections of past relationships with her parents and her partner. Set in a kaleidoscope of Montreal and Toronto, Red Rock Baby Candy begins in subtle, tonal shades of black ink and introduces color slowly over the next 50 pages until it explodes into a glorious full color palette. The visual storytelling eschews traditional comics panels in favor of a series of unique page compositions that convey both a stream of consciousness and the tactile reality of life, both the subjective impressions of the author at each moment of the life she depicts and the objective series of events that shape her narrative.

Heaven No Hell

Heaven No Hell

Cartoonist: Michael DaForge
Publisher: Drawn & Quarterly
Release Date: Mar. 24 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $21.95

In the past ten years, Michael DeForge has released eleven books. While his style and approach have evolved, he has never wavered from taut character studies and incisive social commentary with a focus on humor. He has deeply probed subjects like identity, gentrification, fame, and sexual desire. Each of these stories shows the inner turmoil of an ordinary person coming to grips with a world vastly different than their initial perception of it. The humor is searing and the emotional weight lingers long after the story ends. Heaven No Hell collects DeForge’s best work yet. His ability to dig into a subject and break it down with beautiful drawings and sharp writing makes him one of the finest short story writers of the past decade, in comics or beyond. Heaven No Hell is always funny, sometimes sad, and continuously innovative in its deconstruction of society.

Yokohama Station SF

Writer: Yuba Isukari
Artist: Tatsuyuki Tanaka
Publisher: Yen ON
Release Date: Mar. 31 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $20.00

In a future where Yokohama Station covers most of the island of Honshu, there are two ways of life-inside the station and outside. Life within the station is strictly controlled, and those who fail to follow the rules are expelled to the harsher world outside. When one of these exiles receives a temporary ticket to go into the station, he’s also given a mission to find the leader of a group determined to free humanity.

I Never Promised You a Rose Garden

Cartoonist: Mannie Murphy
Publisher: Fantagraphics
Release Date: Mar. 17 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.99

This work of graphic nonfiction, told in the style of an illustrated diary, begins as an affectionate reminiscence of the author’s 1990s teenage infatuation with the late actor River Phoenix but morphs into a remarkable, sprawling account of the city of Portland and state of Oregon’s dark history of white nationalism. Murphy details the relationship between white supremacist Tom Metzger (former KKK Grand Wizard and founder of the White Aryan Resistance) and the “Rose City” street kids like Ken Death that infiltrated Van Sant’s films — a relationship that culminates in an infamous episode of Geraldo. Murphy brilliantly weaves 1990s alternative culture, from Kurt Cobain and William Burroughs to Keanu Reeves and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, with two centuries of the Pacific Northwest’s shameful history as a hotbed for white nationalism: from the Whitman massacre in 1847 and the Ku Klux Klan’s role in Portland’s city planning in the early 1900s to the brutal treatment of Black people displaced in the 1948 Vanport flood and through the 2014 armed standoff with Cliven Bundy’s cattle ranch. In Murphy’s personal reflections and heart-racing descriptions of scenes like infamous campfire kiss in My Own Private Idaho, the artist’s story becomes a moral anchor to a deeply amoral regional history and marks the incredible debut of a talented new voice to the graphic medium. Two-color illustrations throughout.

The Shadow of a Man

Shadow of a Man Cover

Writer: Benoit Peeters
Artist: Francois Schuiten
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Release Date: Jan. 27 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $19.99

Newly married Albert Chamisso is having horrific nightmares. Eccentric doctor Polydore Vincent is able to give him relief, but the experimental treatment has a strange side effect: from now on, Albert’s shadow will be cast in color. This seemingly inconsequential development brings his life crashing down, ultimately losing him his job and his new wife. Evicted from his home, he moves to the outskirts of Blossfeldtstad where he meets the beautiful and talented Minna, who will help turn his curse into a gift. Together they will create something special, a performance of light and shadow unlike any seen before. The Shadow of a Man is an unforgettable, retro-futurist tale of bittersweet noir romance.

The Fall, Volume 1

Cartoonist: Jared Muralt
Publisher: Image Comics
Release Date:  Mar. 17 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $16.99

After just losing his wife, one father will have to face a world in freefall; shaken to its core by an economic, social, political and health crisis without precedent. Facing seemingly unreal and very unexpected dangers, he will do whatever it takes to protect his loved ones in a country on the brink of collapse. In this internationally acclaimed series, Jared Muralt not only tells the story of one family struggling to survive, but also questions the very reasons that brought mankind to this apocalypse.

Electric Century

Writers: Mikey Way, Shaun Simon
Artist: Toby Cypress
Publisher: Z2 Comics
Release Date: Jan. 27 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $19.99

Johnny Ashford, former sitcom-star, drives drunk through a storefront and gets tossed in jail. His aspiring actress girlfriend bails him out and he begins seeing a hypnotherapist, who sends him to his “happy place”: 1980’s Atlantic City, where he relives his childhood on the boardwalk and the Electric Century casino, hardly noticing shadowy specters all around. His addiction shifts from alcohol to his hypnotic trips to the boardwalk. When his girlfriend winds up there, Johnny has to figure out how to save their lives and escape the Electric Century …

The 27 Run: Crush

Writer: Justin Zimmerman
Artists: Ethan Claunch
Editor: Tyler Chin-Tanner
Publisher: A Wave Blue World
Release Date: Mar. 10 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $25.00

As if 27 enormous Monsters ruling over post-apocalyptic Earth wasn’t enough, now there’s a new threat from outer space: Crawlies, a legion of voracious alien predators eating everything in their path. Humanity’s only chance is the Pilot Beti, her incredible Mech and her best friend, a telepathic, telekinetic dog named E.K. And Beti will face an even bigger challenge: the return of a long-lost flame. Filled with jaw-dropping visuals, spine-tingling romance and laugh-out-loud comedy, see why THE 27 RUN: CRUSH continues what Steve Orlando (WONDER WOMAN) calls, “A wasteland tale energized with dark humor and fantastic creatures.”

The Art of Popeye Artists and Comic Strippers’: Versions of the Spinach-Eating Superhero

Art of Popeye Artists and Comic Strippers

Writer: Craig Yoe
Artist: E.C. Segar
Publisher: Clover Press, LLC
Release Date:  Mar. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $29.99

This hardcover collection celebrates the incredible art of Popeye illustrated by scores of artists over the years with a special focus on the Popeye’s Cartoon Club by King Features Syndicate. Also included are highlights from The National Cartoonists Society’s celebration of Popeye’s 90th year, and a collection of rare cover illustrations by popular counter-culture artists done for IDW comics.

Edward Hopper: The Story of His Life

Writer: Sergio Rossi
Artist: Giovanni Scarduelli
Publisher: Prestel
Release Date: Mar. 24 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.95

This groundbreaking graphic novel delves into the life of the acclaimed artist Edward Hooper, whose iconic works depict quintessentially American scenes and experiences. While many of Hopper’s most acclaimed works have been embraced by American culture, the artist himself rejected much of the lyricism and romance that his audience imposed on his paintings. This unique overview of Hopper’s life and career offers a fascinating and unflinching portrait of an artist trying to establish himself and define his own style. Using Hopper’s own words as a jumping off point, the book traces his roots as an art student and commercial illustrator; his life-changing time in Europe; his rocky relationship with his wife Jo, and his incredible success later in life. It also shows how, as he became increasingly famous, he grew more taciturn and resolute in his disparagement of American society and the labels thrust on him. Using clean lines and a palette that mimics Hopper’s own, the book’s illustrations reflect the style and substance of the artist’s life–and help create a refreshing reconsideration of a creative genius who never wavered from his vision.

Curtiss Hill

Cartoonist: Pau
Publisher: Dark Horse Books
Release Date: Mar. 10 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $19.99

Curtiss Hill is a millionaire, philanthropist, and famed dog-racecar driver. His rival on the speedway is obsessed with winning and will claim the prize at any cost. The key to Curtiss’s success lies with his engineer, a cat with an expertise in motors whose access to infinite resources ensures that his racecars are unbeatable. But on the day before the biggest race of the season, he’s gone missing! Rumor has it, he’s gone off to war! Meanwhile, an independent photojournalist is on Curtiss’s tail, seeking to expose the truth behind his wealth and prestige. As Curtiss searches for his friend, a civil war between the cats and dogs escalates. Soon, the four will meet and begin the most important race of their lives–a race to victory–for life, liberty, and freedom! Celebrated Spanish writer and artist Pau (The Atlas and Axis Saga, Baboon!) explores themes of sacrifice, unity, and redemption under the backdrop of racecar driving for an unforgettable tale of friendship, love, and hope.

Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys: The Death of Nancy Drew

Death of Nancy Drew

Writer: Anthony Del Col
Artist: Joe Eisma
Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment
Release Date: Mar. 10 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 23 (Bookstores)
List Price: $19.99

Teen detectives Frank and Joe Hardy have investigated many crimes in their lives, but nothing that hits this close to home. Their best friend died mysteriously after taking down a major crime organization. They must put together the clues to uncover the truth about this shocking crime, but the clues lead them to a stunningly unexpected direction!

Casa Rodeo

Cartoonist: Thom
Publisher: POW POW Press
Release Date:  Mar. 26 (Bookstores)
List Price: $19.95

It’s business as usual at the residence of Titus and his motley crew. Champagne baths, reckless scientific experimentations, casual littering. It’s all fun and games, until their house decides it has had enough and goes looking for a better life… leaving the gang without a place to call theirown! Will Titus and his friends find a new home, or convince their old one to come back? Thom shows an ever-growing mastery of visual storytelling in this brilliant follow-up to his 2017 debut VII. Once again eschewing words altogether, the Montréal-based author channels the chaotic yet precise slapstick of Chuck Jones’ Looney Tunes while infusing it with a subtle sense of existential dread. Casa Rodeo is about finding one’s place in the world, both literally and figuratively.

YOU DIED: An Anthology of the After Life

Editors: Andrea Purcell, Kel McDonald
Publisher: Iron Circus Comics
Release Date:  (Comics Shops) / Mar. 30 (Bookstores)
List Price: $20.00

Death ― the one aspect of life we have in common ― is waiting for everyone, yet our practices, beliefs, myths, and stories about it are as diverse as we are. YOU DIED celebrates these vibrant cultural expressions of the great equalizer in a thrilling, life-affirming whirlwind of a book, an inspirational volume to be treasured through times of both loss and abundance (and every day in between). At turns both brazen and insightful, morose and optimistic, YOU DIED asks a wide array of cartoonist newbloods and all-stars to relate their most unforgettable tales of death and what comes next. Filled with beautifully illustrated accounts of grief and mourning, ancient myths, memorial rites around the globe, afterlife in the far reaches of space, and the simple and touching ways both the living and the dead carry on, this lively collection starts a comforting and much-needed dialogue about death as a natural part of life. Featuring an introduction by death positivity movement pioneer and activist mortician CAITLIN DOUGHTY and a murderer’s row of comics talent including RAINA TELGEMEIER, SHAE BEAGLE, and LISA STERLE.

North Star

Cartoonist: Tom Herpich
Publisher: Adhouse Books
Release Date:  Mar. 30 (Bookstores)
List Price: $6.95

From three-time Emmy Award winning writer and storyboard artist on TVs Adventure Time, Over the Garden Wall and Steven Universe, comes an experimental illustrated narrative exploring easy answers, missteps, and the potential for self-correction. Dense, poetic and ambiguous, North Star offers no easy answers, or even easy questions, but its strange and beautiful imagery invites and rewards repeated readings and careful contemplation. Thomas Herpich returns to his critically acclaimed comic making. His previous efforts included White Clay.

Shadow Life

Writer: Hiromi Goto
Artist: Ann Xu
Publisher: First Second
Release Date: Mar. 31 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 30 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.99

When Kumiko’s well-meaning adult daughters place her in an assisted living home, the seventy-six-year-old widow gives it a try, but it’s not where she wants to be. She goes on the lam and finds a cozy bachelor apartment, keeping the location secret even while communicating online with her eldest daughter. Kumiko revels in the small, daily pleasures: decorating as she pleases, eating what she wants, and swimming in the community pool. But something has followed her from her former residence―Death’s shadow. Kumiko’s sweet life is shattered when Death’s shadow swoops in to collect her. With her quick mind and sense of humour, Kumiko, with the help of friends new and old, is prepared for the fight of her life. But how long can an old woman thwart fate?

Sea of Dreams: Cixin Liu Graphic Novels #1

Sea of Dreams Cover

Created By: Cixin Liu
Writer: Rodolfo Santullo
Artist: Jok
Publisher: Talos
Release Date:  Mar. 30 (Bookstores)
List Price: $17.99

An annual ice sculpture festival draws the attention of an extraterrestrial visitor, who learns how to create such art and decides to use local resources to sculpt a piece in a gesture of goodwill. All the water in the ocean is sent to the stratosphere, where the ice sculptor uses splendid techniques to create crystal dominoes scattered by a giant of the cosmos. In the world of the ice sculptor, art is the sole reason for civilization’s existence. After the ice sculptor creates the pinnacle of beauty, but also brings forth devastation and disaster, humanity decides during Earth’s last breaths to fight for their survival. The first of sixteen new graphic novels from Liu Cixin and Talos Press, Sea of Dreams is an epic tale of the future that all science fiction fans will enjoy.

Flash Forward: An Illustrated Guide to Possible (and Not So Possible) Tomorrows

Flash Forward Cover

Writer: Rose Eveleth, Sophie Goldstein (Contributor), Matt Lubchansky (Contributor)
Publisher: Abrams ComicArts
Release Date: Mar. 31 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 30 (Bookstores)
List Price: $24.99

Flash Forward: An Illustrated Guide to Possible (And Not So Possible) Tomorrows takes readers on a journey from speculative fiction to speculative “fact.” Producer and host of the podcast Flash Forward, Rose Eveleth poses provocative questions about our future, which are brought to life by 12 of the most imaginative comics and graphic artists at work, including Matt Lubchanksy, Sophie Goldstein, Ben Passmore, and Box Brown. Each artist chooses a subject close to their heart—Ignatz Award nominee Julia Gfrörer, for instance, will imagine a future in which robots make art—and presents their chosen future in their own style. Drawing on her interviews with experts in various fields of study, Eveleth will then report on what is complete fantasy and what is only just out of reach in insightful essays following the comics. This book introduces compelling visions of the future and vividly explores the human consequences of developing technologies. Flash Forward reveals how complicated, messy, incredible, frightening, and strange our future might be.

Storm Fairy

Cartoonist: Osamu Tezuka
Publisher: Digital Manga Publishing
Release Date: Mar. 17 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 30 (Bookstores)
List Price: $15.95

Storm fairy is a collection of three short stories by legendary mangaka Osamu Tezuka.

Crime and Punishment

Cartoonist: Osamu Tezuka
Publisher: Digital Manga Publishing
Release Date: Mar. 17 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 30 (Bookstores)
List Price: $12.95

In Russia, on the eve of the revolution, a young student named Raskolnikov murders an old pawnbroker over a pocket watch. Although an innocent man is quickly arrested for the crime, Raskolnikovs’s own published essay – suggesting that people who are “extra-ordinary” are above such things as “right” and “wrong” – draws the suspicion of judge Porfiry. Who will catch up to Raskolnikov first? Porfiry … or his own guilty conscience?

Jimbo: Adventures in Paradise

Cartoonist: Gary Panter
Publisher: New York Review Comics
Release Date: Mar. 31 (Comics Shops) / Mar. 30 (Bookstores)
List Price: $29.95

Gary Panter is one of America’s great creative forces: the illustrator for the trailblazing punk magazine Slash, set designer for the legendary TV show Pee-wee’s Playhouse, and one of the wildest, most innovative comics artists of all time. Jimbo: Adventures in Paradise is a leap into the uproarious life of Panter’s ever-cheerful punk everyman, Jimbo, and a perfect introduction to Panter’s ever-shifting style. Amid a jumbled cityscape of rundown New York City streets and futuristic Los Angeles freeways, Jimbo crowd-surfs at a riot, makes amends with Ernie Bushmiller’s Nancy, and rescues his pal Smoggo’s sister from giant cockroaches, all while the world teeters between extravagance and apocalypse. Veering from the crude to the elegant, the wise to the funny, Jimbo: Adventures in Paradise proves Panter is a master of cartooning, and still way ahead of the rest of us.

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