Duane Murray and Shawn Daley will deliver an all-ages tale of childhood grief, imagination and the power of comic books in the mixed-color graphic novel Better Place from Top Shelf.

The synopsis is pretty touching:

“This sidekick misses his superhero… After hearing that his grandfather has gone to a “better place”, a boy sets off on a grand adventure to find him, dressed as his favourite comic book character.

“Dylan just moved to a new house, with no friends, and a mother who doesn’t have time for him. Luckily, he has his grandad. Together, they are Red Rocket and Kid Cosmo, who save the universe every day with the power of imagination! But one day, Dylan learns that his grandad is suddenly gone… to a “better place.” Now, Kid Cosmo will have to save the day, all by himself.”

Better Place is a debut graphic novel for the creative team of Murray and Daley. While there are few comics works to Murray’s credit, Daley has already cut his teeth with contributions to anthologies; illustrated Samurai Grandpa with writer Eastin DeVerna, and Ogre with Bob Salley for Source Point Press; as well as his own self-produced short works.

This book will also feature guest art contributions from established names including Matt Kindt, Jeff Lemire, and Nate Powell.

The mixed-color graphic novel will feature black and white art with partial use of color to depict the contrasts between the harsh realities of life and the promise of the imagination. The sample pages we have seen so far look pretty stunning.

Better Place

Check out more of the preview images below. Better Place is due out in August 2021.