This Wednesday, gay comic book creators Greg Lockard and Tim Fish will release their new graphic novel, Liebestrasse, through ComiXology Originals. The book follows two men who fall in love during the rise of fascism in 1930s Germany, including what happens when the Nazis come to power and one of them is arrested, then disappeared.
Sam, an American banker, meets Philip, a German art critic, while living and working in Berlin. The end of the Weimar Republic marks the end of their romance when Philip is arrested and Sam is forced to flee Berlin shortly thereafter. When he eventually returns to Berlin for answers after post-war reconstruction begins in 1952, his survivor’s guilt and broken heart send him on a fool’s errand that will take him across the city, country, and world — all of which have been changed by the atrocities committed during the Holocaust, forever.
“After touring the campsite at Auschwitz, I sat on a bench in the Planty Krakowskie outside the walled city of Krakow, in a surreal daze,” Fish said in a statement. “To escape the horror I struggled to comprehend, my mind kept jumping back to the week prior while I visited the camp Theresienstadt. The Nazis had made a significant effort in maintaining the camp conditions and records in an effort to convince the Red Cross they were treating its inhabitants humanely.”
He added, “As a result, the camp museum contains dozens of biographies of its residents. While I was there, it became obvious to me who the gay men were. Instead of facts such as ‘had three children,’ it said things such as ‘was active in the Berlin theatre.’ Sitting in the Planty, I kept thinking of those men…how happy they were in a progressive and tolerant society, and how abruptly it ended. I drew several sketches of a couple, broken apart by the war…one German, sent to a camp, and one American, forced to flee Berlin.”
“There have been countless comics, books, films and television shows about Germany’s descent into fascism because it’s essential that these stories continue to be told,” said Lockard, also in a statement. “Tim and I have been friends and collaborators for over 15 years and we co-created this graphic novel to shine a light on a troubling period of world history, from a perspective that will hopefully allow for new discussions and thinking. This is the story of two gay men in Nazi Germany, told by two gay comic creators living in America. We hope the story of Liebestrasse will resonate with readers everywhere.”
ComiXology Head of Content Chip Mosher said, “Liebestrasse is an incredibly poignant love story wrapped in history that feels simultaneously of the past and the present. Greg Lockard and Tim Fish deftly tell the story of a tumultuous time for the LGBTQ community in WWII Germany, and it is an honor to be able to bring this story to the world via comiXology Originals.”
Liebestrasse began as a 12-page historical LGBTQ romance that the creative team self-published as a mini comic. It first came to ComiXology’s attention at Thought Bubble 2018 and now, the entire graphic novel will be available to coincide with this year’s festival.
In addition to writing by Greg Lockard and art by Tim Fish, Liebestrasse features colors by Héctor Barros, letters by Lucas Gattoni, and editing by Will Dennis. The book will be available to read at no additional cost for Amazon Prime, Kindle Unlimited, and ComiXology Unlimited members, and will also be available for purchase on Kindle and ComiXology on Wednesday, Nov. 6.