Earlier this year Image Comics announced they were taking their single-issue distribution to the direct market from longtime partner Diamond Comics Distributors to Lunar Distribution. At the time bookstore distribution for Image Comics collections and graphic novels remained with Diamond Books, but as of next year that will no longer be the case, at least in the United States. Image announced today that they’ve inked a deal with Simon & Schuster for distribution of their graphic novel catalog to U.S.-based bookstores. Diamond Books will remain Image’s bookstore distributor outside of the U.S.

Image’s Eric Stephenson cited the publisher’s growth as the need for a change in bookstore distribution:

“For the past 20 years we have been able to establish a foothold for our trade paperbacks and graphic novels in the book market thanks in no small part to the support and efforts of Diamond Book Distributors,” said Eric Stephenson, Publisher at Image Comics. “Over time, our needs and backlist of titles have grown and our increasing footprint in the marketplace has us excited to take this next step with Simon & Schuster to build a more robust infrastructure for our titles there.”

Simon & Schuster’s Michael Perlman seconded Stephenson’s enthusiasm at the new partnership:

“We are delighted to welcome Image Comics to our family of distribution clients,” said Michael Perlman, Senior Vice President, General Manager of Simon & Schuster Publisher Services. “We look forward to partnering with them to help share their graphic novels with readers throughout North America.”

It’s unclear at this point if Diamond Books will still offer Image collections and graphic novels as a wholesaler, as Diamond’s comics distribution arm has continued to do with Image’s single-issues to the direct market. The announcement from Image makes clear that this new Simon & Schuster deal does not impact single-issue distribution.

The departure of Image from Diamond Books is certainly a big deal for the distributor, whose website lists Image among their top publishers. That said, Diamond Books still distributes titles to bookstores for comics publishers like Dynamite, Udon, Aftershock, Panini, and many more. 

Hope you’re all keeping your distribution scorecards updated.


  1. @Carter – Popverse included January of 2024, so I would assume that is when the switch-over occurs. I assume that the Diamond/Image bookstore contract expires at the end of the 2023 calendar year or very shortly thereafter, so that would appear to be the most likely date.

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