Monday, November 02, 2009

Reviewing the Mail: Week of 10/31

The actual list will begin after the ritual disclaimer: These are books that came in my mail last week, sent by various publicists in the hope that I'll review them. I get more books than I could ever review -- leaving aside the currently-large pile of books I read intending to review that I haven't managed to write about yet -- and so these will not all be covered in depth. So, to make sure I do mention everything, I run these posts every Monday morning.

Or, in bullet-point form:
  • I haven't read these books.
  • I might never read these books.
  • This is not a "review."
But here's what I saw this week:

Nightchild is the third book in James Barclay's "Chronicles of the Raven" fantasy series, which has been confusing me for several months now. Pyr is publishing the books of this series -- originally published in the UK about a decade ago -- in quick succession, but have also been sending me both finished book and bound I've been seeing each of these books at least twice, and not necessarily in order. But this one has a big "3" on the spine, which I am entirely in favor of. And this book will hit stores on November 10th. I haven't read these books, but they're the kind of fantasy that's not quite epic -- though definitely secondary-world -- that I always faintly assume has a gaming basis, somewhere far in the background. (Though I could easily be wrong.)

I don't actually have a copy of Fairies Art Studio by David Riche, since it won't be published (by Watson-Guptill) until March of 2010. But I do have a letter and color photocopies of sample pages, which reminds me of my days back in the book clubs. (This is exactly what I would see for art books in those days -- though I'd have wanted to see it much earlier than this; I bet the print run has already been set, for one thing.) It's a book about drawing fairies digitally -- as far as I can tell, there's nothing about drawing using the implements traditionally associated with that term -- and contains art by Myrean Pettit and Yishan Li. I'm not an artist, and I only have a small sample, but I'm not massively impressed so far. But, if you want to draw fairies with your computer, I doubt you have many choices in book tutorials -- and this one looks very professional and detailed.

Vatican Hustle is the first graphic novel from Greg Houston, a new cartoonist from Baltimore. (No word on whether there's a similar Young Turk from Houston called Greg Baltimore.) The art is highly stylized, drawing a bit from Munoz (perhaps via Giffen) as well as from Wolverton and the '80s RAW crowd. The story looks to be equally stylized; it's a '70s Blaxpoitation movie in comics form. That's an awful lot of style for one book.... This will be published by NBM in December.

And last for this week is the eighth collection of Osamu Tezuka's Black Jack stories, coming November 17th from Vertical. (I reviewed the first and second volumes of the series for ComicMix, and I expect this book is broadly similar to those flamboyantly entertaining pieces of pulp craziness.)

1 comment:

Paul D said...

I bounced off the first of the James Barclay novels because it seemed to be very gaming influenced. I think the spell names were capitalized, etc. It was the first one he wrote, and I assume he got better, but the influences were pretty obvious in it.

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