Sunday, February 17, 2013

Incoming Books: February 16

Yesterday, my two sons -- almost-15 Thing 1 and newly-12 Thing 2 -- and I went into NYC, primarily to catch a show at the New Victory Theater [1]. As usual, we also ate lunch [2] when we got in, and I also pulled them over to Midtown Comics, which was having a big 30% off nearly all book-like objects sale for the Presidents' Day weekend.

The ostensible reason for going there was to replenish my manga drawer (I'm still running the tell-me-the-story-of-the-prose-book-you-just-read, get-a-manga offer to both boys, though Thing 1 doesn't take advantage of it very often), but of course I got a bunch of things for myself, since I was there and there was a sale on and I'm not made of stone:

The Shadow: Blood and Judgment which collects the '80s DC miniseries by Howard Chaykin, which I remember fondly. But I'm also buying this in hopes it leads to reprints of the ongoing series that followed -- written by Andy Helfer with art by Bill Sienkiewicz and then by Kyle Baker -- because that was utterly insane and wonderful, something completely different and unexpected. (And, also, I had copies of the original comics and of the old DC trade paperback, both lost in the flood of '11.)

A book that seems to be titled Attitude Featuring Andy Singer "No Exit", which is a collection of Singer's mostly single-panel No Exit strips, published in 2004. It was on the sale shelves at a truly bargain-basement price, and I love collections of newspaper cartoons.

The Adventures of Superhero Girl, the new graphic novel by Faith Erin Hicks, creator of Friends With Boys, The War at Elsmere, Zombies Calling and others. The concept of this one looked interesting -- very down-to-earth, slice-of-life superheroics -- and Hicks feels like a creator who keeps getting better with each project.

Grandville Bete Noire, the third of Bryan Talbot's "Detective Inspector LeBrock of Scotland Yard Scientific-Romance Thriller" stories, set in an alternate world where steampunk England only just freed itself from the Napoleonic empire after two hundred years, oh, and everyone is anthropomorphic talking animals. (See my reviews of the first two: Grandville and Grandville Mon Amour.)

Delphine, the new book from Richard Sala, which I hadn't realized existed until two days ago (even though it came out in late 2012).

And Nelson, a giant theme anthology of British comics creators edited by Rob Davis and Woodrow Phoenix -- it all tells the story of one woman's life in modern London, from 1968 to 2011, with each of the 54 stories covering one day in that life. I heard about this a while ago, but this was the first time I'd seen a copy.

[1] The Mark of Zorro, a very swashbuckling show by the Scottish company Visible Fictions. My sons really liked it, but I found it a bit old-fashioned (the story of Zorro, presented straight, is inevitably very pulpy and predictable in a very just-post-Victorian way, and it particularly annoyed me that Isabella, the heroine, gets to do exactly nothing but be right, be ignored, and be rescued), particularly compared to the same company's Jason and the Argonauts, which we saw a few years back. Zorro is a particularly great show for boys a bit younger than mine, I think -- if you're in the New York area, have sons/nephews/wards aged 7-12 and want an outing in the next week, this is a great choice.

[2] At Schnipper's, which has rapidly become our second-favorite place in the city. (After only A Salt & Battery, which is way down in the Village, so we've only gotten there a couple of times.) Schnipper's has an excellent mac and cheese -- Thing 2 and I share an order of it -- good burgers, fine shakes, and (we've just discovered) quite good cheese fries as well. I am so glad that I've been able to replace McD's -- which used to be our default place to eat before a show when the boys were smaller -- with something better and tastier and right across from the bus terminal.

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