Thursday, December 17, 2015

Incoming Books: Early December

My usual comics shop, Midtown, had a great Cyber Monday sale, so I took advantage of that. The books arrived after about a week, and now, nearly a week after that, I'm finally listing them here.

These are all things I paid actual money for, so they're at least somewhat recommended -- though, except for one, I haven't read any of them yet.

Batman: The Jiro Kuwata Batmanga Vol. 2 collects another cluster of odd Batman stories from and for the Japanese market in the late '60s, inspired almost equally by the TV show, Dick Sprang, and Osamu Tezuka. I reviewed both the first collection and the very quirky look-at-these-weird-pages-of-comics book that Chip Kidd designed and edited a few years before that. (As you might expect, I preferred the one that presented someone else's work cleanly to the one that used someone else's work as a thing to point and gawk at.)

Satellite Sam, Vol. 3 seems to be the finale of this story by Matt Fraction and Howard Chaykin, which shows that I wasn't paying attention. (I thought it was planned to be ongoing; it certainly seemed to have enough plot threads for that.) See my review of the first volume for more details.

Descender, Vol. 1: Tin Stars reprints the beginning of a newish SF comics series by Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen. I've liked Lemire's indy stuff for a while, and this looks like it's trying to split the difference between that and his Big Two work -- not entirely depressive, drawn by someone else, but not in the superhero mode either.

Aama, Vol. 1: The Smell of Warm Dust is a book I bought because of trust in the publisher (the small British house Self Made Hero, which hasn't steered me wring yet), because I read good things about it somewhere I can't now remember, and because of interest in the creator, Frederik Peeters. (Peeters drew a very distinctive book called Sandcastle from someone else's script, and wrote & drew a more conventional but good book called Blue Pills as well.) This is some manner of SF, as well, and I'm interested in how comics use SF stuff.

Monsieur Jean : From Bachelor to Father is a big omnibus of the series of French albums by Dupuy and Berberian, which I suspect contains some/all/most of the material collected in the previous book Get a Life and might even have something from the (I think later) book The Singles Theory. Jean is a French novelist of around thirty, and he's a semi-autobiographical stand-in for the authors...well, more or less, since they are two of them, and they're cartoonists rather than novelists.

2 Sisters is a big graphic novel by Matt Kindt and was something of a warm-up for his masterpiece Super Spy. I reviewed it here five years ago when I read it, but I lost that copy in the flood -- now I have a new one.

Bad Machinery, Vol. 4: The Case of the Lonely One collects the fourth major plotline of the webcomic that John Allison seems to be still doing, even though he said around a year ago that it was ending. (I'm not complaining, mind you -- I love Bad Machinery.) See my earlier reviews of volumes one, two, and three, or just go a read the darn thing online (link is to the first page of that comic; Allison has a lot of stuff on his site). John Allison is a national treasure -- am I allowed to say that, since he's British and thus technically not a treasure of my nation? -- and everyone should read him.

And last is Oyster War, a big graphic novel by Ben Towle that was originally serialized on but is now available as an actual book. Ben was one of my fellow Eisner judges, so I feel like I've been through a war with him and want to support him. Besides, I really liked reading Oyster War when it was serialized, and I always like reading things better when they're collection. So I thoroughly expect this to be awesome.

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