Sunday, October 27, 2013

Incoming Books: October 25

I don't seem to get into decent comic stores -- and I define "decent" as "having a decent proportion of their stock not featuring overmuscled chaps with painted-on clothes striking each other and moaning" -- as often as I used to, so I'm shifting to do most of my comics-shopping online.

(I'm not sure if I like that; I much prefer to browse through physical books when I'm buying physical books. But, as long as I'm working in Hoboken rather than Manhattan, I think this is how it will be.)

So I recently bought a bunch of books from a comics store, and they arrived on Friday. Aside from a My Little Pony collection for one of my sons -- I think I'll leave it vague exactly which of them is a brony -- here's what I got:

A User's Guide to Neglectful Parenting, the new book from Guy Delisle. Delisle is best known for his travelogue books -- Pyongyang, Burma Chronicles, Jerusalem, Shenzhen -- and this seems to be his way of continuing in the autobio vein, possibly with a lighter touch, without having to have a big year-long residence somewhere else to organize the experience.

The Push Man and Other Stories, a great collection of graphic stories from Yoshihiro Tatsumi, originally published in 1969 in fairly obscure Japanese publications. I reviewed this when I first saw it, and I stand by the same opinion: even just from his short stories translated so far (here and in Good-Bye and Abandon the Old in Toyko), Tatsumi is one of the great comics creators and short-story writers of the 20th century.

Sunday Comics, an artifact from a piece of Gahan Wilson's career that I didn't even suspect existed. Wilson did a Sunday-only newspaper strip from 1972 through 1974, and this book collects all of it. From a quick glance, it looks to be made up of four or five unrelated gags for each strip -- perhaps a way to use the jokes that weren't blue enough for Playboy or rude enough for National Lampoon. (On the other hand, there was still a thriving single-panel ecosystem back then, though it was starting to die out -- Wilson may have had many other markets that we wouldn't think of these days.)

The new graphic novel from Kim Deitch, as usual presented as a true story that he's unearthed and researched, is The Amazing, Enlightening And Absolutely True Adventures of Katherine Whaley. Also as usual for Deitch, it's set about a hundred years ago in a fairly disreputable end of the entertainment industry. I expect it will connect to the Waldo stories and the rest of Deitch's work, and that it will be wonderful.

New School is the new major graphic novel from Dash Shaw, creator of Bottomless Belly-Button and BodyWorld, and I don't know much more about it than that. But Shaw is a creator worth following to whatever he's going to do next, so I'm on board.

And last was a big book called The Best of Milligan & McCarthy, which collects Paradax!, Rogan Ghosh, and a bunch of other comics written by Peter Milligan and drawn by Brendan McCarthy. I have fond memories of several of those things, and quite a lot of respect for the work of both of those men (separately and together), so this looked like a nice package to replace things that had sat in longboxes until they were destroyed by my flood two years back.

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