Thursday, January 23, 2014

Podcast #4: Free Comic Book Day Planning

In Episode Four, Jack and Amanda discuss:
Recommended Reads:
  • The Sandman by Neil Gaiman
  • Vol. 8: World’s End
  • Vol. 9: The Kindly Ones
  • Vol. 10: The Wake
  • Parker, Volume 4: Slayground by  Darwyn Cooke
Free Comic Book Day (FCBD)
  • Annual event the first Saturday of May: May 3, 2014
  • Special single issue comics published exclusively for FCBD at very low cost
  • Order due at the end of January via Diamond

How to order books for Free Comic Book Day:
  • Work with your local comic shop
  • Titles available at
  • Your shop will have a list of everything that is available AND HOW MUCH IT COSTS
  • Most cost between 25 and 45 cents per comic
  • Orders are due mid to late January
  • There are 57 titles and you WILL NOT want them all

  • KIDS:
  • Archie
  • Avatar/Lil Hellboy by Balthazar and Franco from Superman Family Adventures, and GENE YANG!
  • Kaboom Summer Blast (feat. Adventure Time, Hero BearPeanuts)
  • Spongebob Squarepants includes James Kochalka!
  • Scrooge; reprints of classic comics
  • Rocket Raccoon (Marvel is billing this as “all-ages, with a cover by the amazing Skottie Young… your mileage may vary.)
  • Graphix Spotlight: “The Dumbest Idea Ever” (The Amelia Rules creator tells the true story of his life as a teenage comic artist!)
  • Teen Titans — always fun!
  • Top Shelf Kids Club (promises an extended preview of the beautiful looking Maddy Kettle as well as a new story from the world of Monster on the Hill, one of our faves of 2013, plus more! — Maybe Owly?!)
  • Archaia (always do beautiful hardcover books, will have new Mouse Guard andRust stories plus Labyrinth!)
  • Special Shout-out: Comic Book Legal Defense Fund’s Raising a Reader

  • TEENS:
  • Bongo Free-For-All (Simpsons)
  • Guardians of the Galaxy (Promises a new story by Brian Michael Bendis and the BRILLIANT Sara Pichelli!)
  • Atomic Robo!! 
  • Courtney Crumrin 
  • Hip Hop Family Tree by Ed Piskor
  • Les Miserables — as manga. 
  • Street Fighter — these comics are gorgeous, should appeal to video game fans
  • The Tick!
  • ADULT:
  • Uber, from Avatar by Keiron Gillen — warning!  Will be very violent and probably offensive.
  • Same with 2000 AD
  • V Wars
  • Sherwood TX — has a Boondock Saints backup story?!
  • Shigeru Mizuki’s History of Japan

  • Bleeding Cool — News, feature on Spider Man 2 movie, intro to collecting and essential titles.
  • Overstreet’s Comic Book Marketplace — price guide
  • CBLDF’s Defend Comics!

  • How to run your event
  • REVIEW all the books first!
  • Seperate the kid, teen, and adult books
  • Set a limit on how many books each person can take and stick to it
  • Be available to talk about the books
  • Ask what their favorite comics are!
  • Good to pair with other events; including crafts,  author visits, minicon and comics swap.

Special Announcement:
In the Library with a Comic Book has partnered with Infopeople, a fantastic organization that supports and trains California libraries and staff; including the Eureka! Leadership Institute. You can now follow our podcast on the Infopeople blog and on their iTunes channel

Podcast #3: 25th Anniversary of The Sandman

In Episode 3, Jack and Amanda discuss: 
Recommended comics: 
  • Wild Children and Zero by Ales Kot
  • Locke and Key by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodrguez
  • Sandman Overture by Neil Gaiman and J.H. Williams III
25th Anniversary of The Sandman: What you need to know
  • One of the first things that Gaiman wrote; really built his name
  • Ran from 1989 to 1996
  • First Vertigo book, a DC imprint
  • World Fantasy Award Winner (and only comic to win ever)
  • Ten volumes, which should be read in order
  • If you just want a taste, read Dream Country and Fables and Reflections — both comprised of standalone shorts
  • Bay Area peeps: Check out the Cartoon Art Museum’s Grains of Sand: 25 Years of Sandman through March 16, 2014
  • And check your local library for free museum passes via Discover and Go.
Listener Question from Scott Bauer of Marin County Free Library:
“What comic are you reading now that has more “strange goodness” than Manhattan Projects?”
  • Punk Rock Jesus by Sean Murphey
  • Atomic Robo by Scott Wegener
  • Lazarus by Greg Rucka
  • Pax Romana by Jonathan Hickman

Podcast #2: CLA Wrap-Up

In our long-awaited second episode, Jack and Amanda discuss:
Recommended comics:
  • Tune by Derek Kirk Kim and Les McClaine
  • Trillium by Jeff Lemire
Banned Comics
California Library Association (CLA) Wrap-Up
Looking forward to in 2014:
  • Sandman Overture by Neil Gaiman and JH Williams III
  • Locke and Key by Joe Hill
  • Seconds by Bryan Lee O’Malley

Podcast #1: Best Comics of 2013

In the Library with a Comic Book, Episode 1:

In our debut episode, Jack and Amanda discuss some of their favorite titles of 2013 in preparation for the California Library Association’s Conference session; Comic Book Petting Zoo: The Best Graphic Novels of 2013
Baltazar, Art (auth. and illus.) and Franco (auth. and illus.). Superman Family Adventures, vol. 1.  DC Comics, 2013.  128p.  978-1401240509.
An incredibly lighthearted take on Superman and his compatriots Superboy, Supergirl, and Krypto the Superdog!  With goofy plots, punny gags, and bright, clear art, this book is a perfect antidote to the unrelenting grimness of the recent “Man of Steel” movie.  Appropriate for readers of all ages.
Whitley, Jeremy (auth.) and Emily Martin (illus.). Princeless. Action Lab Entertainment. 2012-present. 2 volumes, ongoing.
Princess Adrienne  was locked in a tower to await a princely rescue. However, she grew tired of waiting and disinterested in being rescued so, with her guardian dragon Sparky at her side, Adrienne saves herself and vows to rescue her sisters from a similar fate and fight for their freedom. Along the way, she picks up some proper gear and a best friend in blacksmith Bedelia. This fantastic adventure turns comics and fantasy tropes on their sides while spotlighting female heroes and a predominantly African-American cast. This engaging all ages title is hard to find, but worth spending the extra time to seek out.
Book 1: Save Yourself. 2012. 116p. 978-1450798945.
Book 2: Get Over Yourself. 2013. 100p. 978-0985965242.
Lepp, Royden. Rust.  Archaia Press.  2011-present.  2 volumes, ongoing.
In gorgeous sepia-toned art, this series tells the story of a family and their struggling farm, the mysterious young man (who is actually a robot) who comes to stay with them, and the dangerous secrets that follow him. Lepp does a wonderful job creating a believable family dynamic, but it’s the action where this book really shines.  It is impeccably paced, full of cool, steampunk-esque robot designs, and carefully utilizes digital blurring effects that give everything a sense of incredible speed.  Readers of the first volume, Visitor in the Field (2011. 192p. 978-1936393275), will be clamoring for the second, Secrets of the Cell (2012. 200p. 978-1936393589) and the upcoming third.
Fraction, Matt (auth.) with David Aja (illus.) and various other illustrators. Hawkeye.  Marvel Comics, 2013-present. 2 volumes, ongoing.
As a member of the Avengers, non-superpowered bow expert Hawkeye holds his own fighting alongside the likes of Captain America, Thor, and Iron Man.  When he’s off-duty, however, his life tends to be a bit more mundane… at least until he runs afoul of the Russian mob and puts the residents of his Brooklyn apartment building in harm’s way.  Author Fraction’s dialogue crackles with funny asides and misunderstandings (people regularly mishear our hero’s name as “Hawkguy”) which serve to strip the overblown grandeur out of the superhero genre.  And David Aja’s art is a revelation — flat and iconographic, miraculously balancing experimental layouts with blistering action.  Easily the best (and most fun!) superhero book of the year.
Vol. 1: My Life as a Weapon.  2013.  136p.  978-0785165620.
Vol. 2: Little Hits.  2013.  136p.  978-0785165637.
Hicks, Faith Eric. The Adventures of Superhero Girl. Dark Horse, 2013. 112p. 978-1616550844.
What’s a superhero to do with her powers in a low-crime city? Not even her near-invulnerability can save Superhero Girl from a mundane lifestyle, complete with laundry mishaps that shrink her cape! Hicks focuses her art in tight and colorful grids, leading to concise storytelling. Her deadpan sense of humor is evident throughout, and fans of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s Scott Pilgrim series will particularly enjoy this title.
Cliff, Tony. Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant. First Second, 2013. 176p. 978-1596438132.
Delilah Dirk is a force to be reckoned with: consider her the 19th-Century’s Indiana Jones, minus the academics but plus a flying boat. Selim is a mild-mannered Turkish lieutenant with a penchant for making a fantastic cup of tea. Together, they form an unlikely partnership that leads them on swashbuckling, globetrotting adventures. Cliff’s jewel-toned coloring enhances his vibrant art while infusing his storytelling with quiet moments and humorous touches. This is a refreshing comics for adults: not full of salacious content or foul language, but featuring grown-up characters with grown-up concerns.  It’s also tons of fun!
Modan, Rutu.  The Property.  Drawn and Quarterly, 2013.  232p.  978-1770461154.
A young Israeli woman accompanies her grandmother to Poland to see about recovering a building the family owned before they had to flee the country during World War II.  However, it turns out that grandmother has more personal reasons for making the trip.  Through the story, author/illustrator Modan explores the different ways that the long shadow of the Holocaust hangs over several generations of Jews, and pokes gentle, knowing fun at Jewish life and culture.  Romantic, moving, and surprising, this book deserves a spot on the shelf with other great comics about the legacy of war, such as Art Spiegelman’s Maus and Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis. Very highly recommended.