Dave: Athena Voltaire (Volume 2): Flight of the Falcon - I don’t know what took so long for this to be collected but it’s finally here, a collection of the six issue mini-series that launched aviatrix Athena Voltaire from webcomics to paper. A great adventure story with beautiful art. Also available again is the collected webcomics, which is volume one of the Athena Voltaire collections.
Archaia Studios Press
Dave: The Bond of Saint Michael #1 - A new six issue mini-series, a vampire thriller featuring the art of The Red Star’s Christian Gossett.
Patrick: In addition to a major new project with Marvel discussed elsewhere in this post, the prolific Warren Ellis has a couple of new books out from Avatar this month. Warren Ellis’ Aetheric Mechanics is an original graphic novel for the writer’s “Apparat” line of books, a strange science fiction/mystery set in an alternate 1907 Britain. Artwork by Gianluca Pagliarani. Also, Ellis and Juan Jose Ryp continue their exploration of the superhero genre in No Hero # 0, featuring a young group of San Francisco-based superhumans called the Levellers.
Patrick: Achewood: The Great Outdoor Fight - A hardcover collection of the popular storyline featured in Chris Onstad’s mega-popular web comic arrives this month, alongside fellow web-to-print projects The Perry Bible Fellowship Almanack, by Nicholas Gurewitch, and Nothing Nice to Say by Mitch Clem.
Astro Boy 1&2 - A special edition collecting the first two volumes of Osamu Tezuka’s classic manga Astro Boy.
Dave: Buffy the Vampire Slayer #16 - People were wondering if this was ever going to happen, and here it is: Future slayer Fray joins Buffy for the new story arc “Time of Your Life” with original Fray artist Karl Moline.
MySpace Dark Horse Presents (Volume 1) - In case you missed Dark Horse’s initial MySpace comics, here’s a collection of them, including the entirety of Joss Whedon’s Sugarshock!
Patrick: Heavy Liquid - This well regarded science fiction tale by the great Paul Pope is collected in hardcover for the first time, with new colors and bonus material.
Drawn & Quarterly
Patrick: Drawn & Quarterly Showcase Book 5 - I really enjoy these anthologies featuring a small group of young cartoonists. This issue features artists from Sweden, Finland, and the USA, specifically Anneli Furmark, Amanda Vahamaki, and T. Edward Bak. I’m only familiar with Bak, the American cartoonist, but the consistently high quality featured in previous editions of the anthology suggests the book will be well worth your time.
Patrick: Love and Rockets: New Stories #1 - For my money, this is the book of the month. Love and Rockets returns in a new format, an annual series of longer issues (over 100 pages in this first issue) featuring work by Gilbert, Jaime, and Mario Hernandez. Jaime’s story sounds too awesome for words, as Penny Century is finally granted a longstanding wish. I can’t wait to get my hands on this book.
***Patrick's Book of the Month***
Humbug - This is a pretty major publishing project: Humbug was one of three humor magazines created by the legendary Harvey Kurtzman after his tenure at Mad. The entire eleven issue run is collected here in a deluxe, two-volume slipcase edition.
Tales Designed to Thrizzle #4 - I wasn’t sure if he was doing another one of these. You’ll want to snap up a copy of Michael Kupperman’s hilarious humor anthology as soon as you see it. Very, very funny stuff.
The Comics Journal #292 - I try not to highlight every issue of The Comics Journal because it’s an excellent periodical I assume our enlightened audience already reads every issue of anyway, but I had to point out that Gary Groth interviews father and son cartoonists Gene and Kim Deitch in this issue, which is awesome. Also, a new Grant Morrison interview. I don’t think they’ve talked to him since The Invisibles was just starting to come out.
Harper Collins Publishers
Patrick: Zot! Volume 1: The Complete Black and White Stories 1987-1991 - Wow, between this collection of Scott McCloud’s sci-fi series, and the Paul Pope and Howard Chaykin books, the theme for this month is apparently collections of classic works I’ve always wanted to read but have not yet gotten around to.
Dave: Spike: After the Fall #1 - The popular character from Joss Whedon’s Buffy-verse gets his own "official & canonized" take on exactly what went down after the series finale of the Angel television series.
The Complete Terry and the Pirates (Volume 4): 1941-1942 - Continuing the fantastic action/adventure strip reprint project, Terry and the Pirates reaches new heights as some very shocking events go down.
Patrick: American Flagg! Volume 1 - This one’s been a long time coming. The first fourteen issues of Howard Chaykin’s classic American Flagg is collected in a deluxe hardcover format. Included is a brand new “American Flagg” story by Chaykin.
Dave: Astonishing X-Men #25 - Warren Ellis and Simone Bianchi are handed the baton and hit the ground running with a new beginning to the X-Men flagship title. They have some big shoes to fill, but I'm excited to see what they bring to the table.
***Dave's Book of the Month***
Uncanny X-Men #500 - Halfway to a thousand issues, quite a milestone. The series has seen some good times and bad times. Hopefully Matt Fraction joining Ed Brubaker as co-writer will nudge the book into the "good" category a little more clearly. It’s been too long since one of the secondary X-Men titles has been worthy of much praise. The writing team behind The Immortal Iron Fist may just be the trick.
The Order (Volume 2): California Dreaming - Speaking of Matt Fraction, this book collects the last part of his and Barry Kitson’s excellent superhero book. I loved the first volume and highly recommend reading the collections.
Counter X (Volume 1) TP - Warren Ellis relaunched a few x-books at one point to try to reinvigorate them, including Generation X and X-Man. This is from one of those attempts, of the team book X-Force. Beginning with issue #102, the team began to take orders from Pete Wisdom and went a little dark. It didn’t last long. To make this book stand out from other X-Force collections, Marvel has decided to title this collection Counter X for some reason. Random, but…okay.
Patrick: Little Nothings (Volume 1): The Curse of the Umbrella - The revered European cartoonist Lewis Trondheim offers selections from his comics blog in this book. Features full color painting.
Patrick: Powr Mastrs Volume 2 - Oh man, I already called Love and Rockets: New Stories my book of the month, didn’t I? Well, I guess I’ll stand by that, but a close second would be this second volume in Chris Forgues’ outrageous series of fantasy graphic novels. The first volume was one of my favorite books of last year, and there’s no reason to think this follow-up won’t be every bit as good, if not better.
Sunday Press Books
Patrick: Little Nemo in Slumberland: Many More Splendid Sundays - Put a portion of your economic stimulus package to good use with this second volume of Winsor McCay’s masterpiece, lovingly presented in all their gigantic (16” x 21”) glory.
Dave: Sugar Princess (Volume 1) - The first volume of a new two-volume shojo manga debuts this month by the creator of Hana-Kimi.