John Hodgman on Dungeon + more press

“The companionship of Daddy and his dog stands for something that is attainable in our lives — even in an era when so many other dreams are being dashed. No wonder this book resonated so much in its native land.”

Seattle Post Intelligencer on Stargazing Dog

“Geary works his magic once again. This would be an excellent choice for schools and libraries looking for literary graphic novels, for teachers who want to spark discussion of the case, and for any teens looking for an enthralling nonfiction read.”

School Library Journal on Geary’s Sacco & Vanzetti.

TV Personality John Hodgman (The Daily Show) has some nice things to say about our series Dungeon over at Newsarama.

Happy Gobble Gobble.

Onion’s AV Club on Stargazing Dog

The Onion’s online AV Club on Stargazing Dog:

“Murakami knows he has a powerful central image in this happy, ignorant mutt and the desperate man who loves him, and so he stands back from it just enough to let it work on the reader, never pushing the story too far to the maudlin.”

And here’s a comment made there posted by a reader calling himself Finally Mad Enough to Post that we thought quite eloquent:

“I ordered and read Stargazing Dog the second I heard about it, and it beautifully crushed me.

I’m going to make an admission here AV Commentators, the secret origin of Finally Mad Enough To Post: I ‘can’t’ cry, I’ve got such an tall thick emotional wall between me and bottled up sadness that it takes huge events to open cracks.
I tore through Stargazing Dog and it left me blubbering like a beaten toddler. I loved every sad destiny-foretold beautiful page of it.
Is it a manipulative book? Yes, but it is executed with such naturalness and quality even if you know what’s coming the effect holds true.  I’m not being objective of course, but I don’t have to. I just loved this, and sometimes when the art reaches that point it’s beyond criticism.”

A more ambivalent review from Comics Reporter:

“While I think some readers may find the story affecting and the situation depicted genuinely scary — in that it underlines how close we all are to being cut loose by society — others are likely to find its story over-the-top and its emotional through-line bordering on shamelessness, and perhaps the whole affair suffering from a lack of sophistication.”

Miami Herald on Geary: give credit to his writing also!

“It is the perfect book to enjoy on a quiet evening, preferably with a dog by your side. And chances are you’ll wind up taking your dog for a walk afterwards, pondering what you’ve just read as you gaze up at the starry sky above you.”

No Flying No Tights on Stargazing Dog

“With an artistic style recalling Herriman’s Krazy Kat and a fanciful imagination evoking St. Exupery’s simple, elegant flights of whimsy, Dillies takes his audience on a strange trip through Charlie’s fears and inadequacies. Billed as an all-ages book, the plot and narration are simple yet crafty, the real storytelling technique coming through in the visuals. Dillies’ transitions are particularly slick, as he moves between the real world of Charlie’s humdrum, lonely existence and the vast, dreamlike realms of his burgeoning imagination.”
Broken Frontier on Bubbles & Gondola

The Miami Herald on Geary’s Sacco & Vanzetti:

“Geary is almost universally praised for his stylish and crafty art, with extreme attention to detail and dead-on historical depiction of characters and settings. Sadly overlooked, however, is his writing. He’s often deadpan and hilarious but in the latest entry in his current series, A Treasury of XXth Century Murder, he masterfully organizes the story surrounding the infamous 1920 murder, subsequent trials and ongoing controversies into a highly readable and fascinating package. His art, as always, is ceaselessly expressive and charming, but let’s also give credit to this modern American master as one whose complete craft is at its peak.”

Cat Lovers on Stargazing Dog + more

Two cat lovers on this dog’s tale, The Stargazing Dog that is:

“I may be a cat person, but I am certainly not immune to the touching tale of a good-hearted and grateful dog who is faithful to his master until the very end. Poignant.”

Manga Bookshelf

“I was surprised, really, at how much I got sucked in by this book, especially because I’m a cat person. But the universality of Daddy and the dog’s tale works no matter who you are. Recommended.”

says Marc Mason at Comics Waiting Room.

And Playback:Stl makes a good point on Sacco & Vanzetti:

 “In this increasingly xenophobic and classist era, Geary does us all a service with this stylish reprise of their case.”

Kinky & Cosy, you either hate or love it:

“Now this is the kind of crazy crap I like to see in my comic strips. Arson, didlo jokes, cripple jokes, Fair Trade ripping, addressing the issue of violence in schools in an insensitive manner — all this and more is within the pages of Kinky and Cosy, from the Belgian comic strip from writer/artist, Nix. You’re pretty much going to have to toss all your self-righteousness out the window because if you don’t, you’ll just get offended and end up missing something that is cute, funny, and disturbing all rolled up into the form of two twin girls who get into their own brand of trouble.”

Comics Bulletin, giving it 4 bullets (it’ll take more than that to kill’em). The very same goes on to critique Bubbles & Gondola:

“This is an awfully charming book. Renaud Dillies is a wonderful artist, able to capture the intense and sweet fairy-tale life that Charlie the Mouse lives in, a world of bright colors, intense emotions and frustrating disappointments.”

Publishers Weekly starred review for Stargazing Dog + Teacher Librarian on Sacco

“Offers some profound insight on the human condition (by way of the canine condition) without being too sweet or sappy.”

Says Publishers Weekly of Stargazing Dog in a second starred review in just a few weeks for NBM’s graphic novels. The other recent one was for Bubbles & Gondola.

“We have been really zeroing in on absolutely the best GNs to  publish or we simply won’t bother,” says NBM Publisher Terry Nantier. “These two out of the park just show the results of our focus. If it’s from NBM, you simply can’t afford to miss it!” Stargazing Dog is already close to selling out of its 1st print run in just a few weeks.

“Were Vanzetti and Sacco murderers or victims of judicial prejudice?  Either way, their case definitely said something about the America they called home. Geary’s historical mysteries always sparkle with clarity, both in the artwork and plot, and in this book he also resists the urge to decide that one side was right, all while giving the reader the most up-to-date information possible.”

Teacher Librarian

“it is not often a graphic novel can bring me to tears”

2 reviews on Stargazing Dog:

“It’s not often a graphic novel can bring me to tears. “Stargazing Dog,” by Takashi Murakami, did just that.

There is something positive to take from this. I admit I found the first part so emotionally wrenching that it took me two weeks to force myself to read the second part. But afterward the story kept bubbling up in my thoughts, demanding that I think about it, learn something from it.

And as America suffers its own economic doldrums, “Stargazing Dog” has a lot to teach.”

Capt. Comics Andrew Smith of Scripps Howard News Service.

“It’s bittersweet, but I appreciated that it didn’t take the easy way out.  It’s hard to keep from finding yourself entranced by Happie [the dog] as he goes from good to bad situation but still has that upbeat canine spirit.”

says Read About Comics

“Lewis Trondheim is one of the greatest living cartoonists. It’s not even an argument. His work is immediately accessible, profoundly universal, and deeply hilarious. When he makes you laugh (and he will), it’s not just a sight-gag or well-observed human foible. It’s that you are so invested in his character and his world that it’s as if you are laughing at yourself, because in a way, you are. I can’t think of anyone in comics other than Charles Schulz who so brilliantly and intuitively understood human nature and conveyed it and depicted it as well as Trondheim does.”

Trouble with Comics on Little Nothings 4, still getting reviews months later and still a feature on this blog every Monday.

Speaking of  books still getting reviews, the panelists give another rave for Geary’s Sacco & Vanzetti.

The Story of Lee, in Scotland (again!)

We’ve had a lovely review of THE STORY OF LEE from the organisers of the north of Scotland’s comic book convention ‘HI-EX’.

In which they note:

“…wonderful artwork from… Chie Kutsuwada. While some of her work at the beginning of the book seems a bit shaky, the reader can almost see her confidence grow after only a short number of pages, and the standard of work just gets better and better as the volume goes on. Her brilliant use of silent panels and understanding of body language (like a heartbreakingly sad panel of Lee’s parents in bed together) really add depth to the emotion of the story.”

and:

“While the arc of the story will, I suspect, not surprise many readers, it is told with such warmth, skill and truthfulness that the reader cannot help but be carried along by it and then lifted by the note of hopefulness at the end. And ending which does a superb job of leaving the reader wanting more. Seek this out!”

(We say: Yes, please do!)

http://hiexcomics.blogspot.com/2011/07/story-of-lee-review.html

Kinky & Cosy #10 on NYTimes GN bestseller list + more press

Nix’ snarky Kinky & Cosy is #10 on this week’s New York Times Bestseller list for hardcover graphic novels!

And Robot 6 has this to say about the collection:

“Nix’s little rascals are bad kids in the Bart Simpson/Calvin/Shinchan mode, but the humor is more fearless.”

“Recommended. The cultural tension is beautifuilly written, and the story is told well in the small moments between Lee and Matt.”

Library Media Connection on the Story Of Lee.

The Portland Examiner covers Rick Geary’s successful appearance at Bridge City Comics last week.

Finally, Manga Maniac Cafe gives Stargazing Dog an A-.

Starred review for Bubbles & Gondola in Publishers Weekly

Just released today: Publishers Weekly gives a starred review for Bubbles & Gondola (which means it is an outstanding book) saying:

“A certain magic is demonstrated when an artist, unfettered by perceptions of comics being for kids, uses the full paint box of tools available to him. Few American artists, tainted by memories of Mickey or Maus, would cast a mouse as their hero these days, but for Dillies’s protagonist, the lonely Charlie, it’s a marvelous choice for his personality and journey. Author Charlie deludes himself that he’s loving his solitude as a way of ignoring his writer’s block. The town where he lives, preparing for Carnival, is full of wonders, but Charlie focuses on his pain, even when given the chance to escape through riding a Ferris wheel. Then his gondola flies him to a wonderland reminiscent of the classic strips Little Nemo in Slumberland and Krazy Kat in a palette of reds and browns. Through encounters with his family and other city inhabitants, Charlie rediscovers imagination in a story that has the crazy patchwork feel of a hallucinatory trip. Dillies’s gorgeous art is more than up to the task. The wild imagery, wandering through parties and dreamland alike, transports the reader in an emotional way that propels the practical mind into the escape of art.”

This also means it will qualify for the Best GN of the Year list…

Booklist on Sacco & Vanzetti + more

“The quiet effectiveness of Geary’s consciously old-fashioned drawing style is reinforced by his thorough recreation of period details.”

Says Booklist of Geary‘s Sacco & Vanzetti.

“This dreamlike meditation on creativity and finding value in life is not understood so much as succumbed to. Reminded me of the work of Winsor McCay in its dreamlike logic.”

Johanna Draper Carlson, Comics Worth Reading on Bubbles & Gondola which is shipping now and wil be in stores by October 12th.

“Those reading these strips for shockingly frank autobiographical confessions are hereby advised to look elsewhere. For the rest of us, Trondheim’s ongoing Portrait of the Artist as a Middle-Aged Bird continues to charm and deliver.”
Bill Sherman of Blogcritics on Little Nothings 4.