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In Your Room

YOU can’t go home again, or something like that. Nostalgia be damned, Comic Arts Brooklyn found its new digs easy. CAB lived large in Pratt’s ARC, aka the Activities Resource Center. Gabe Fowler, CAB Captain and lord of Desert Island, claimed that the ARC is the second largest room in Brooklyn, right behind the Barclays Center. We believe him. R. Sikoryak, who was setting up not too far from us, remarked that the space was too big, that unless there were five thousand people in it, the place would feel empty. Maybe Gabe can catch us up on CAB 2017 attendance, but we thought the place filled up just fine.

 

 

Despite the shocking number of CAB debuts, and poor us with not a one, we sold some books. Reid Psaltis, taking a break from making a big fish for the American Museum of Natural History (really), filled a few Order(s) of Things. Rob Sergel sold out of Eschew 4. After setting up at every CAB in every year of its existence, we have learned that the CAB crowd are mostly generalists. They come for everything; we’ve seen folks with CAB debuts sell out of their previous books. Brooklyn remains weird that way.

 

 

We hardly got out from behind our tables, but Barry Matthews showed up as promised, stole some books from us to fill some orders from England and treated us to an album of cat pictures. We caught up with our guy, Brendan Leach, who swears he is working on new comics, finally. We got hugs from A. Degen, another guy without a full name, and Zack Hazard Vaupen, a guy with three names, and received from them a bookmark and a (stunning) book, respectively. We checked in with Ed Kanerva, making his way to Japan after the show. We picked up the latest from Jordan Jeffries, spent too much money at the kuš! table, and we were neighbors with One Percent Press, who were playing host to the darling Max Weiss, of Papa Time fame, who had a new comic, Convergence, which was even better than Papa Time, which he made in 24 hours, and which had a cover blurb from our very own Sam Gaskin, we shit you not.

All this happened at a one day show. We have never missed a CAB, and we never will, unless something truly awful happens to us, Goddess forbid. Thank you, Gabe, and all you CAB volunteers, for keeping the magic going. We can’t wait till next year’s CAB. Speaking of next year, we promised you a peek at what’s up at Secret Acres in 2018…

 

 

We waited long enough for our first Canuck! A decade in the making, Aaron Costain’s Entropy, twice nominated for a Doug Wright Award, takes place at the intersection of the world’s cultures. Mythologies and religions cross-pollinate, bleed into one another, and form a new soul from synthesis – or they will, if our hero, a golem with a surprisingly modern sensibility, can outrun man-eating giants, a vicious army of crows, a mute doppelgänger, an angel and one very manipulative, slave-driving cat.

 

 

Reid Psaltis follows up the Order of Things with his first ever graphic novel, Kingdom/OrderKindgom/Order wordlessly follows a nameless man as he searches for meaning in his life. Through symbols and sounds, he is reminded of his part in the greater, natural world, just as he is slowly divorced from the modern world surrounding him. Mysteriously, our hero discovers he can understand the calls of the animals around him – but how much of this is real, and how much is delusion? Whatever the case, Reid will leave you speechless.

 

 

What’s silly, scary, and sexy? Edie Fake returns with Little Stranger, his first book with a spine since his Ignatz Award winning Gaylord Phoenix. Throughout the intervening seven years, Edie’s never stopped making comics. In fact, he’s made a LOT of them, and, at last, they’re all under the covers of a Little Stranger, including the notorious and legendary “Night Taps,” “Foie Gras,” “Rico McTaco,” “Nightcrawlers,” and “Sweemeats.” You’ll never look at a turkey the same way again. Even better, Little Stranger launches with a new printing of Gaylord Phoenix and a new, eighth (!) chapter of that series.

 

 

Robert Sergel takes the awkward path to greatness with his first graphic novel, Bald Knobber. A middle school boy named Cole delivers a book report on the Bald Knobbers, masked vigilantes from the Reconstruction Era. Unfortunately for him, this thrilling tale of antebellum justice and a corrupt county has an uncanny resonance with young Cole’s real life. Donning a homemade Bald Knobber mask, Cole and his cat, Daisy, set out to avenge the wrongs perpetrated by his recently divorced parents, his mother’s new boyfriend and the school bully – but much like the real Bald Knobbers, Cole discovers there are consequences to taking the law into your own hands.

 

 

L. Nichols (another guy without a full name), is now an artist, engineer and father of two, but was born in a small town in rural Louisiana, assigned female and raised by conservative Christians. Flocks is his memoir of that childhood, and of the expectations of his family, friends and community, the flocks of Flocks, that shaped and re-shaped him as a young girl and a young man. Unexpectedly, L. never takes the easy way out, never accuses, never rejects, never blames and never flinches in the telling of this personal history. L.’s irresistibly charming drawings demonstrate what makes Flocks so special: L.’s boundless empathy.

We have some other stuff up our sleeves, but we can’t play all our cards at once without mixing metaphors. If you’re in LA, come see us at Comic Arts Los Angeles, which is coming right up. We’ll be back here in a few. Thanks, everybody, for giving us a great 2017 in a world otherwise fill with horrors.

Your Pals,

Barry and Leon

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