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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

D+Q's 2014 Unveiled and Babbled About

Whoo boy! We gotta lotta great books in store for you, 2014.

Let's run through the first half of the year month by month, and let me gush to you a little bit about all the books we intend to shove into your hands at conventions this year.

JANUARY 2014

Michael DeForge's Ant Colony - available Jan 28 in the US and Jan 21 in Canada
Our lone star of January, Ant Colony is a dazzling and darkly existential account of the fall of a black ant colony. Michael DeForge's striking visual sensibility and masterful storytelling immerse you in a world of insects whose concerns are the same as ours - loneliness, faith, love, and war. Or, as Chester Brown puts it:"Michael DeForge is that rare sort of cartoonist, a genuine artist with a unique vision and a teeming imagination. He's not trying to create sentimental pap for a mass audience. I love his work, but I do wonder why any sensible, profit-oriented publisher would release this crazy book."


FEBRUARY 2014

Kicking off February, we have two more of our Enfant line Moomins: 
Tove Jansson's Moomin and the Golden Tail 
AND!
Tove Jansson's Moomin's Desert Island - both in stores February 11
Do you need to know more than that? Perhaps you should know that these are two of my absolute faves from Tove's entire run of the Moomin strip? Or that their spines match perfectly? 


Diane Obomsawin's On Loving Women - in stores February 18
Diane Obomsawin's On Loving Women is a series of sweet, intimate accounts of women coming into their queerness. In these simply told vignettes, Obomsawin captures first kisses, first crushes, and first finding love with a woman. I'm not sure how to capture the essence of this book, apart from that it's one of those books I think of as indefinably awesome - in its simplicity, in the way it demands to be told as a comic, in its heart-tingling, diary-like qualities. 

More eloquently:
"On Loving Women is in turns wistful, sexy, goofy, bittersweet, frank, and adorable. Diane Obomsawin's deceptively simple lifework and straightforward writing style capture the breathless sweetness of holding another girl's hand for the first time, and the happy, lusty intimacy of a virginity-ending, drunken threesome. Delightful."—Ellen Forney, author of Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, and Me


Fabien Vehlmann and Kerascoet's Beautiful Darkness - in stores February 25
After I read Beautiful Darkness last spring, I was left utterly chilled. Its charming illustrations (by the talented husband and wife team of Kerasco√ęt) contrast so harrowingly with the savagery its tiny characters commit and the brutality they enact on each other. But don't just take my word for it - check out what the certified professionals at Publishers Weekly have to say about it in their starred review: "…Macabre... lush…horrific... This unforgettable graphic novel hovers on the edge of your daydreams and nightmares."


MARCH 2014

Brecht Vandenbroucke's White Cube - in stores March 4
When Tracy and I went to Angouleme last January, it was very romantic  exciting. Most of what we were doing there was ogling all of the beautiful books our European publishing brethren had on offer, and boy are those dudes productive! It's no exaggeration to say that White Cube was the belle of the ball though, and for two good reasons: Vandenbroucke's effortless wit and his gorgeous painting skillz.  These irreverent strips poke fun at the staid, often smug art world, offering an absurdist view on the institutions of that world—questioning what constitutes art and what doesn’t, as well as how we decide what goes on the walls of the gallery and what doesn’t.


APRIL 2014 

Adrian Tomine's New York Postcards: 30 Illustrations from the page of the New Yorker and beyond - in stores April 8
This is one snazzy snazzy postcard box, from the beveled edges to the colour choices to the everything inside of it. There are postcards of all your favourite New Yorker illustrations and covers, work published in the New York Times and other places, some of my favourite entries from Adrian's New York subway sketches, and a couple of illos so new (yes, including that Hurricane Sandy cover) they didn't make it into the New York Drawings book. Is there a person in the world who wouldn't be delighted to receive one (or all) of these in the mail? 


Mimi Pond's Over Easy - in stores April 15
Mimi Pond's Over Easy is a delightfully gossipy capsule into a moment in 1970s California, where art student Margaret drops out of college and finds inspiration and friendship in the cast of characters at the local diner where she works. Stay tuned for details of Mimi's tour in the coming weeks!

"Mimi Pond is a national treasure! Her sharp observations, singular point of view, and sure hand have created a dazzling and charming must read/see!—Todd Oldham

“As funny and warm-hearted as a memoir about a bunch of punks, drug dealers, hippies, and art school dropouts screwing in the 1970s can get. Mimi Pond’s coming-of-age graphic novel, Over Easy, is a delicious charmer.”—Jami Attenberg, author of The Middlesteins


MAY 2014

Serah-Marie McMahon's The WORN Archive - available in the US May 6, available in Canada April 29 
Tracy just posted a few tantalizing snapshots of the proofs for The WORN Archive: A fashion journal about the art, ideas, and history of what we wear. With historical essays about Dali and L Frank Baum's window dressings, innovative photo shoots, flawless design, and all sorts of writing that explores the relationship between fashion and identity, The WORN Archive celebrates personal fashion and rejoices in the creativity that inspires each of our fashion choices.

Plus, did I mention the foreword is by Jane Pratt?! Peep this gem from her introduction: "WORN is reclaiming fashion as something that can be exciting, challenging, different, quirky, interesting, not just as something you have to consume." 


Petty Theft by Pascal Girard - in stores May 27
I just finished reading this one! Petty Theft is another hilarious, very fictionalized memoir from Pascal Girard (Reunion, Bigfoot, and Nicolas). The premise is this: Pascal has just broken up with his girlfriend of nine years, he's staying in a friend's spare room, and running to ease his frazzled nerves. When he injures his back, precluding any running for months, Pascal throws himself into his other pleasure: reading. While at the bookstore one day, he spies a young woman picking up his own book - when she darts out of the shop without paying, he decides that it's time for a little detective work. 

What follows is a a laugh-out-loud (I fully did!) account of a man on a mission, and a charming comedy of errors. 


Julie Delporte's Everywhere Antennas - in stores May 27
Everywhere Antennas is subtle and moving, the portrait of a woman caught in the margins, struggling to balance the demands of technology and modern life with the need to find meaningful relationships and work. In soft, flowing colored pencil, Delporte shows her anonymous narrator coming to terms with a rare and misunderstood sensitivity to electromagnetic waves. This is a book that will leave you thinking about your place in the world.


Anouk Ricard's Benson's Cuckoos - in stores May 13
Benson's Cuckoos, the first of Anouk's books-for-grownups that we've published, is an off the rails office comedy about the employees of a cuckoo clock factory. I think of it as The Office meets 9 to 5 with less Dolly Parton and more really great character design per Anouk's aesthetic. Not to give too much away, Richard (the blue duck in the foreground) is the hapless new employee of an insane workplace where something sketchy is going on, and he's forced to figure out what… There's a really great staff retreat in the woods too.

Read a sample of Benson's Cuckoos here.

Shigeru Mizuki's Showa 1939-1944: A History of Japan - in stores May 27
Showa 1939-1944: A History of Japan is the second volume of Shigeru Mizuki's historical and autobiographical account of the long-running Showa Era. It dissects Japan's entry into World War II after the attack on Pearl Harbor, and on a personal level, shows the end of Mizuki's idyllic childhood in the countryside when he’s drafted and shipped off to the tiny island of Rabaul in Papua New Guinea.

Read a sample of Showa 1939-1944 here.

JUNE 2014

Frank King's Walt Before Skeezix - in stores June 10
Walt Before Skeezix is a prequel of sorts to our reprints of Gasoline Alley. This hardcover tome, lushly designed by Chris Ware, covers the first two years of the strip, before baby Skeezix revolutionized GA's world. Walt Before Skeezix includes a wide-ranging introductory essay from noted comics historian Jeet Heer and an essay by Tim Samuelson, the cultural historian for the city of Chicago, about how Chicago’s history is reflected in King’s newspaper strip.

Read a sample of Walt Before Skeezix.

Anouk Ricard's Anna & Froga: Thrills, Spills, and Gooseberries - in stores June 17

Gawd, what do you really need to know about this one other than that it will be another delightfully funny and light-hearted visit with Anna, Froga, and their cast of friends? Okay okay, here are some of the good things you'll see in it: Christopher the worm trying to eat a piece of pie with no hands; a squirrel pummelling Anna, Froga, Bubu, and Christopher with chestnuts; a dog carnie who has really long facial hair; an ant eating a giant potato chip while watching TV.

Read a sample of Anna & Froga: Thrills, Spills, & Gooseberries here.


AUGUST 2014

Lars Jansson's Moomin Book 9 - in stores August 5
Last-before-our-fall-list, Moomin: The Complete Lars Jansson Comic Strip, Book 9! This volume includes one of Lars's most acclaimed comic strips - "Fuddler and Married Life."

Read a sample from Moomin Book 9 here.

And that's how you put together the next seven months chez D+Q. I promised not to let this take up the entire blog page, so I'm going to sign off. Cheerio and happy 2014 reading, y'all!

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