Copacetic Arrivals: 3Q 2008
all items still available (unless otherwise noted)
ordering info

New for September 2008

Krazy & Ignatz 1943-44Krazy & Ignatz 1943 - 1944: "He Nods in Quiescent Siesta"
by George Herriman
This beautiful, full color, oversize softcover volume designed by Chris Ware brings us to the end of the thirty year journey of George Herriman's amazing Krazy Kat comic strip.  It's packed with Herriman rarities including letters, photos, some wonderful one-of-a-kind hand-colored illustrations, and  several never-before-seen Herriman works that together help take the sting out of knowing that this volume completes the collection of Krazy Kat Sunday pages that began twenty(?) years ago with the Eclipse / Turtle Island editions.  For those of you who only joined this journey when Fantagraphics took it over, you still have quite a treat to look forward to as Fantagraphics intends to now circle back to the beginning and collect the first ten years of Krazy Kat, creating what is sure to be the definitive uniform edition.  For the time being, let's all savor the last fruits of Herriman's genius and then give thanks.
retail price - $19.99  copacetic price - $17.77

Moomin 3
Moomin, Book Three
by Tove Jansson
It's here!  The third book in the four volume Drawn & Quarterly series collecting the entirety of the Moomin comic strip.  Commissioned by the London Evening Standard over fifty years ago, created and produced in Finland by Ms. Jansson, Moomin went on to be published in over forty different newspapers around the world.  Believe it or not, to the best of our knowledge (please correct us if we're wrong), despite its global popularity and the solid US sales of the children's Moomin books -- many of which include illustrations -- these D & Q volumes represent the first time the comics manifestation of the Moominverse has ever been published in book form in North America.  Once again Drawn & Quarterly has done the material proud by maintaining their ususal standard of excellence in production.  Don't worry if this is the first you've heard of Moomin:  we still have the first two volumes in stock.  And, not only that, D & Q had the foresight to provide us with an online location at which to peruse 90 consecutive strips --  here -- so, go ahead and get Moominized!
retail price - $19.99  copacetic price - $17.77

The Portable FrankThe Portable Frank
by Jim Woodring
If you read comics you owe it to yourself to read The Portable Frank, which contains some of the most powerful sequences of images ever produced.  The 14 classic black-and-white tales that make up the 200 pages of this vital tome will take its readers into the deepest caves of their psyche, tapping into genetic memories that reamain hidden and unreachable to other forms of communication.  The wordless, "silent" Frank tales are comics at its purest.  These are comics that can be read again and again and again and still be fresh each time, for they are  inexhaustable, like some sort of magic book of comics that is refilled each time you open it, always the same yet always new; ur-comics.  Take a peek at the book by visiting this page on Flickr(Long time Frank fans, please note:  most [all?] of these stories are also contained in its precursor, the mammoth mind-bender, The Frank Book, which also contains all the full color Frank tales.  But, to be perfectly honest, they look better here on the flat white paper stock, than they do on the glossy clay-coated stock of The Frank Book, which was more suitable for the full color pieces.)
retail price - $16.99  copacetic price - $15.55

Call of the WildCall of the Wild - Mutts
by Patrick McDonnell
Yesh!  We can now add to our list yet another reason why autumn is our favorite time of year:  it's when, each year, the new Mutts™ collection is released.  This year we have Call of the Wild, which brings us another full year's worth (2007, we believe) of daily and Sunday strips, in black and white and four-color, respectively. 
retail price - $16.95  copacetic price - $15.25

Abandoned CarsAbandoned Cars
by Tim Lane
OK, true believers, step right up for a dose of hardboiled comics that will take you on a ride outside of yourself and into "The Great American Mythological Drama."  Think Jim Thompson & David Goodis, Sam Fuller & Robert Aldrich, yes, but also think of a travelling carnival populated by the ghosts of Elvis, Stagger Lee, John Dillnger and their cronies:  the detritus of the American Dream.  These are stories that grab you and don't let go, put down on paper in page after page of firm, tight, highly controlled and relentless pen and ink comics powered by coffee, cigarettes and alcohol.  Do yourself a favor and give this 160 page hardcover the once over by visiting the massive page devoted to it  on the jackienoname Weblog.
retail price - $22.99  copacetic price - $20.00

Disappearance Diary
by Hideo Azuma
Disappearance DiaryThe latest release from our favorite manga publisher, Ponent Mon, is a 200 pager that chronicles three periods of crisis experienced by its creator, renowned manga artist Hideo Azuma.  The first, was a period of iternerant homelessness brought about by his suffering an on-the-job nervous breakdown in 1989, after twenty years of working in manga.  Three years later, in 1992, he had a relapse and once again found himself wandering homeless, but this time around, with a little help from some acquaintances, he entered the world of manual labor, repairing gas lines. The common thread throughout these years was Azuma's alcoholism.  Finally, in 1998, his health deteriorated to such a point that he was forced into clinical rehab, and it is with this story that the volume concludes.  Azuma states at the outset, "This manga has a positive outlook on life, and so it has been made with as much realism removed as possible."  This is a tongue-in-cheek way of saying that, whereas most accounts of homelessness and alcoholism tend towards the dark and bleak (see above), Disappearance Diary, despite the fact that the story it tells is one of dysfunction and collapse, actually makes for a perky and enjoyable read.  Here's a brief preview to give you an idea (just click on the thumbnails).
retail price - $22.99  copacetic price - $20.00

Monsieur Leotard

The Amazing Remarkable Monsieur Leotard
by Eddie Campbell, with Dan Best
This 128 page, full color, French-flapped softcover is the third original graphic novel that Monsieur Campbell has produced for First Second.  He clearly is not one to rest on his laurels!  Set in 19th century France, it is a multi-layered work, visually as well as textually, and one that is as entertaining as it is intellectually stimulating.  Jog-the Blog certainly found it so, as you will discover if you read his in-depth review.
retail price - $16.95  copacetic price - $15.55

How To Love
By Actus Tragicus
How to LoveWhen this book first came in we sold out of it before we had a chance to write about it here.  Now that it's back in stock we are here to tell that How To Love is another fine anthology of work by the Israeli cartoonists known as Actus Tragicus.  This 144 page, full color, horizontally formatted hardcover volume contains six graphic novellas by Batia Koltonk, David Polosky, Mira Friedmann, Itzik Rennert, Yirmi Pinkus and Rutu Modan, who turns in what may be her best work yet.  Read more about this book at Read About Comics.
retail price - $29.95  copacetic price - $27.50

Omega HCOmega The Unknown
by Jonathan Lethem, Farel Dalrymple, Paul Hornschemeier and (an uncredited) Gary Panter
This full-size hardcover volume collects the entire ten-issue series that just concluded --  for the same price of the ten issue indivicual comics.  This series brought together a very interesting and diverse group of creators to bring their combined contemporary sensibilities to bear on the original, and relatively obscure, 1970s series of the same name.  Sound interesting?  Learn more by reading this interview with Jonathan Lethem that was conducted just as the series was originally being published.
retail price - $29.99  copacetic price - $26.99

Country NurseCountry Nurse
by Jeff Le Mire
The third and final volume in the lauded Essex County trilogy, Country Nurse follows a day in the life of this farming community's travelling nurse in a story that weaves together the first two volumes, Tales from the Farm and Ghost Stories (both of which are still available), creating a final, unified whole.
retail price - $9.99  copacetic price - $8.88
Essex County Trilogy
To celebrate the completion of the trilogy, we're have a special price on
the complete set of all three volumes.
combined retail price - $34.97  copacetic price - $27.77

Janes in LoveJanes in Love
by Cecil Castellucci and Jim Rugg
This is the follow-up volume to Plain Janes, the book that launched the Minx line of graphic novels aimed at the nascent -- and booming -- market for comics among teenage girls.  Plain Janes was far and away the best selling volume of the series for us.  This is due in no small part to the excellent artwork executed by Pittsburgh's own (and Copacetic customer) Jim Rugg.  He and Ms. Castellucci prove that their team is not a one-hit wonder with Janes in Love which we are sure will be enjoyed by all fans of Plain Janes.
retail price - $9.99  copacetic price - $8.88

Jackie OrmesJackie Ormes, The First African American Woman Cartoonist
by Nancy Goldstein
This lavishly illustrated -- in black and white and full color -- oversize hardcover volume published by the University of Michigan Press brings us the life and career of an important American artist.  Jackie Ormes was born right here in Pittsburgh, PA and was raised just up river in Monongahela.  Her most popular comic strip, Patty-Jo 'n' Ginger ran every week for eleven years  -- from 1945 through 1956 -- in the Pittsburgh Courier, which was nationally distributed in those days.  Her other strips, including Torchy Brown, which were produced for the Chicago Defender and other papers, are also covered in detail, as is the story of the licensing of her characters for dolls and toys.  This fascinating and detailed look at an under-appreciated corner or comics history looks like it will make for a rewarding read.
retail price - $35.00  copacetic price - $29.75

TCJ 292The Comics Journal #292
Are you ready?  Do you think you can handle it?  Yes, this issue contains a mind-boggling 120-page interview -- over 100,000 words! -- with the Deitch family cartoon dynasty.  Starting off with big daddy Gene Deitch (read an excerpt here) who regales readers with tales of his storied career creating bebop illustrations, Saturday morning cartoons and Sunday newspaper comic strips, the interviews continue with underground comics legend, Kim Deitch, whose interview provides a fascinating tour of the 1960s underground comics scene, and whose interview was so long that they actually had to cut it (but the trimmings are available to read here, whew!) and his lesser known, but nevertheless talented siblings, Simon and Seth. 
retail price - $12.95  copacetic price - $11.75

Eisner Expressive Anatomy

Expressive Anatomy for Comics and Narrative
by Will Eisner with Peter Poplaski
The third and final volume in the "Will Eisner Instructional Series" -- following the essential classic Comics and Seqential Art and its sequel, Graphic Storytelling and Visual Narrative Expressive Anatomy was nearly complete before Eisner's death and offers plenty of tips and guidance in this crucial area that lies right at the heart of cartooning.
retail price - $22.99  copacetic price - $20.00

cometbus 51Cometbus #51: The Loneliness of the Electric Menorah
by Aaron Cometbus
A book length excursion into the people and places that together make up the history of the Berkeley, CA alternative bookstores centered on Telegraph Avenue that played no small part in the history of the 1960s counter-culture explosion that reverberates to this day.  Aaron focuses primarily on the personalities involved, and there's a veritable deluge of empathy here, so be prepared to be carried  away.
retail price - $3.00  copacetic price - $3.00


Galago, Volume 01 -  From the Shadow of the Northern Lights:
An Anthology of Swedish Alternative Comics
Hey you comics fans of all things Scandanavian, here's 200 pages of dark, brooding, self-conscious, introverted tales of foreboding, angst, self-doubt, self-pity and more, all originating from the center of Scandanavia -- Sweden!  There's really quite a variety of drawing styles and story-telling schemas on display here, more than you might think; so if this sounds interesting, don't forget to take a look, because our supply is small.
retail price - $19.95  copacetic price - $17.77

Mcsweeney's 28McSweeney's #28
This time around, Mcsweeney's presents us with "eight individual books, fully illustrated, which resurrect and reinvent the art of the fable -- simple, suprising, and morally direct.  More or less."  Each of these books is a snappy little hardcover, the cover illustration of each of which join together (and are held together in this cleverly designed package) to form two large painted images by Danica Novgorodoff.   The books are:  Poor Little Egg-Boy Hatched in a Shul by Nathan Englander, illustrated by Jordan Isip; The Book and the Girl by Brian Evenson, illustrated by Philip Fivel Nessen; The Guy Who Kept Meeting Himself by Ryan Boudinot, illustrated by Genevieve Sims; LaKeisha and the Dirty Girl by Tayari Jones, illustrated by Morgan Elliot; The Thousands by Daniel Alarcón, illustrated by Jordan Awan; Two Free Men by Sheila Heti, illustrated by Liz Lee; Virgil Walker by Arthur Bradford, illustrated by Jon Adams; and The Box by Sarah Manguso, illustrated by Louie Cordero.
retail price - $24.00  copacetic price - $21.50

Items from our September 2008 listings may now be purchased online at our new site, HERE.

ordering info

New for August 2008Love and Rockets New Stoires #1

Love and Rockets: New Stories #1
by Jaime, Gilbert & Mario Hernandez
Love and Rockets is dead!  Long live Love and Rockets!!  What we mean is:  Love and Rockets, Volume 2, the standard comic book size format series which has carried Love and Rockets through the last eight years, is no more.  In it's place we have the first issue of Love and Rockets: New Stories, a 100 page annual (Annual?  Only one Love and Rockets per year?  How will we survive?  ¡sob!) of all new work by the one and only los hermanos Hernandez.  This time out of we have a whopping 50 pages (which is, believe it or not, only the first half of this epic yarn) of hi-jinx superheroics delivered as only Xaime can, plus -- count 'em -- six new Gilbert stories and, as an added bonus, a new collaboration betweeen GIlbert and Mario.  You'll want to take your time with this one, and savor every moment.
retail price - $14.99  copacetic price - $12.75

MOME 12MOME Vol. 12 - Fall 2008
edited by Eric Reynolds and Gary Groth
MOME delivers another top notch issue featuring:  David B., with the third in his series of amazing medieval tales, "The Drum Who Fell in Love"; "Dirty Family Laundry," a tense and intense tale by last issue's cover featured artist, Killoffer; "Train" by Dash Shaw; a handful of one-pagers by Tom Kaczynski;  a stroll down history lane by Sophie Crumb; Nate Neal's "Reality Comics Quartet," which is almost a comic book in and of itself; Ray Fenwick's continued adventures of "The Truth Bear"; another dose of creepiness courtesy Al Columbia; and the rookie efforts of newcomers Sara Edward-Corbett, Olivier Schrauwen, Jon Vermilyea and Derek Van Gieson.   Recommended.
retail price - $14.95  copacetic price - $12.75

Wholphin 6
Wholphin No. 6 - DVD
Here's what's on deck this time around:  "Lizards, John Cleese, Lee Harvey Oswald, freat white sharks, Toddy Doyle, sasquatch hunters, Daniel Handler, cockroaches, intolerable guy next door, surreal dating with Michael Cera, Chinese third graders dabbling in American style democracy" and more!  Lucky, a six-minute Australian film that is the cinematic equivalent of Vaughn Bodé's one-page comics masterpiece, "A Nickel Ride," is, for our money, the most profound short-film ever made.  Please Vote for Me, a 32-minute excerpt from a documentary film of the same name that covers an elementary school election in China, should be seen by everyone in this election year, as it provides the most intimate portrait of an election we've ever seen, and, for those viewers who are paying attention, offers many insights into the democratic system, and, especially, the problems facing any transition from an autocratic system to a democratic one. 13 films, 141 minutes.  Preview it here.
retail price - $19.99  copacetic price - $17.77

All Known Metal BandsAll Known Metal Bands
compiled and edited by Dan Nelson
Looking like nothing so much as a facsimile of the register at the dock where you catch the ferry to Hades, this deluxe hardcover edition inscribes on black paper the names of all 51,000 known metal bands that -- figuratively, at least -- took this trip.  An ideal aid for contemplation. 
retail price - $22.00  copacetic price - $19.75

Thrizzle 4
Tales Designed to Thrizzle 4
by Michael Kupperman
Taking quirky to a whole new level for the comics fan of today, Michael Kupperman pulls another hippo out of a hat and delivers the fourth issue of TDT.  Snake 'n' Bacon and the Scaredy Kids are joined by a pen & ink (and pencil!) circus of unparalleled wackiness in a comic book that has been "Designed to get your family through its entire day!" 
retail price - $4.50  copacetic price - $4.00

WHere the Demented WentedWhere Demented Wented: The Art and Comics of Rory Hayes
edited by Dan Nadel, Glenn Pouncey & Glenn Bray
Widely considered the most "out-there" of the original generation of American underground cartoonists that burst on the comics scene in the 1960s, Rory Hayes -- who died twenty-five years ago -- finally gets his due in this comprehensive volume compiled and edited by Dan "Picturebox" Nadel & Co., which includes a remembrance of things past by Rory's brother, Geoffrey Hayes. Not for the faint-hearted (nor anyone under 21 years of age), this volume contains work that can perhaps best be described as a piercing shriek from a tortured soul, released in ink on paper.  Hayes was engaged in an ultimately failed attempt to exorcize his demons and the evidence is all right here. There are other pages where, his agony spent, Hayes indulges in wistful hopes, which are, in hindsight, clearly naught but interludes.  A singular talent whose work prefigures some aspects of Fort Thunder and Paper Rad and others of the Kramers Ergot set, Rory Hayes is gone, but, clearly, not forgotten.
retail price - $22.99  copacetic price - $20.00

Grotesque 2Delphine 3Delphine 3
by Richard Sala
Grotesque 2: Cryptic City
by  Sergio Ponchione
The two latest installments (the 29th and 30th, for those who like to keep track of these things) of the Ignatz series of comics each provide their own brand of frisson.  Choose your poison.
retail price - $7.95  copacetic price - $6.75

GEntleman Jim

Gentleman Jim
by Raymond Briggs
introduction by Seth
This landmark 1980 work by the creator of the Certified Copacetic Classic, Ethel and Ernest, has been reissued by the fine folks at Drawn & Quarterly, and not a moment too soon, we say.  Raymond Briggs was way ahead of the curve when it came to producing fully fleshed human characters in comics.  This slim 32 page full color hardcover is a treasure.
retail price - $14.95  copacetic price - $12.75

Popgun 2Popgun, Volume Two
edited by Joe Keating & Mark Andrew Smith
Also from the folks at Image comics, this is the second annual Popgun collection (and, yes, we still have the first in stock).  Strarting off with a spiffy Paul Pope cover, this massive 472-page full color collection includes work by Nikki Cook, Dean Haspiel, Donald Hello & Simon Oakey, James Kochalka, Erik Larsen, and many, many up and coming new comics creators.  The highlights for us is Copacetic Customer, Jim Rugg's new Afrodisiac story along with the hybrid Ragazza Pippistrella / Makaroni Pillpal tale by the amazing -- and new to us -- Ralph Niese (check out this story along with much, much more at his web gallery, here) .  And Here's the Popgun page that includes 30 pages of previews.
retail price - $29.95  copacetic special price - $25.00

Meathaus sosMeathaus s0s bMeathaus: S.O.S.
edited by Chris McD, Brandon Graham & Matt Gagnon
This one is also a (slightly less) massive 272-page ful color anthology of new comics.  The creators are, on balance, a tad more adventurous than those in the Popgun anthology.  Intriguingly, the sole point of overlap between the Popgun and Meathaus volumes is that this volume too contains another all-new, all-different Afrodisiac story by the aforementioned Jim Rugg.  Also on offer here are works by James Jean, Farel Dalrymple, Tomer & Asaf Hanuka, Jesse Moynihan, Jim Campbell, Dave Kiersh and rising star, Dash Shaw, among a host of others.  Check out this big preview on Nerdcore.
retail price - $30.00  copacetic price - $26.95

Blurred 4

Blurred Vision #4
Weighing in at 232 pages, this is the biggest and quite possibly best issue yet of this 8 1/2" x 11" B & W anthology of "new narrative art" from New York City.  BV regulars Toc Fetch, Ethan Persoff, Karl Stevens and Kevin Mutch are joined by a host of newcomers including recognized creators such as Matt Madden and K. Thor Jensen.
retail price - $14.95  copacetic price - $12.75

Too COol Alex RobToo Cool To Be Forgotten
by Alex Robinson
An all new 125-page hardcover graphic novel from the creator of Box Office Poison, at a great price.
retail price - $14.95  copacetic price - $12.75

AFHoward Chaykin's American Flagg! - Volume One
By (yes) Howard Chaykin, with the able assists of Ken Bruzenak (letterist) and Lynn Varley & Leslie Zahler (colorists)
introduction by Michael Chabon; afterword by Jim Lee
Well, all we have to say about this one is: IT'S ABOUT TIME!  The comic book series that launched the revisionist renaissance of the heroic fantasy genre of the 1980s, American Flagg! raised the bar on so many levels it's hard to know where to begin.  Original in conception, pioneering in execution, fun, sexy and truly adult (as opposed to "adult" as a code word for prurient), American Flagg! laid the foundation for the 1980s comics boom that followed.  This chunky hardcover volume contains the the first 12-issues, which together form a single work expertly divided into four, 3-issue story arcs (which were subsequently released as trade paperbacks -- yet another way in which American Flagg! was way ahead of the curve).  Also included are:  the 10-page introduction that was produced for the first of the trade paperback collections; the 2-issue "epilogue" originally ran in AF! #13 & 14; and (read it and weep all you long time AF! completists) an all-new 12-page story featuring Bob Violence.
retail price - $49.95  copacetic price - $44.44

Comics Comics 4Comics Comics #4
It'a about time!  The latest issue of the magazine of the comics cogniscenti is now in stock.  This issue's cover feature is the one and only Shaky Kane, whose amazing early 1990s work has been sadly neglected; until now!  Frank Santoro provides a heartfelt appreciation of Shaky's place in the comics universe and follows it up with a revealing interview.  And that's just for starters.  This issue also features:  "The Death of the Comic Book" by Sammy Harkham; An in-depth review of Steve Ditko's late works Avenging Mind and 160 Page Package by Tim Hodler who also reports on Dave Sim's recent dual release of Glamourpuss #1 and Judenhass as well as providing a close reading of Kentaro Miura's Berserk; Brian Chippendale writes on Brian Michael Bendis(!); the second major feature in this issue is on Woody Gelman, the hidden figure behind many of the Topps gum card series such as Mars Attacks, Funny Monsters and many, many others that have faded from memory (he also was instrumental in the creation of Bazooka Joe, threw some work R. Crumb's way when he was just starting out and served as a mentor to  Art Spiegelman); and to cap it all off are full page comics by designer, Mike Reddy and Copacetic fave, Dan Zettwoch (and don't forget, that when we're talking about Comics Comics full page means a whopping old old school 17" x 23"!).  Essential reading.
retail price - $2.95  copacetic price - $2.50

The Comics Journal #291
While on the subject of comics journalism, we can't neglect to mention the rag that started it all!  And the conjunction of these two is all the more fitting as this issue of the Journal contains an in-depth review of Frank Santoro's Storeyville; also this time out we have interviews with Tim Sale and Josh Simmons along with a 32 pages of full color comics classics by overlooked maestro of animal antics, Dan Gordon, and much more.
retail price - $11.95  copacetic price - $10.75

Cold Heat Special 5Cold Heat Special #5
by Frank Santoro and Ryan Cecil Smith
A rare treat, this is a hand made edition, limited to a mere 100 copies, w/ hand silk-screened (on a nice heavy stock) two-color front and back covers that comes complete with endpapers, no less.  As for the contents, this time out we witness a brief interlude in the life of Castle wherein she and her now diseased father are out in the woods, hungry and looking for food.  Aesthetically speaking, this adventure takes place roughly half way between Storeyville and Black Hole on the comics spectrum.  As with the first four Cold Heat Specials, this will NOT be collected with the forthcoming graphic novel.
copacetic price - $8.00

A special New York City edition of the Encyclopedia Destructica.
copacetic price - $8.00

TOri Amos TattooTori Amos Comic Book Tattoo
This insanely gigantic full color comic book compendium of comics interpretations of Ms. Amos's songs is sure to be of interest to those of her fans who are also comics readers.  Notable comics talents included in this collection are Hope Larson, Dame Darcy, Carla Speed McNeil, Mark Buckingham, Ted McKeever, Colleen Doran and many, many more.  Introduction by Neil Gaiman.
retail price - $29.95  copacetic price - $26.95

500 Essential500 Essential Graphic Novels
by Gene Kannenberg, Jr.
There are plenty of surprises here in Dr. Kannenberg's fully illustrated and highly idiosyncratic list of his top 500 graphic novels, which is most valuable for the obscure and rare works it unearths.  Even jaded "know-it-alls" (guess not!) such as ourselves discovered new works that we now have to track down and decide for ourselves whether or not we too will deem them "essential."
retail price - $29.95  copacetic price - $26.95

Items from our August 2008 listings may now be purchased online at our new site, HERE.

ordering info

New for July 2008

Drawing Word & Writing PicturesDrawing Words & Writing Pictures:
Making Comics - Manga, Graphic Novels, and Beyond
by Jessica Abel & Matt Madden
We all knew it was only a matter of time until this day arrived, and so it has: the first textbook devoted to the practice of creating comics is now on our shelves.  Billed as, "A definintive course from concept to comic in 15 lessons," the primary purpose of this work is to provide a state-of-the-art textbook for high school, trade school and college courses devoted to comics craft -- thus the 15 lessons, the average number of classes in a semester.  Authors Abel and Madden (who are wife and husband, and, more germane to their authorship of this work, veteran comics instructors, most notably at SVA [the School for Visual Arts] in NYC) have not, however, forgotten about the rest of us, for they have designed the book with both lone, individual-learners -- "ronin" -- and independent study students who might like to get together and create their own self-directed learning groups -- "nomads" -- in mind.  Of special note in this regard is the book's companion website, , which is chock full of extra features and sample work that will help to keep on track those lacking the guiding hand of a professional instructor.  "Well, yes," you say, "that's all very interesting.  But is the book any good?"  While we haven't managed to spend enough time with it yet to provide our own judgement, here's the opinion of the two individuals most qualified to offer one:  "A gold mine of essential information for every aspiring comics artist.  Highly recommended."  - Scott McCloud, author of Understanding Comics  "Matt and Jessica's experience, both in the classroom and at the drawing board, has resulted in a book that should help any aspiring cartoonist.  A go-to how-to that will undoubtedly be of tremendous aid for any school or instructor attempting to map out a thoughtful and engaging cartooning curriculum." -- James Sturm, founder and director of The Center for Cartoon Studies  And there you have it.
retail price - $29.95  copacetic price - $26.95

BIG Little Nemo 2

Little Nemo in Slumberland - Many More Splendid Sundays
by Winsor McCay
Edited by Peter Maresca
It's here!  The follow-up volume to the most heralded collection of classic comics ever produced.  This volume is even more packed with art and features than the first volume, the printing is every bit as gorgeous, and the binding has been improved.  In the face of this Sunday Press edition, it's a challenge to find an adequate superlative!  We're working on it...
retail price - $125.00  copacetic price - $125.00

Nat TurnerNat Turner
by Kyle Baker
Mister Baker, perhaps the funniest cartoonist alive, steps out of his clown shoes and puts on his severest suit and tie to deliver this sermon of repression and defiance, violence and vengeance, and struggle and sacrifice, in this synecdochical story of slavery in these United States.  Reading this book, in which the narrative is advanced almost entirely in images (pantomime style) interspersed with excerpts from The Confessions of Nat Turner, it is impossible not to marvel at the strength of Baker's storytelling.  And, there is a method to the madness of attempting to relate so complex a tale entirely in images.  It captures the forced silence of the lives of the slaves it chronicles, a silence that was doubled by the forced illiteracy imposed by the slave owners.  It was exactly this imposed silence that Nat Turner intuited was at the root of the condition that he felt called upon to rise up against and destroy.  Thus the interspersed text stands as the beacon that Turner meant it to be, and when the long silence of the narrative is punctuated by a lone cry, it takes on both an urgency and a poignancy as a result of its standing alone.  Here's a hefty preview that might take a moment or two to load, but rest assured your patience will be amply rewarded.  As will any purchaser of this elegantly produced (and quite reasonably priced) 208 page softcover edition.  The character of Nat Turner is one of the fiercest embodiments of anger on the American historical register, and Baker's depiction doesn't hold back, revealing a wellspring of anger in Baker's soul.  That he has both chosen and managed to channel this anger into a successful career (see below) based on making people laugh is a testament to his character and a powerful demonstration of the truth embedded in the old adage, "Laughter is the best medicine."
retail price - $12.95  copacetic price - $11.75

How to Draw StupidHow to Draw Stupid
by Kyle Baker
Yes, that's right:  two new Kyle Baker books in one month.  Our cup runneth over.  The first thing you should know about this book is that, while it is indeed a how-to-draw art book, it's NOT for people who want to learn how to be Artists, or how to "express themselves."  This IS a book for those who are looking to learn the ins and outs of cartooning, who are interested in becoming professionals, who want a career -- especially those who need some encouragement and could use some common sense advice.  The sound, solid and simple premise upon which this book is based is that if someone is or was successful then their work is worth studying, and their opinions are worth listening to.  Anytime Jack Kirby, Will Eisner and Frank Miller do or say something, it is, ipso facto, worth paying attention to -- your investment of time and energy will be rewarded with personal improvement and career advancement.  Kyle Baker is successful, therefore you should pay attention to what he has to offer if you too are interested in being successful.  How to Draw Stupid is a potential supplement to Abel & Madden's Drawing Words, Writing Pictures listed above.  Where DW, WP takes the programmatic approach of traditional pedagogy, HtDS take the personal approach of the master-apprentice relationship.  Also, and importantly, whereas DW, WP takes a broad overview of the entire field of combining words and pictures to tell stories, HtDS is specifically directed at the narrow focus region of humorous cartooning.  If you are interested in being a successful, professional cartoonist, and, especially if you like, enjoy and/or admire Kyle Baker's work, then getting a hold of a copy of this book should move right to the top of your to-do list.  The book is written in an intimate, personal tone (it is also funny).   Reading this book really feels like sitting across from Kyle as he works at his drawing table (or as you both share a booth at the local tavern, to which he has brought his portfolio and sketchbook). We felt like he was right there, talking us through his method, telling us his opinions (of which he has many and is not shy in sharing them), intermittently leafing through his portfolio and now and then whipping off a quick sketch to illustrate a point.  Sometimes, you might feel like he's holding onto his opinions a little too firmly -- as we did when he insisted only one of fifteen different drawings of eyes was "truly" stupid (we could be wrong, but we'd be hard pressed to imagine that the "correct" answer would be chosen by a majority) -- but that's part of the charm:  he's not holding back, he's not trying to conform to any preconceived notion of "correctness", he's just being himself, a straight-shootin' cartoonist sharing the secrets of success, and makin' a buck doing it -- which is exactly what he'd recommend you do, should the opportunity present itself. 
retail price - $16.95  copacetic price - $15.25

Red ElegyRed Colored Elegy
by Seiichi Hayashi
It's hard to believe that it's taken nearly forty years for this truly original, one of a kind work to finally be published in North America in English translation, but now that it has it's like a missing chapter in the history of manga has at last been found.  This work is not one than can simply be opened up a dived into, partly as a result of its late arrival, but mostly because it is such an original piece that most readers will immediately find themselves on unfamiliar ground that seems to shift beneath them as they progress through its pages.  Seiichi was clearly a cultural omnivore and he ranged far and wide indeed in gathering his inspiration for Red Colored Elegy, which he produced during 1970 and 1971, in the wake of the tumultuous cultural upheavals of the late 1960s, which, it is not widely appreciated here in the states, created as much turmoil in Japan as in America and Europe.  His visual sources range from Utamaro and Hokusai to di Chirico and Picasso to Takahama and Tatsumi, and include incorporations of Hollywood icons such as Mickey Mouse and James Dean.  We'll have to admit to finding his narrative influences to be somewhat obscure -- due to our lack of expertise in Japanese literary historyNevertheless, it is discernable that, as with his visual sources, there is an "East meets West" feel to the idiosyncracies of Hayashi's storytelling.  There is also a clear generational opposition to the straight forward, propulsive narratives of Tezuka, as well as an alliance with the narrative indeterminacies of the cinema of la nouvelle vague.  All this is by way of preparing you for the unique experience of reading Red Colored Elegy.  It is a work full of despair and desperation that is more than a work of fiction:  it embodies the struggle of its author to forge a way in the world; to survive the 'slings and arrows of outrageous fortune'; and, finally, to build and hold a lasting love.  How successful this work was in achieving these, we cannot say, but Red Colored Elegy most certainly left a lasting legacy that is at last being shared with American readers.  Here's an excellent preview that will give you a good idea of what we're talking about.
retail price - $24.95  copacetic price - $22.22

by Yoshihiro Tatsumi
introduction by Frederik Schodt
Good-Bye, the third volume in Drawn & Quarterly's series collecting the work of this manga master who pioneered the dark, mature (noir, if you will) genre of manga known as gekiga during the years that followed the cultural upheavals of 1968, has been released in tandem with Red Colored Elegy as the work it contains was produced during roughly the same historical moment.  This volume collects storieds originally published during 1971 and 1972 and contains some of Tatsumi's best work.  The introduction, by America's foremost expert on the history of manga, sets the work in context and gives the reader a good perspective from which to get the most out of the stories that follow.  Those who missed the first two volumes in this series, The Pushman and Abandon the Old in Tokyo (both of which are still in print and available here at Copacetic), are encouraged to take a look at this one, as it's the best yet.  Sceptical?  Check out this nice nine-page preview.
retail price - $19.95  copacetic price - $17.77

K ChroniclesThe Complete K Chronicles
by Keith Knight
This mammoth 500+ page volume collects under one cover the four previously issued volumes -- Dances With Sheep, Fear of a Black Marker, What a Long Strange Strip It's Been and The Passion of the Keef -- that together contained the entirety of one of the most consistently entertaining regularly published comic strips in recent memory.  This is the rare volume that actually deserved to be called a treasury edition (so, of course, it was not) as so many of the strips contained herein are gems, and put together constitute a sizable treasure.   The K Chronicles amply demonstrates the special power of humor to get you through.  The old Freak Brothers adage, "Dope gets you through times of no money better than money gets you through times of no dope," might be more aptly (and accurately) reworded to read, "Good, smart & funny comics get you through times of no money better than money gets you through times of no good, smart & funny comics."  Thus, this book should be considered an excellent hedge against the coming inflationary pressures that may occasionally leave one bereft of disposable income.  Seeing this book on our shelves in and of itself constitutes one of "Life's Little Victories™" that Mr. Knight has made his own.  Highly recommended to all those who enjoy witty social and political observations in the grand tradition of the original glory days of Mad Magazine, those who, in other words, like a good laugh that leaves them a bit wiser.  Spend some time up close and personal with Keef, here.
retail price - $24.95  copacetic price - $22.22

ZOT! :  The Complete Black and White Collection
by Scott McCloudZot B & W
Well, while we're on the subject of mammoth complete collections, what better time could there be to bring this nearly 600 page tome that collects the entirety of the 26-issue black & white run of Zot! that was published between 1987 and 1991.  This run comprises issues #11 through #36 of the original series; the first ten issues were in full color, and, as McCloud explains in his introduction, are not included in this collection for the simple reason that McCloud doesn't believe the stories they contain are strong enough.  Just in case you're late to the party:  McCloud is the author of the ground breaking and still definitive study of comics, Understanding Comics, as well as their follow-up volumes Reinventing Comics and Making Comics.  In addition to simply being a fine book of comics, this collection is especially valuable in allowing readers the opoportunity to witness McCloud's development as an artist and writer.  McCloud has proclaimed that his motivation in writing Making Comics -- his most recent work -- was to prepare himself for undertaking a full-fledged comics project of his own, making now a good time to revisit the work that embodies his youthful enthusiasm for the form, to prepare us to better appreciate the mature works to come.
retail price - $24.95  copacetic price - $22.22

Flight 5Flight - Volume Five
edited by Kazu Kibuishi
Yes, it's time for another 360 page anthology of full color fantasy inflected comics of an international flavor that leans towords the pacific rim.  Contributors this time around include Graham Annable, Matthew Bernier, Scott Campbell, Tony Cliff, Michel Gagné, Reagan Lodge, John Martz & Ryan North, Paul Rivoche, Joey Weiser and over a dozen others including editor Kibuishi, who also handles the cover chores.  There's something for everyone here:  from baseball games to ninja battles, from polar bears to dragons to robots (and robot dragons), from space travel to couch surfing and plenty more.  Here's a great preview
retail price - $24.95  copacetic price - $22.22

Windy City 2
Windy City Magazine #2
This issue features more full color comics in Prismacolor colored pencil by its editor, Austin English, who has also, it seems, managed to convert publisher, Dylan Williams, to the way of the crayon, as his contribution (Williams is an established comics writer/artist as well as publisher) is his first full color work and it is rendered entirely in oil pastel.  Other notable contributions to this anthology publication are a historical overview of the works of legendary children's author/illustrator, Lois Lenski -- also by Austin English --  and, the highlight for us, a lengthy illustrated interview (conducted by fellow cartoonist and pal, Jeremy Onsmith) with the one and only John Hankiewicz, who proves himself to be as articulate about his work as he is in control of it.  The issue comes to a close with a full color back cover illustration by Copacetic customer, Juliacks.  Recommended for fans of MOME who are ready to adventure a bit farther afield, and anyone else interested in the intersection of comics, art and illustration.
retail price - $10.00  copacetic price - $8.88

Lucky 2

Lucky: Volume Two, Number Two
by Gabrielle Bell
The best journal-based comic book currently being produced continues with 32 pages of personal reflections, general misconceptions, urban angst, travel tales,  and vignettes hanging out in the internet age.  Centered on Bell's current life in NYC, the settings range from trips to the west coast and recollections of her childhood in Alaska to frustrations with her computer and troubles with rabbits.  While a sense of ennui is pervasive and seemingly unavoidable, Bell makes it clear that it is to be resisted, and that making comics is the battleground.
retail price - $3.95  copacetic price - sold out!

Rabid Rabbit #4 - 8
This is a nice anthology series out of New York City that we somehow missed out on, until now.  We suspect the contributor list is populated in part by current and former students of SVA (as well as at least one instructor, David Sandlin).  This is a good thing.  The comics here, while generally focused on urban themes, are diverse in their styles and approaches.  Each of these issues is devoted to a specific theme, to wit:  #4 - Trash; #5 - Alphabet City; #5 - The Future; #7 - Pornography (18+ only, natch'); and #8 -- The Beatles!  Issues #4 - #7 are digest size and are 36, 32, 40 & 48 pages respectively; #8 is 8 1/2" square -- and squarebound --  (to resemble a record jacket -- The White Album, in this case) and runs a big 64 pages.  Learn more at:
#4 - #7:  retail price - $3.00@  copacetic price - $2.75@
#8:  retail price - $6.00  copacetic price - $5.00

Items from our July 2008 listings may now be purchased online at our new site, HERE.

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last updated 30 September 2008