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New for April 2015

by Nick Sousanis
Believe it or not, it's been over twenty years since the publication of Understanding Comics, which established the breakthrough realization that the most effective way to truly explain how comics work is in comics form.    Now, at last, we have the next generational iteration of this understanding:  that the most effective way to explain how comics in specific - and consciously thinking in and making images in general - are changing the way we represent our world and understand ourselves is also in comics form.  Unflattening, just published by Harvard University Press, is the book form of Sousanis's Columbia University dissertation, "Unflattening: A Visual-Verbal Inquiry into Learning in Many Dimensions" -  the first ever presented at the university entirely in comics form.  This work challenges the primacy of words over images in Western culture and asks readers to view them as equal partners.  A book for our times, indeed.  Here is a thoughtful reaction to the original dissertation by Sydni Dunn at Chronicle Vitea.  Learn more about Unflattening, and catch up with Mr. Sousanis at his website, Spin, Weave & Cut
retail price - $22.99  copacetic price - $20.00

Crickets #4

by Sammy Harkham
The Wait Is Over!  Crickets #4 is here.  48 pages; magazine size; cardstock cover; heavy newsprint interior.  Written and drawn by Mr. Harkham (w/ Kevin H. assists!).  This issue  is nearly entirely devoted to continuing the epic saga, "The Blood of the VIrgin," which began in #3.  This issue finds Seymour & Co. on the set and off, making the film, dealing with actors, directors and producers.  The home front is not neglected, as the reader is made privy to moments that Seymour is not.  "The Blood of the Virgin" is an omniscient third-person narrative in the classic tradition of the late-nineteenth century naturalistic novel, but set in Vietnam-war era Los Angeles and told in comics form; not something you encounter every day, to say the least.  This is a comic book to savor, enjoy, put away and then, when the time is right, pull out and read again, filled, as it is, with page after page of comics that make you glad you know the language.
retail price - $8.00  copacetic price - $7.50


Maple Key Comics #6
by Joyana McDiarmid & Co.
This issue wraps up most of the ongoing story lines, bringing to a (temporary) conclusion a run of six on time issues containing in toto over 1500 pages of engaging and enjoyable comics of every stripe  -- all in the course of a one year period.  Quite an accomplishment!
retail price - $18.00  copacetic price - $15.95


Revenger #1
by Chuck Forsman
It's here: the first issue of PIX 2015 special guest, Charles (aka Chuck) Forsman's new, ongoing - "close to monthly" - full color action(violent)adventure comic book series.  Back cover by Ben Marra.  Look for #2 next month!
retail price - $5.00  copacetic price - $4.44


The Weight #1
by Melissa Mendes
The first issue of PIX 2015 special guest, Melissa Mendes's ongoing serialization of a graphic novel inspired by a short memoir written by her grandfather that was written shortly before he passed away last year.  His life - and this comic - begins on a depression-era farm somewhere in America...
retail price - $5.00  copacetic price - $4.44

2x S! + 4X Mini-Kus

by Teri Ekhebom, Amanda Vähämäki, Lala Albert & Marie Jacotey
Yes, we've just received our latest and most plentiful shipment of Latvian comics – via John Porcellino's Spit and a Half distro – and there's quite a variety on hand, with comics from around the world, most notably, Portugal, Finland, France and the Americas.  These pint-sized comics pack a full color punch and bring great comics to a wide readership, enabled in part by the publisher's outreach to and partnership with a variety of national European arts organizations.  Well worth a look next time you're in.
S! -
retail price - $12.00@  copacetic price - $12.00@
Mini-Kus - retail price - $5.00@  copacetic price - $5.00@


BoxUrchinUnMPiggy4X Retrofit Comics

by Jack Teagle, Niv Bavarsky, Box Brown & Laura Knetzger
And, yes, here's another small press comics bonanza courtesy of a single publisher, this time around the Philadelphia-based Retrofit Comics, which also has been able to produce such an abundance of work through a partnership, in this case with the Washington, DC-based retailer Big Planet.  Both the quantity and even more importantly, the quality of the comics released under the Retrofit imprint have dramatically improved since they've teamed up with Big Planet, so it seems that partnering up has a lot to recommend it!
retail price - $4.00 - $12.00@  copacetic price - $3.60 - $10.00@

by Junji Ito
Here it is:  the complete collection of the horrific precursor to Junji Ito's cult classic, Uzumaki.  Gyo presents page after page of pen and ink terror, as nature runs amok, shocking and terrifying the population of this coastal community.  This volume also includes two bonus horror tales by Ito:  " The Sad Tale of Principal Post," and "The Enigma of the Amigara Fault," making for 400 pages of classic horror manga in all.
retail price - $22.99  copacetic price - $20.00

Donald Duck: "The Pixilated Parrot"
by Carl Barks
The greatness continues!  1950 was the year of Carl Barks.  Along with the title track this volume includes the mega-classics, "In Ancient Persia," "The Magic Hour Glass," "Big-Top Bedlam," the lesser know but nonetheless classic Christmas tale, "You Can't Guess," and perhaps the greatest summer vacation comic book story ever penned, "Vacation Time."  Also on hand are a lone ten-pager from WDC&S #117 and three low-profile tales that accompanied "Vacation Time" in the pages of Vacation Parade #1:  a one-page written but not drawn by Barks, and two tales that are drawn but, unusually, not written by Barks; one featuring Grandma Duck, and one Donald and his Nephews.  And, finally, there are the standard end notes about each of the tales, each penned by a noted Barks scholar.  A summer vacation read for the ages...
retail price - $29.99  copacetic price - $25.75


Harvey Kurtzman: The Man Who Created Mad Magazine and Revolutionized Humor in America
by Bill Schelly
The life of one of Comics' indisputable geniuses finally gets the in-depth treatment it deserves in this illustrated - and illuminating - 640 page biography from comics historian, Bill Schelly, which we are currently offering at a special introductory special price.  Can't wait to dive right in?  No need to, you can start right now, with this PDF preview.
retail price - $34.99  copacetic price - $29.75

HTBDHow To Be Drawn
by Terrance Hayes
How To Be Drawn has arrived!  The latest volume of poetry by Pittsburgh's own MacArthur Fellow, Terrance Hayes, this 100 page collection is divided into three parts, each composed of ten pieces (decalogues?) --Troubled Bodies; Invisible Souls; A Circling Mind -- followed by an epiloguical closer.  While firmly grounded in Hayes's own personal landscape, the thirty-one poems collected here roam the world, from "Russia's red-light districts" to New York's Chinatown, explore histories and cultures, and celebrate a cornucopia of creators and creative forms -- most abundantly, musicians and music; most succinctly, writers and writing; and, most centrally (and, from the vantage point here at The Copacetic Comics Company, most intriguingly) visual artists and drawing -- each and all in the service of constructing a suitable place for now, in which necessity will not be throttled, and compassion thrive.  This collection is unquestionably the most formally inventive of Hayes's career, yet despite its risk taking -- both playful and serious -- the attention to language never strays and every word is judiciously chosen and placed.  Each piece will be a delight to those who treasure the form.  Sample a poem -- one that coalesces some of the volume's themes --  now, HERE.
retail price - $20.00  copacetic price - $17.77

Items from our April 2015 listings may now be purchased online at our eCommerce site, HERE.

New for March 2015

SCSaint Cole
by Noah Van Sciver
No one does contemporary, working class (yes, even here in the 21st century, this remains a useful descriptor), slice of life comics like Noah Van Sciver.  While he is highly prolific in the short form, Saint Cole is only his second - published - graphic novel.  In this volume, rather than another "slice of life" drama, it might be better to describe this as a slicing and dicing, chopping and grinding, pulverizing and grating and shredding of life.  Saint Cole is at times almost unbearable to read, as it charts four days in the life of Joe Cole, a 20-something working stiff with a food service job, a girlfriend, a baby, and a problem with alcohol.  He is living on the edge, and over these four days, precipitated by a snowballing of bad decisions, made one after the other with no inkling of where it is all leading until it is too late, he is pushed over it and his life takes a calamitous fall. 
The narrative construction provides the protagonist with a simultaneous confrontation with "the three ages of woman" in the form of the innocent teen hostess at his work, taking her first steps into the world; his girlfriend / mother of his child; and his girlfriend's brutalized, world-weary mother (would-be mother-in-law).  This construction allows an essentialization of the protagonist's life to occur in his relations with these three women, its stages compacted into this brief span of days, concluding with a harrowing, fearful portrait of an all-consuming, matured, maternal female desire.  As for the significance of the work's title and conclusion:  it would seem that Van Sciver has allowed his protagonist to obscure reality with a veil of madness; as the weight of the world's sins which have descended upon his own life becomes too much to bear, causing his corporeal life to descend into hell, his æthereal self is thereby allowed to ascend to heaven... as Saint Cole.  A cautionary tale for our times that simultaneously serves as an indictment of American society, Saint Cole is a portrait of quotidian depravity that is expertly and efficiently rendered by Van Sciver; one that offers up an effective and affecting example of the communicative power of the comics form. 
retail price - $19.99  copacetic price - $17.77


March: Book Two
by John Lewis, Nate Powell & Andrew Aydin
The second volume in a trilogy, March: Book Two continues John Lewis's autobiographical account of the civil rights era that culminates in the epochal "March on Washington" that took place on August 28, 1963 and was the site of Martin Luther King, Jr.'s legendary "I Have a Dream" speech.  At 192 pages, this volume is significantly longer than the first and provides more in-depth coverage.  Between flash-forwarding brackets of the Obama presidency, it shows the horrific trials and devastating sacrifices of the civil rights struggle that took place in the south during the early years of the 1960s. 
retail price - $19.99  copacetic price - $17.77

R30R31Retrofit Comics #30: Mowgli's Mirror
by Olivier Schrauwen
WOW!  This is an amazing comic book.  This oversize (10" x 12") comic book magazine is filled with 44 pages of stunning pantomime (silent) comics, composed entirely in blue and orange - and combinations thereof.  You really need to hold this one in your hands and take it in, one spread at a time.  Jungle Book was never like this!  RECOMMENDED
retail price - $8.00  copacetic price - $7.50

Retrofit Comics #31: Drawn Onward
by Matt Madden
The long awaited return of Matt Madden in this 32 page romance comic.  Appearances, perceptions, differences; build up, break down.
retail price - $5.00  copacetic price - $4.50


Art Comic #1

by Matthew Thurber
Matthew Thurber's take on the art school comic is idiosyncratic, to say the least.  Mixing obsessions, NYC art world celebrities, an Ivanhoe art performance (not really) and a prayed for imagined return of Jesus (sort of) into a zany, surreal comics cocktail, Art Comic lives up to it's name.  Let's hope that it's inclusion of "No. 1" in its title is not ironic, and that we can look forward to future issues.
retail price - $8.00  copacetic price - $8.00

ISIntelligent Sentient?
by Luke Ramsey
Published under Drawn & Quarterly's Petits Livres imprint, Intelligent Sentient? is presented as a series of striking images arranged around the theme of abstracting contemporary consciousness executed in a complex cartooning language that is shared by the likes of fellow Canadians, Michael DeForge and Jesse Jacobs, but there are clearly hints of a narrative embedded within the sequence that can be teased out by readers as they flip through the pages; each will feel the process of looking gradually evolving into the the experience of reading.  Get a foreshadowing of this by visiting the D&Q page with an embedded slideshow of select pages from this horizontally formatted hardcover.
retail price - $22.95  copacetic price - $20.00

FMFreud & Marx
by Corinne Maier & Anne Simon
Freud, the founding father of psychoanalysis, and one of the towering figures in the landscape of the modern world, is a daunting figure.  Marx, perhaps even more so. 
The most important figure in the history of communism, which ended up becoming a core component of the central narrative of the 20th century, Marx gave his name to Marxism, and in the process became a figure simultaneously revered and reviled, worshipped and feared, respected and denigrated; in short, one of the most controversial figures in history.  Yet, he was also a mere mortal, who grew up, fell in love, and had a family.  While, naturally, gaining a full appreciation of the life and work of these two titans would involve years of study, now, in this pair of full-size, full color, 56 page, hardcover comics biographies, that are equal parts entertainment and education, readers will have a chance to get a feel for their lives and work, as well as gain an appreciation for their accomplishments and respective places in history.  Yes, learning can be enjoyable.... in comics!
retail price - $19.95@  copacetic price - $17.77@


Comics Workbook Magazine #7

edited by Andrew White, Zach Mason & Frank Santoro
The return of CWM!  This issue features an interview with Gabriel Corbera by Anthony Meloro, an interview with Oliver East by Warren Craghead, an interview with Sab Meynert by Annie Mok, an overview of Brazilian comics by Thales Lira, a group essay titled "I Really Don’t Think I Would be into Comics Today If I Hadn’t Read Manga" curated by Andrew White, and an interview with Jed McGowan by Zach Mason; cover by Sab Meynert.
retail price - $2.50  copacetic price - $2.25


The Buried Giant
by Kazuo Ishiguro
A new novel by Kazuo Ishiguro is always a cause for celebration.  To learn more about it, read Neil Gaiman's NYTimes review.  Catchup with Ishiguro himself with this unusual encounter with the author, involving his musical aspirations, in the Guardian UK,  and here's the Guardian UK's review by Tom Holland.  Finally, here's a dissenting opinion by James Wood, who is less enthralled with the work, in The New Yorker.   Of course, it is your own take on it that matters most...
retail price - $26.95  copacetic price - $23.75

Items from our March 2015 listings may now be purchased online at our eCommerce site, HERE.

New for February 2015


Love and Rockets: New Stories #7
by Gilbert & Jaime Hernandez
The wait is over!!!  The longest stretch yet between issues has ended and the new issue of Love and Rockets has arrived.   Is that Hopey and Maggie together there...?  No need to wait any longer to find out!
retail price - $14.99  copacetic price - $11.99

by Gilbert Hernandez
And if reading the new issue of Love and Rockets leaves you wanting more, you're in luck, as the latest installment of the Love and Rockets Library has also just been released.  248 more pages of the epic Luba saga are now available in this just released collection, the eleventh volume of the official Love and Rockets Library series.  This volume picks up where Luba and Her Family left off in the mid-90s, and contains work that was originally created and published in the late 1990s, also during the hiatus between the first and second volumes of Love and Rockets, collecting the comics that appeared in the pages of Luba #3 - 9, Luba's Comics & Stories #2 - 5 and Measles #3.  Dark impulses lead to violence and despair, are channeled through sex, role playing and other games, occasionally leading the players to the light of recognition and realization in these engrossing tales in the great sopa de la gran pena tradition.
retail price - $19.99  copacetic price - $15.99

CCCorto Maltese: Under the Sign of Capricorn
by Hugo Pratt
Originally published in 1970-71 in Europe, and partially published in translation in North America in the mid-1980s by NBM, the six stories collected here in Under the Sign of Capricorn mark the official return of Corto Maltese!  One of the great creations of European comics, the Corto Maltese saga -- along with it’s creator, Hugo Pratt -- have been justly celebrated for decades in Europe, and won many an adherent here in the states as well – including no less a luminary than Frank Miller, who praises Pratt as “one of the true masters of comic art.”  Series editor – and co-translator – former editor and publisher of Eclipse Comics, Dean Mullaney (who has here revived the Eclipse logo to serve anew, as the logo for a new IDW sub-imprint, Euro Comics, which is publishing this volume) has taken pains to present this work as it is meant to be seen and the reproduction of the art as well as the production values of the book itself – a large format edition with extra heavy paper stock and scored covers for ease in reading – are both sure to please.  Best of all is that there’s more to come, as this is only the first of twelve volumes in what, based on the evidence so far, seems likely to live up to the promise of being “the definitive English language edition.”  Take a quick look here.
retail price - $29.99  copacetic price - $26.95



by Aisha Franz
Fantasy and reality blend in this delicately rendered 200 page graphic novel from Germany.  Two sisters and their mother are home together (along with the present absence of the [philandering] husand/father) – but also alone with their thoughts.  Past, present and future possibilities mesh to varying degrees for each of them, with the younger, pre-pubescent, sister looking forward, the mother looking back, and the older, adolescent, sister powering through the present.  A fable for our times.  Check it out in this PDF Preview.
retail price - $19.99  copacetic price - $17.77


by Lucy Knisley
Following fast on the heels of An Age of License, here's another travelogue in a matched edition.  This time around readers will follow Lucy to the Caribbean as she is recruited to chaperone her aging grandparents on a "getaway cruise." This trip leads indirectly to a multi-genrational micro-saga in miniature; role reversals are experienced, insights are gained and laughs are had, all delinieated in Knisley's multi-faceted and increasingly adept melange of drawing, journaling and cartooning; full color throughout. 
retail price - $19.99  copacetic price - $17.77

HSHappy Stories About Well-Adusted People
by Joe Ollmann
The work of Joe Ollmann has been flying below the radar for well over a decade now (Seth states in his blurb that he is “criminally under-appreciated”).  While there has long been a core cadre of Copacetic customers who have been hep to Ollmann’s unique brand of Canadian-inflected, sarcasm-filled, self-flagellating satire, these classic gems have had difficulty gaining traction with a wider audience.  It is the hope that this new Conundrum Press colllection wil go some way towards rectifying this situation and connecting new readers with this most deserving work.  Nothing is spared here in these tightly structured, fluently written tales that are drawn with a keenly expressive edge.  Ollmann is driven by a deep empathy for suffering; doubtless his own, but also very much so for that of others, sensing the pain that lurks below the surface in his fellow humans.  That said, it is clear that Ollmann’s core competency lies in delineating culture clashes and the psychological toll they take on those on the borders of their respective cultures, and especially those that are stuck right in the middle.  Here, he is in his element, and he delivers.  Happy Stories is a 242 page “omnibus” that contains “most” of his Doug Wright Award-winning collection, This Will All End in Tears, and “the best stories” from his other major and now-out-of-print collection, Chewing On Tinfoil, as well as two new stories, created "just for this book.”  Introduction by noted Canadian comics scholar, Jeet Heer.  What more do you need to know?  Recommended!
retail price - $20.00  copacetic price - $17.77

phPhotobooth: A Biography
by Meags Fitzgerald
Meags Fitzgerald, this quirky volume's creator, fell in love with the old school (read, employing the photochemical process, as opposed to digital) photobooth.  Realizing that the photobooth was fading out, due - as with so much else - to the unyielding economic imperative, she embarked on a journey to document the depth and breadth of the life and times of the photobooth.  Travelling through North America, Europe and Australia, sketchbook, notebook and camera in hand, she documented the photobooth in situ around the world.  She then proceeded to reach out to the global photobooth community (yes, there is such a thing; why should you be surprised?)  and received ample supporting materials including, most importantly, plenty of photobooth photos.  The result is this 276 page comics history that provides an in-depth look at what may be the sine qua non of  machine age ephemerality, a small room that sets up and then captures a fleeting instant in a life - often lives in tandem, as couples and friends were among the most frequent patrons of the photobooth, cementing a relationship in a strip of self-consciously posed photos that are among the classics of 20th century mementos.  Reading this book, you'll have a greater understanding of why.   According to one sestimate in the book, the supply of old school, photochemical-based, photobooth paper will run out this summer, so anyone inspired by this book to seek these out for a last hurrah, might want to start planning a trip to the photobooth of their choice now...
retail price - $19.99  copacetic price - $17.77


The Portable Not My Small Diary
edited by Delaine Derry Green
You will simply not find a better selection of personal, independent, small press comics in one place for anywhere near this price point.  Here, for a measly $8, you will find 212 pages of personal diary form comics by a who’s who of 21st century small press and self-publishing comics creators including John Porcellino, Misun Oh, Dan Zettwoch, Ramsey Beyer, Dave Kiersh, Alec Longstreth, Sarah Oleksyk, Julia Wertz, (Pittsburgh’s own) Lizzee Solomon, Alixopulos, Hellen Jo, Kurt Wolfgang, Joel Orff, T Edward Bak, Donna Barr, Sam Spina, MariNaomi, Jeff Zenick, Lucy Knisley, Carrie McNinch, Liz Prince, and many, many more! Culled form the pages of Green's long running series of the same name, these comics take up-close and personal looks at a wide range of topics as only comics can; making for a simultaneously edifying and entertaining experience.
retail price - $8.00  copacetic price - $8.00

Cold Heat Special #10
by William Cardini
The pink and blue are back!  William Cardini has teamed up with Frank Santoro and Sacred Prism to show that there’s life in the old girl yet.  The “old girl” we’re referring to here is Castle™, the hero(ine) of the cult classic comic book series, Cold Heat that ran for either six or eight issues, depending on how you look at it (the last two issues were both double issues; 5/6 & 7/8), along with, now with this issue, ten stand alone Cold Heat Specials by ten different artists, each involving some (widely varying) degree of involvement with series co-creator, Frank Santoro.  This time out we have a 16 page two-color (pink & blue, ’natch) Risograph that has Castle meeting the minotaur in the maze, but, of course, there’s a hallucinatory twist along with Cold Heat specific plot elements.  Get it now before it vanishes into the haze of rarity along with all the other Cold Heat Specials...
retail price - $5.00  copacetic price - $5.00

NHNow and Here
by Lale Westvind
Now and Here is a 16-page risograph with a wraparound cover, printed in blue on pink interior pages and cream cardstock for the cover.  The approach to comics on display in Now and Here provides evidence that Westvind is refining her sensibility and honing in on some specifics.  Her loose, angular artwork here might put some readers in mind of Yuichi Yokoyama, who wouldn’t be wrong to relate the two creators.  The concerns of the narrative – such as it is – can also be seen to inhabit the neighborhood of Ron Regé, Jr. and Theo Ellsworth in its persistent questioning and exploring of the nature of consciousness and the perception of time.  A stronger sense of frustration pervades the pages, however, and there an is almost antagonistic quality to its prodding of reality’s cage.  As have countless others before her, Westvind has created a “fantastic realm” of the imagination here – a psychic space within which to confront her frustration with the quotidian.  It is one that shares some structural similarities with the multiverses of superhero™ comics (such as The Marvel Universe™), yet hers is clearly personal.  Her comics precursors are more underground that mainstream – in as much as the remnants of attachment to specific fantasy are fetishes of the motorcycle outlaw and high-heels – and have been finely filtered to strain out as much as possible of extraneous attachment to contemporary popular power fantasies; in both script and art her approach is concerned with creating new and personal abstractions that share little with those typically found in comics that operate in this realm. With its staccato narration and total absence of dialogue, an entirely interior space is created that communicates the struggle of reaching towards an intentional agency in a world of dictated consequences. 
retail price - $5.00  copacetic price - $5.00

MrIMr. Incompleto
by Josh Bayer
When superhero sagas bore deep into the mind, they blend in with the surrounding grey matter and transmute what they find there, turning it to their own, ultimately unknowable ends.  Mr. Incompleto is a highly idiosyncratic (and that's putting mildly) take on comics space opera.  This 48 page black and white comics magazine contains a furious pen & ink foray into the history of comics that ferries the spirit of Fletcher Hanks in the vessel of 1970's era Guardians of the Galaxy™ adventures (NOT the team of the recent film).  And, while the narrative is very involved with time travel and its related paradoxes, the actual creation of this work is very much a work of time travel as it is currently practiced by our species, in which the "travel" involves immersing the mind in the past by employing a melange of  memory and preserved cultural artifacts, in this case old comic books and classic reprint collections thereof.  And then there is the iconography of the character of Mr. Incompleto himself, a hooded figure with a cigar-chomping face for a body and a swinging crucifix that is permanently aloft, suggesting roots in Christianity, Freudian psychology and, naturally, comics itself, as the clenched-jaw chomping on a cigar is a classic comics trope.  So, in a nutshell then, Mr. Incompleto is a comic book that is best approached with a dual frame of mind to simultaneously follow the progress of the narrative and decipher the embedded codes.  Not a comic book for everyone, certainly, but there is a fairly singular pleasure of the text to be had here.
retail price - $6.50  copacetic price - $5.85

Titan #1
by François Vigneault
Sure you can read this comic online, as it is being serialized @ (see below), but there's nothing like the real thing when it comes to comics. Titan #1 is a 32-page, duo-tone comic book, printed on nice newsprint, and staplebound into a full-color cardstock cover.  Nice. (currently in progress)

retail price - $4.95  copacetic price - $4.44


The Tiny Report: Micro-Press Yearbook 2013
by Robyn Chapman
On the 12 pages and massive double-sided fold-out center-fold data-table contined within the Charles Forsman rendered cover illustration of a confrontation of human and machine, Robyn Chapman has assembled a detailed report on the state of affairs in the "micro-press" community during the year 2013 that will make for engaging reading to anyone who considers themselves a part of this self-same community.  Text, photos, diagrams, charts and more!
retail price - $3.00  copacetic price - $3.00


A Girl Is a Half-Formed Thing
by Eimear McBride
Accruing accolades and awards by the bushelful, McBride's novel employs a staccato, jump-cut prose style reminiscent of Samuel Beckett, and puts it to new and original uses in this harrowing coming of age tale.  Here's Anne Enright's review in the UK Guardian.  And, Here's James Woods in The New Yorker.
retail price - $24.00  copacetic price - $21.75


Retromania: Pop Culture's Addiction to It's Own Past
by Simon Reynolds
We've been getting a lot of positive feedback from customers on the copies of this book we've sold here at the shop, so we've decided that it would be a good idea to offer it up on the site as well (and by doing so, perhaps indulging in a bit of "retromania", as this book was published three years ...).  To got some idea of what to expect here, check out this fairly lengthy interview with the author, that's illustrated with YouTube videos!
retail price - $16.00  copacetic price - $14.44

Items from our February 2015 listings may now be purchased online at our eCommerce site, HERE.

New for January 2015

NBSam Zabel and the Magic Pen
by Dylan Horrocks
Many years in the making, this long awaited work is Horrocks’s first graphic novel since his epochal Hicksville, published way back in 1998. Sam Zabel is more or less Horrocks’s pen & ink alter ego, and The Magic Pen is, at its core, a roman á clef in comics, but, intriguingly, a roman á clef that is primarily concerned with the author’s fantasy life as lived through the consumption and creation of comics. As such, this work manages to cleverly function as both an escapist fantasy and a meta-comics commentary on the nature of this fantasy and the role which comics play. This is, of course, far from the first time that comics have been employed to comment on fantasy as a key component of the life of the mind. One can make an argument that it has been a central pillar in the edifice of comics since day one, beginning with Winsor McCay’s demonstration of comics’ ideal suitability for conveying dream and fantasy in Little Nemo in Slumberland (and Dreams of a Rarebit Fiend, as well), which marked the dawning of the comics era. The originality embodied in the Magic Pen lies in Horrocks bringing this tradition successfully into the age of the graphic novel. There is a hint of Dante’s Divine Comedy here; instead of wise Virgil leading Dante through the realms of Christian theology as informed by classical Greco-Roman philosophy, we have sexy manga/anime girl, Miki guiding Sam through the fantastic realms of comics – the historical as well as the creative processes that brought it into being through pen and ink on paper (which, given New Zealand’s relative proximity to Japan, both seems appropriate and adds another layer of significance). That the relationship(s) between the sexes and the nature and boundaries of gender are keys to most if not all fantasy – at least of the variety that makes its way into comics – is amply on display here, as repressed, oppressed and otherwise frustrated sexual energies are clearly sublimated in the the rituals and activities that take place in the comics fantasies of The King of Mars and The Queen of Venus which are the inner core of this work, created by the “magic pen” of the title, which here conflates the the pen’s symbolic value as a phallus with that of a metaphor for creativity (as in “the pen is mightier than the sword”). This magic pen both brings sexual fantasies to life and redeems the creator by doing so. Horrocks also cleverly integrates the act of collecting comics in such a way as to demonstrate the key role played by the comics collector/dealer ecosystem in the maintaining and transmitting comics history. This works especially well here in that Zabel, as Horrocks, is a New Zealander, and the history of New Zealand comics is relatively uncharted territory compared to that of the US, and certainly far less familiar to readers here. So, while the generic conventions on display will be familiar to most readers, it is easier to imagine the possibility of there being undiscovered comics in far off New Zealand. And, of course, there is the comics work itself. The art Horrocks has produced here is the finely crafted work of someone who has been honing their craft for twenty plus years. Not only is it uniformly fine throughout, it is also his first full color work of any significance, and while he acknowledges some “generous colouring help” from some peers, the coloring is perfectly suited for the work and belies Horrocks’s relative inexperience in this area. This is a graphic novel. You can dive right in now with this PDF preview.
retail price - $29.99  copacetic price - $25.75

NBNBNBNBMutual Paradise #1 - #4
by Lizzee Solomon
Adventurous comics readers looking to start 2015 with a bang should consider turning their attention to Lizzee Solomon’s self-published series, Mutual Paradise. Between the covers of the four issues published so far, they will encounter page after page of arresting – and diverting – comics and cartoons that will glom onto their brains and start rewiring them. Solomon is an artist who casts her mind’s eye in a very particular direction – and it should be stated at the outset that this is a direction that not all readers will want to themselves pursue – but those who are ready, willing and able to get a handle on the psychological states that are externalized onto finely wrought fleshiness and projected onto surreally distorted surroundings will find themselves both intrigued and informed. We have been selling these in the shop for awhile and are glad to at last have got our hands on enough copies of the first four digest-sized issues to offer them here. Each contains 32 black and white interior pages contained in a full color wraparound cover. Interested potential readers can preview much of her work at

retail price - $5.00@  copacetic price - $5.00@

NBYouth Is Wasted
by Noah Van Sciver
Noah Van Sciver has been quietly making comics since 2006. Now, in 2015 he can look back on a solid body of work of ever increasing quality. Some of the very best has now been collected in this volume from AdHouse Books. The 100 pages of comics on offer here range from self-deprecating autobio to wryly ironic satire, and include forays into traditional genres such as folk tales and science fiction (with a sociological twist), but the core of his work are the deeply empathic tales of humble twenty-somethings trying to get by in our mixed up world. Well developed characters are presented with a pithy psychological verisimilitude that draws the reader in and holds them there. Van Sciver is working in the tradition of R. Crumb, David Collier, and middle-period Chester Brown, producing gritty, emotionally rich comics that ring true. Carve a moment out of your busy day to read the comics in this generous PDF preview. Keep up with Noah and check out some comics at The Little Blog.
retail price - $14.95  copacetic price - $13.75

by Eric Haven
UR marks the return of Eric "Tales to Demolish" Haven. UR is a collection like no other, filled with 48 pages of pulse-pounding, full color comics bound together in a very stylish edition complete with silky smooth dust jacket. Here in these pages you will come face to face with Man Cat, Reptilica, Bed Man, Dream Lord of the Night Sky,and... The Equestrian! You will also have the opportunity to follow along with Havens alter-ego, Race Murdock in a series of increasingly unnerving four-panel adventures. Readers who are already familiar with Havens work will have some idea of what to expect, but to others who have yet to trod these strange pathways we can only say, Beware! After reading the comics contained in UR, you may never see things quite the same way again. An innocuous distraction can suddenly veer off in a most unexpected way. Check out this PDF preview of Man Cat to see what were talking about. Catch up with Mr. Haven by reading this recent interview with him, conducted by Tom Spurgeon.  
retail price - $14.95 copacetic price - $13.75


Notebook Drawings: 2012 - 2014

by Jim Rugg
This is the second collection of Jim Rugg’s mind-bending, eye-poppin’ ballpoint pen drawings. It too is a cleverly formatted volume, resembling a spiral notebook, but this time around the notebook itself has gone a bit upscale, with a heavier stock and debossed title logo. The drawings themselves continue in the tradition established in the first volume, with the added twist that several are 3D drawings – using a red pen and a blue pen – that have been composed in 3D at the time of drawing, in other words drawn twice, once in red and once in blue, by hand in the notebook. Don’t try this at home! Only Jim Rugg could pull this off. To prevent impressionable minds from biting off more than they can chew, the PDF preview does not include any of these 3D drawings. Only 300 copies were printed, so don’t snooze on this one.
retail price - $35.00 copacetic price - $35.00


First Year Healthy

by Michael DeForge
First Year Healthy is a bit of a departure for DeForge. This 32 page, full color, hardcover work employs the superficial structure of an illustrated children’s fable to none-to-subtly subvert this genre’s assumptions. The story starts out strange and, as this is a Michael DeForge story we’re talking about, of course gets stranger. Clean lines delineating a flattened perspective filled with lush, vibrant colors present a story that starts out in a fish market, involves sexual shenanigans and mental illness, and features an immigrant, a gun, a knife, a holiday dinner, a baby and a holy cat. We’ll let you see for yourself how they all fit together.
retail price - $14.95 copacetic price - $13.75


Frontier 5

by Sam Alden
The fifth issue of Youth in Decline’s artist showcase series, Frontier delivers up the latest release from the nimble hand and sharp eye of comics wunderkind, Sam Alden. An “outtake” from his ongoing work (and presumed future graphic novel release), Hollow, the 32 pages of comics on hand here employ a two-color palette to great effect. Set upon the backdrop of two sisters’ beach outing, the story deftly weaves an elegant pattern of memories and the emotional states they engender that will surely imprint itself on readers’ minds and linger there long enough to inspire re-readings designed to pick up on the nuances missed the first time around. Recommended.
retail price - $8.00 copacetic price - $8.00


Cometbus 56: A Bestiary of Booksellers

by Aaron Cometbus
Hot off the press, the latest issue of Cometbus is a 112-page, squarebound ode to bookselling in NYC that is, as the title intimates, presented as alphabetized bestiary, running the gamut from "A Is for Adam" to "Z Is for Zoo." This one is a real treat for all those for whom books play a central role in their lives, and pretty much a must read for anyone who sells books for a living. Thanks, Aaron!
retail price - $5.00  copacetic price - $5.00


Cometbus 55 3/4: East Bay Only Mostly

by Aaron Cometbus
And there's more! This time around we have a double dose of Cometbus: Previously available exclusively at Pegasus Books in the East Bay (SF) area, Cometbus #55 3/4 has at last made its way east to The Copacetic Comics Company! A rag tag assemblage of pieces of widely varying lengths, this 60-page issue starts off with a section titled, "Obituaries and Appreciations", in which Aaron reflects on a few people (and one place) in his life, including the recently deceased founder of Sparkplug Comics, Dylan Williams. These are followed by a series of essays on the East Bay, a soap box speech on self-publishing and the "undergrond press", a reflection on music scenes, a couple reviews, and closes with a series of - gasp! - poems (or, at least, poetry-like musings), "The City Disappears."
retail price - $4.00  copacetic price - $4.00


The Strange Library

by Haruki Murakami; designed by Chip Kidd
Haruki Murakami + Chip Kidd = The Strange Library: a unique blend of word and image.
retail price - $18.00 copacetic price - $15.95

Items from our January 2015 listings may now be purchased online at our eCommerce site, HERE.

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last updated 30 April 2015