Showing posts from November, 2008

MEGA holiday sale!!

Everything must go!! Actually, fortunately, everything DOESN'T have to go, but I thought I'd have my biggest sale ever to give thanks to those who patronage my store. So starting today, November 28th, until the end of December, I'm having a 25% off sale on all graphic novels, trade paperbacks, hardcovers, and manga! This sale is my way of giving something back to all the discriminating readers who frequent my store, especially with all of the entertainment choices available. Another thing to keep in mind, is that I don't have crazy lines (like the big box stores or malls) at Alternate Reality Comics so shopping here is hopefully less stressful in that respect also.
Lots of great comic and manga volumes are looking for great homes, so hopefully this sale will make it easier for those of you that gift sequential art and or you'll be better able to treat yourself to that book you've had your eye on. Thanks again to everyone who choses my store for their comic book…

La Muse

La Muse is a new graphic novel (well new in print form, it's been serialized online previously) written by Adi Tantimedh and drawn by Hugo Petrus (220 pages for $19.95). La Muse is Susan La Muse, an alien who's taken human form and has nth level super powers which she uses to correct the ills of our planet.

In La Muse, Adi Tantimedh fully explores what a person who has basically limitless powers could do to change the world. This graphic novel and its central character has a very liberal political activist slant, but La Muse isn't preachy, instead it's a very smart, highly entertaining graphic novel that really expands on what Alan Moore did with Miracleman years ago. Anyone who's ever read a superhero comic will appreciate how well thought out La Muse is. Alan Moore calls La Muse "wonderful" and he wouldn't lie to you, would he!?

my new sign, finally

So I finally got around to changing my store sign on the pylon sign tower that is in my strip mall center. I wished I had taken a picture of my old sign just to show what a dramatic improvement my new one is.
My old sign had white letters on a red background with a lettering font that I thought was cool and distinctive, but actually was hard to read.

The lettering font that I used for my new sign (and for almost everything I do that involves signs for the store) is a font called ccgthingamjig that I bought from ComicCraft (a company that sells licensed fonts) and is of course the same lettering for the classic Fantastic Four comic from Marvel. I originally chose black letters on a yellow background because I thought it would make an interesting inverse contrast to the sign next to mine on the pylon (The Stakeout, a bar a couple of doors next to my store), but I've always liked yellow and think it really pops out.
As you can see from these photos of my new sign, there's still a f…

Keith Knight signing Nov. 28th!

This Friday, November 28th, from 4-6pm, everyone's favorite alternative cartoonist, Keith Knight, will be signing at my shop and sharing funny stories about the feedback he gets from his cartoons.

Keith Knight is mostly known to discriminating comic book lovers from The K Chronicles, his weekly alternative comic strip, that has been collected into five small trade paperbacks, which in turn has been collected into a single, massive volume by Dark Horse this past year.
In addition to becoming a papa this past year, Keith's other baby is the daily, The Knight Life, a nationally-syndicated comic strip that the Las Vegas Review Journal has been kind enough to run in their paper for our entertainment.
The two comic strips I've posted here are from Keith Knight's The Knight Life.

And as if The K Chronicles and The Knight Life wasn't enough, Knight also does a single panel comic called (Th)ink.

Hopefully those of you reading this will have recovered from eating a lot of tof…

Pixie & Moto & Alucard

After three and a half months, it looks like our new kitties, Pixie and Moto (Moto's the grey one), have come to accept that we aren't just fattening them up to eventually eat them, and they've now joined Alacard (our black cat) in bossing us around.

Moto, doing her best to blend into our bed.

Pixie, with her kryptonite eyes, trying to make us give her more wet food (cats have really small brains so she doesn't realize that kryptonite eyes can't make a person do something).

Alucard, chilling in the garage, which is his version of going outside.

I thought it would take longer for the two new cats, Pixie and Moto, to adjust to us and their new surroundings, but now they roam everywhere and all three cats even get along as well as cats can.

Brave & The Bold & Watchmen

Tonight on Cartoon Network at 8pm the first episode of Batman: Brave and the Bold airs so set your dvr, tvo, or whatever recording device you use. If the animation looks like the screen capture I have accompanying this entry, than it looks to be good. I've liked all of the Batman animated series except for the last one titled The Batman, as I really disliked the design of the characters and I thought they cut way too many corners with that series' animation (not that I could even watch a whole episode of that series). Tonight's episode features Batman and the new Blue Beetle (who's an Hispanic teen-ager), with next week's episode featuring Batman and Green Arrow, and the week after will have Batman with Aquaman (so I'm guessing that Plastic Man as featured in the picture above will appear later, unless and episode features two other characters besides Batman).

For the second Watchmen trailer, click here:'ll have to…

Bottomless Belly Button

Another great graphic novel - I feel like a broken record this week, but this is a good thing, an actual embarrassment of riches for lovers of the sequential art medium. Today's book submitted for your consideration is Bottomless Belly Button, written and drawn by Dash Shaw and published by Fantagraphics Books. Bottomless Belly Button is over 700 pages for just $29.99 and while at first when you pick up this book, you think "wow, 700 pages!", but it actually reads fairly quickly, while being incredibly substantial at the same time.
Bottomless Belly Button is about the Loony family, who have come together upon the announcement that their parents are getting divorced after forty years of marriage. There's no forced drama within ala Lifetime television productions, rather Shaw has characters that react / process this new development in their family dynamic in the varied ways that people go through. The story construction of Bottomless Belly Button is similar to Alex Robi…

Alan's War by Emmanuel Guibert

I've read several really good comics / graphic novels the past couple of weeks and I'd say that this has been a strong year for great works of sequential art. I think today I just read (well actually finished reading) my favorite / most excellent graphic novel of 2008 and that book is: Alan's War The Memories of G.I. Alan Cope by Emmanuel Guibert. Alan's War is the story of Alan Cope going into basic training, then into his experiences in World War II, and what he did after that war. After the war Alan Cope lived in France, where he related his story to cartoonist Emmanuel Guibert, and they had a friendship that lasted from 1994 until Cope died in 1999.

The best way I can think to describe Alan's War is that it is a quiet, reflective journal of one man's (Alan) experience during a very noisy war (but probably the one war that no one can argue shouldn't have happened). Alan didn't see any combat during World War II, even though he worked in a tank (and t…

Solanin by Inio Asano

I read Solanin at the perfect time - right after reading Acme Novelty 19. As I mentioned in my previous entry today, Acme Novelty Library, while always great, is also always depressing, so reading Solanin, which is a wonderful paean to young people finding their way in the world, was just what the comic doctor ordered!
Solanin is written and drawn by Inio Asano and is a 420 page self contained manga graphic novel published by Viz Select for only $17.99 (most manga encompasses several volumes).

The central character of Solanin is Meiko Inoue, who's looking for meaning in life, having just finished college. Solanin is a rich, vibrant, slice-of-life book that shows the wonder that exists in everyday life if one just looks for it. And did I mention that the art is BEAUTIFUL (of course anyone looking at the pages I've postd here can see that)!?

As Inoue Asano says in his afterword to Solanin: "The most important messages in our lives don't come from musicians on stage or sta…

Acme Novelty Library V. 19

Acme Novelty Library is Chris Ware's blanket title for every book he does (actually they get retitled when various stories get collected into a larger book, like his Jimmy Corrigan, The Smartest Kid on Earth) and a couple of weeks ago volume nineteen arrived (hardcover, full color, 77 pages for $15.95). Although Acme Novelty Library always sells a decent amount when all comic book stores and regular book store sales are tabulated, I'd think that if Ware would make each volume as distinct as their contents and didn't have such nondescript covers, that they'd do better. Having said that though, I think Chris Ware doesn't really care about their commercial appeal or he wouldn't just create these odes to depression that Acme Novelty Library are.

The painful sadness of Acme Novelty Library volume 19 is centered on W.K. Brown / Rusty Brown, a character who is inept in the way of social graces, has difficulty interacting with others, and for whom just basic day to day…

FreakAngels: Ellis & Duffield

This week the first trade of FreakAngels written by Warren Ellis and drawn by Paul Duffield (with a coloring assist by Alana Yuen) arrived at your favorite comic store (which I hope is mine, but if it's not, please let me know why it isn't). FreakAngels debuted as a weekly six page online comic in the early part of this year and continues to run weekly at I'm going to defer to Warren Ellis in his description of what Freakangles is: "It's retro-punk, it's near future steampunk and builds on the legacy of disaster fiction." I haven't been reading Freakangels online because I don't like reading comics on the computer, but I did take a peek at it a few months ago and have been eagerly awaiting its hardcopy (trade paperback) release ever since.
Freakangels is just amazing and for me it ranks amongst the best work Ellis has ever done. One has just to look at the art by Paul Duffield (where did he come from all of a sudden!?) and you&…

Vegas Valley Comicfest 2008

Gilbert Hernadez (Love and Rockets, Sloth, Chance In Hell, Speak Of The Devil) with his daughter, Natalia Hernandez (who's in the third grade), with her first comic The Adventures of Crystal Girl.

Me with Dwayne McDuffie, writer of the excellent Justice League Unlimited cartoon, is presently writing DC's Justice League of America (in which some of his Milestone characters such as Static will be appearing next month), and some of his other writing included Beyond, Fantastic Four, and Damage Control for Marvel.
Steven Grant, holding the hardcover edition of the Punisher mini series he did with artist Mike Zeck. Grant has also written Whisper, Badlands, Two Guns, and for DC, he's written many Batman stories.

I think Vegas Valley Comicfest was a good time and seemed like a pretty good turnout. Kate said the panel she was on, Sex and Race In Comics, was well attended and she also operated the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund table, for which she signed up some new members and collec…

Neil Gaiman & Vegas Bookfest

I'm going to do this entry of last night's sequence of events covering Neil Gaiman's keynote address for the Vegas Valley Book Festival in reserve order because my best photos of the night are in reverse order.

This first photo was taken at The Mixx at the Mandalay Bay reception (which followed Gaiman's address at the Clark County Library) benefitting Nevada Humanities. From left to right is Derrick (Comic Oasis, also here in Las Vegas), Neil Gaiman, myself, and Kate (thanks for taking the photo, Holly!). The Mixx is one of those trendy expensive nightclubs that you have to wait in a line to enter. Normally I avoid such places, but a good time was had there and the view of the city from The Mixx's 64th floor is pretty incredible.

(Photo two) Yesterday morning I remembered that I had a piece of original art hanging up in my store from the Neil Gaiman written Legend Of The Green Flame, with art by the amazing John Totleben, so I took this with me and was happy to have …

Vegas Bookfest / Comicfest reminder

Tomorrow (Thursday, Nov. 6th), the Vegas Valley Book Festival kicks off with the keynote address by Neil Gaiman (Sandman, Good Omens) at the Clark County Library Main Theater (1401 E. Flamingo off of Maryland) at 7pm. They'll start giving out wristbands at 5:30pm so I'd suggest getting there early because with Gaiman's fanbase, it could fill up pretty easily. Gaiman is also going to be at the 5th Street School doing a limited signing, but I don't know exactly where that is or too much of details about that event.

On Saturday, November 8th, from 11-3pm, the Clark County Library will have the Comicfest portion of the Vegas Valley Bookfest. There will be guests, panels, comic book movies, signings, and local Vegas comic shop representation there and it's free (except for any books you buy) so stop by for a great way to close a great week! I blogged about this event on Monday, October 20th, so check out that entry for more details or pick up this week's CityLife (wh…

President-elect Barack Obama...

...and much rejoicing commenced! After a loooong campaign, yesterday and last night people in the U.S. (including early voters) finally woke up and elected Barack Obama as our 44th President. Truly an amazing night! The sheer number of people that worked (often on a volunteer basis) to make this happen has been unprecedented and for their efforts to pay off like it did in yesterdays elections is extremely gratifying and bodes well for this countries future.

So who's going to Obama's inaugural address January, 20th 2009? Actually, the better question would be who wouldn't want to go if they could, but I'll just watch it on the big screen because as incredible as his inaugural is sure to be, I'm sure people will be stacked on top of each other. I'm going to guess that his guest of honor will be Ann Nixon Cooper, the 106 year old black woman that Obama talked about in his acceptance speech last night, as she has lived through and witnessed many landmark events thro…

Obama & Vegas & the finish line!

First photo: This is the race track at Coronado High School in Henderson, Nevada, where Barack Obama appeared here in Vegas (well technically Henderson, but same difference) this morning for the 20th time since he announced his campaign for the White House. The gates opened about 6:30am and Obama arrived at 9:30am.

Second photo: In the background here you can see in big letters: "Nevada For Change" (click on photo to make the image larger). There was 15,000 people at this rally and seriously the passion for Obama as our next President is so inspiring amongst all classes, ethnicities, and age, that it's hard not to get the chills being in its presence. And I don't think this is just a case of "cult of personality", rather people really do believe that he is the engine that will drive true change and feel compelled to help make his Presidency happen.

Third photo: Nevada Democratic Senator and United States Senate Majority leader, Harry Reid, was at the rally to…