SPACE’d Out in Columbus

Categories:  News

spacecon.jpgWhen I told Liz that I’d be heading down to SPACE in Columbus, OH this weekend (April 21-22), I figured that she’d be completely stoked. Just imagine: one of the writers she’d picked up for The Daily Cross Hatch is volunteering to drive two and a half hours each way to check out a small press comic con in Columbus and get some material for the blog. And she was excited – her reply went something like: “That’s great! And what a coincidence – I’m going to APE this weekend!”

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This Week

Categories:  News

Hey All,

Family emergency. Liz will be managing the ship this week. See you all in May.

 –Brian H.

Bookhunter by Jason Shiga

Categories:  Reviews

By Jason Shiga
Sparkplug Books

shiga-bookhunter.jpgBookhunter is a library police investigation caper featuring badass Special Agent Bay and his crack team of book archival and library technology specialists. The story is set in 1973, of all years, so don’t be surprised when they mention 75 baud modems in passing!

The case is the theft and forgery of a 17th century English bible, originally kept at the Oakland Public Library and on loan from the Library of Congress. While the book’s private underground market, or “grey market,” value is never mentioned, you realize pretty quickly that rare book theft is serious business and worthy of jumping off multi-story buildings. Though based on an actual case, liberties were clearly taken.
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Thing we would go to if we were in New York (which we are)

Categories:  News


This is not for those who have already decided they will go to go to The Salon/CBLDF bash, but for those with that certain special spark of spontaneity. It’s for those who read this announcement about an event on the same day it’s happening, and think to themselves, “I’ll go to a party in the middle of the week to support a good cause. Mother can wait.”

Here’s the nitty gritty…

If you like: Nick Bertozzi, Cubism, comic book retailer Gordan Lee, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, free speech, or you’re just a krazy kat for the dixieland/swing/blues music of The Cangelosi Cards.
Place: The Village Pourhouse
Address: 64 3rd Avenue in Manhattan
Date: TODAY, April 26, 2007
Time: 7pm to midnight

The Beat has the rest of the juicy party details.

Be there or be square.

—Elizabeth Chou

Out of the APE Jungle, Part 2

Categories:  News

susies-cafe.jpgThis is Susie’s Cafe across the street from the APE convention hall. It was a happy and bustling little shack diner that smelled like bacon heaven. We had just dragged our tired selves out into the dimming sunlight of the industrial streets after a long day of feeding on comics, and this was the perfect place to settle down.
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Optic Nerve #11 by Adrian Tomine

Categories:  Reviews

Optic Nerve #11
Adrian Tomine
Drawn & Quarterly

tomine-opticnervenumber11.jpgAdrian Tomine has a way of taking his already lonely characters and ripping them even further away from society, even as they attempt in socially weird ways to reach out. With the exact same motion, he sets up a psychological wind tunnel that pulls unsuspecting readers into the minds of those isolated characters. Though I wouldn’t call this a formula of his, this is usually the thing about Tomine’s work that gets me.

In Optic Nerve #11, his conclusion to his trilogy about Ben Tanaka and his long drawn-out break-up with his girlfriend, Tomine does not take the story quite that far. Instead of a story about a person cut off from society and indulging in their obsessions in extreme ways, this particular arc is almost too mundane and common. After all, it’s about a guy with a few annoying peccadillos getting the brush off from his girlfriend who is sick of his self-absorption. Typical relationship stuff, if you ask me.
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Commune by Maxeem Konrardy

Categories:  Reviews

By Maxeem Konrardy

communecover.jpgCommune is a book I acquired in trade. I was sitting at a table, my first con, and its author Max was sitting across from me. I looked awkward and nervous. He looked careless and smart. I figured he must write good comics.

So when he got up to make the rounds and seemed interested by the books on my table, I offered him an exchange. Too polite to say no, but not so guarded as to hide the horror on his face, he gave me the only book on his table and I gave him everything I had. It couldn’t have been enough for a book this nice. I knew it immediately.
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Out of the APE Jungle, Part 1 of ???

Categories:  News

APE 2007This was my first visit to APE so you’ll have to forgive me for my somewhat haphazard, non-veteran, not-quite-insiders look at the whole thing. I missed most of the big names like Gene Yang and Renee French, and I completely ignored art spiegelman doing his signing, though I made it a point to sit in on the panel discussion.

I even tried my best to stop by all of the major publishers, but in the end, I thought it safe to assume that they’d still be around afterwards with their businesses, websites and overall presence in the scene.

The spirit of the event really hit me when I walked up to Liz Baillie‘s table and she showed me the usual stack of comics for sale, and then, with just as big a smile, directed my attention to some B&W xeroxed versions available to anyone willing to do a trade. Of course! The biggest star at this convention was the ocean of self-publishers and independent artists, and I wasn’t about to let this opportunity to see them all in one place pass me by—the plentifulness just about flattened me.
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