Is there one book that is a “must have” that came out this week? My friends Andy Tom (@AndrewJTom), Chris Campbell (@ChrisCampbell8), Marc Diefenderfer (@Dief88), Shane Hannafey, Adam Besenyodi (@adambesenyodi), Joey Nazzari (@CaptDS9E), and I (@ChrisCCL) are sharing some comic book collected editions, reprints and/or graphic novels released this week that you may be interested in.
Picked by @AndrewJTom
Conan Volume 1 The Frost Giants Daughter and Other Stories HC and Conan Volume 7: CImmeria HC (Dark Horse)
There are weeks when a guy looks at the release schedule and (regardless of quality) nothing grabs you and says, “This is a book that I need to check out.” Well… that’s what happened to me this week. So, I’m going “back to the bookshelf”.
Recently, I started following Cary Nord on Twitter and it reminded me of how much I enjoyed his work on his often underappreciated Conan run from Dark Horse. You see… a few years ago I decided that I was going to try reading some Conan comics. I bought a copy of Savage Sword of Conan (Vol. 1) and I found a couple of the more recent Conan trades on the ding and dent shelf at my LCS. What I discovered in those trades was absolute gold. Kurt Busiek and Cary Nord have crafted a series of Conan comics (currently available in trade and HC) that are so enjoyable that I’ve read several of them on multiple occasions. With these Conan trades you can jump in anywhere and be swept away to lands with fierce monsters, dastardly villains, and beautiful women. They’re modern in style, yet “pulpy” in feel.
Around vol 6 or so, Busiek and Nord turned the creative duties over to Tim Truman and Tomas Giorello. The goodness that Kurt and Cary started continued into their run. These men crafted some great stories as well; and the Conan series of books doesn’t miss a beat. Along with the beautiful artwork of Giorello, we get art by three of my favorites, “Papa” Joe Kubert, Richard Corben, and Darick Robertson.
Once again, I’ll stress that these trades are written so that you can “jump in” on any volume, while still maintaining a running narrative through all of them (personally, I started with vol. 6, 7 & 8… vol. 7 being my favorite). I HIGHLY recommend that you check these books out. Most of the trades are priced around $16-$18 (before any discount) and clock in at around 190 pages (a great value these days). Also, because (I love all of you CCL readers so much J). I had a talk with good friend Cameron Merkler (owner of www.instocktrades.com). I’m very pleased to let all of you know that you can buy any of Dark Horse’s Conan books (even the older stuff) at a discount of 45% off. Just go towww.instocktrades.com and Cameron will hook you up (btw, order $50 worth of stuff and you get free shipping to). Now go read some Conan!!!!
Picked by @CaptDS9E
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Works, Vol. 1 HC (IDW)
The first seven issues of the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series plus the Raphael Micro-Series issue are collected in this hardcover collection, reproduced in full-color, $49.99
Since IDW picked up the TMNT license, they have been releasing the original B&W versions in every single way possible. Then they continued by releasing newly colored versions in issue form. So it was only a matter of time before the first Hard Cover of those arrived. This collection covers issues 1-7 of the original main series, and the the original Raphael One shot, in it’s new colored glory. Everyone knows who the TMNT are at this point. There have been multiple animated series, one animated movie, and 3 live action movies, with one more on the way. Add in the brand new comic series by IDW (which I also highly recommend), and you know the tale of Mikey, Donnie, Leo, Ralph, Splinter and April. However the shocking thing is how many people have never read the original series. If you are a fan of TMNT from the other mediums, or started reading the new TMNT comic series, then you owe it to yourself to go back and pick this book up. Read the stories that made this property one of the greatest pop culture success stories in our lifetime. It’s darker and more mature then the cartoons, movies, and comics, but it is a blast. You will not be disappointed, go pick it up, or I will send Shredder after you.
Picked by Shane
Flash Gordon: Zeitgeist Vol. 1 TP (Dynamite), $29.99
Flash Gordon was my gateway drug to the SciFi genre. Some of my first SciFi memories are ones of watching the thirties Flash Gordon serials rerun on my local PBS TV station. From there I discovered other SciFi on TV as well as books and comics. But I always loved Flash Gordon and always returned to him. I was of the generation that watched the Flash Gordon animated series on TV and the 1980 flick on the big screen and I won’t beat around the bush, I loved that cheesy film! I also read a lot of the Flash Gordon comics over the years. Compilations of the early comic strips, any of the old King and Gold Key comics I could get my hands on, as well as the Marvel and DC mini-series. Dynamite has done some great stuff with their licensed properties and Flash Gordon definitely ranks up there among them. I bought the first issue when it hit the stands, but since mostly transitioning over to collected editions, I held out buying the rest of the issues and opted to wait until the trade came out. Taking from some of the original thirties story lines, but also borrowing from other incarnations of Flash Gordon including that 1980 film and throwing in Nazis to boot, this should be a fun read. This 200 page volume contains the complete 10 issue run so check it out!
Picked by @adambesenyodi
G.I. JOE: The Complete Collection, Vol. 2 HC (IDW)
Volume 2 contains issues #13-25 along with extras such as character file cards and an introduction by Mark W. Bellomo that sheds light on the creation of the series, $49.99
If I had to pick one book that epitomizes my comic fandom of the ’80s it would be Marvel’s G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero. More than Avengers, more than X-Men, more than Alpha Flight… G.I. Joe was the book my buddy Mark and I called our own. My love of that title led me to devote an entire chapter of my book to the series and exploring the incongruity of that love: I don’t come from a military family, have no male siblings, and my liberal parents raised a liberal me. But somehow G.I. Joe architect Larry Hama found a way to pull me into this jingoistic world right from the Baxter-papered first issue, and straight on through until I bought my last issue four-and-a-half years later. The series has bounced around in the collected editions world… first being reprinted in trade paperbacks by Marvel, then by IDW. Now IDW is bumping the series up with a five-star promotion. The second volume in the gorgeous, hardcover, oversized Complete Collection series includes the legendary “Silent Interlude” issue #21 with the first appearance of Storm Shadow. By all accounts, Mark W. Bellomo is curating this new collection with the same affection so many of us have for the title by presenting issues in their entirety and correct reading order (like including 2008’s issue #21.5 in this volume), fun extras like a vehicle blueprint gallery, and information to properly contextualize the series. This is a must-buy for anyone who came of age reading comics in the ’80s.
Picked by @ChrisCCL
Lone Ranger A Little Golden Book Classic HC (Golden Books), $3.99
I know what you’re thinking. At first glance why would Chris recommend a 24 page book aimed for children ages 2-6? It’s simple, really, this Little Golden book was first published in 1956 and is only now getting reprinted. beautifully done by writer Steffi Fletcher and artsistE. Joseph Dreany. No doubt because of the upcoming movie with Armie Hammer and Johnny Depp. So if you want a true classic for all ages — Hi Ho Silver!
Star Trek: John Byrne Collection HC (IDW)
Collects Assignment Earth, Crew, Leonard McCoy: Frontier Doctor, and Romulans: Pawns of War, $49.99
John Byrne is of course one of the industry’s greatest writers. His work on X-Men and Fantastic Four is bucket list stuff and he was responsible for rebooting Superman in the 1980′s with Man Of Steel. Here, with his work on Star Trek, is complete and is some of the best Star Trek comics ever written. My personal favorite is Leonard McCoy: Frontier Doctor. It’s a lighthearted 4-issue series that explore Bones shortly before the events of Star Trek The Motion Picture. If you’re a fan of DeForest Kelley or even Karl Urban, this series and hardcover is for you.
Now it’s your turn. What books that came out this week do you recommend? Take a look at the sidebar to see this weeks collected edition releases.