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What Are You Reading?

Enter the Heroic Age

Enter the Heroic Age

Welcome once again to What Are You Reading? where we ask, “If you were stuck on an island with the smoke monster, what would you bring to read?” Yes, that was my lame attempt to make today’s edition topical. Sorry. Let’s just write that off as me being really excited to see the end of Lost.

This week our special guest is comics retailer Randy Lander, who you can find selling comics at Rogues Gallery Comics & Games in Round Rock, Texas or blogging over at Inside Joke Theatre. To see what Randy and the rest of our merry castaways have been reading, click the link below …

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Straight for the art | James Stokoe’s Silver Surfer

Silver Surfer

Silver Surfer

Orc Stain creator James Stokoe draws a killer Silver Surfer. See the whole thing over at Brandon Graham’s blog.

McSweeney’s San Francisco Panorama takes comics stars to the streets

James Stokoe's poster for the San Francisco Panorama

James Stokoe's poster for the San Francisco Panorama

Wow, newspaper nostalgia is quite the hot ticket for comics these days, huh?

First there was Kramers Ergot 7, Sammy Harkham and Alvin Buenaventura’s avant-garde anthology, printed at a massive size meant to emulate Winsor McKay’s full-page Little Nemo in Slumberland newspaper strips. Then there was Wednesday Comics, DC’s 12-issue anthology title, published on fold-out newsprint. And now there’s the San Francisco Panorama, a one-time-only “21st-century newspaper prototype” that doubles as the 33rd issue of author/publisher Dave Eggers’ McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern.

Boasting 320 pages of original content, the broadsheet-format Panorama contains full-color comics from Art Spiegelman, Chris Ware, Dan Clowes, Seth, Jessica Abel, Adrian Tomine, Kim Deitch, Ivan Brunetti, Gene Yang, Alison Bechdel, Erik Larsen (still can’t get over that) and more. It also features prose contributions of varying stripes from such comics-relevant authors as Michael Chabon, Chip Kidd, Stephen King, Junot Díaz and Michelle Tea, and a poster of the 49ers’ Patrick Willis drawn by Wonton Soup‘s James Stokoe. And there’s all the other stuff you’d expect from a newspaper — journalism, sports, features, a magazine, a book section and more. Only, y’know, all fancy-pants.

The New York Times reports that the paper has already sold through the limited run made available for sale on the San Francisco streets yesterday at the low price of $5, but it’s still available (or will be soon, that is) at the full $16 pricetag at bookstores and at the McSweeney’s site. Click here for an extensive preview.

(Times link via Pop Candy.)

Preview: Sullivan’s Sluggers by Smith and Stokoe

Sullivan's Sluggers

Sullivan's Sluggers

Back in July we first heard word that Amazing Joy Buzzards writer Mark Andrew Smith was working with Wonton Soup creator James Stokoe on a project called Sullivan’s Sluggers. Smith was kind enough to send us over some additional preview art, along with a description of the series:

Here’s a first look at “Sullivan’s Sluggers” that I’m working on with James Stokoe.

Sullivan’s Sluggers follows a team of ex-professional baseball players who play farm league teams for cash so that the farm leaguers can say that they’ve played against the pros. Our team of players are called the Dragons, and they are under the leadership of coach Casey Sullivan, who is a disgraced ex-player who spends most of his time in a drunken state trying to forget his past.

Sullivan’s Sluggers get an invitation to play a game in a Texas town called Malice against the Malice Gladiators. Upon arriving in the town, the team notices that the town seems to be stuck in the ‘50s, and something about it seems very off to them.

Unknown to the Dragons, the town of Malice has a curse on it from its shameful history. After the sun goes down during the 7th inning stretch, the other team and the townsfolk turn into monsters with an appetite for human flesh, and they start ripping into and feeding off the Dragons.

The Dragons find themselves battling their way out using all the baseball skills at their disposal, such as fastball pitches, fighting their way out with baseball bats, and communicating with secret signals, as the team rallies to survive until morning.

Sullivan’s will be completed by the end of 2009. The book will be in color at 150 pages.

Thanks for checking out Sullivan’s Sluggers and I hope you enjoyed the small preview.

Check out the rest of the preview after the jump …

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