Thursday, May 3, 2018

Casey Ruggles, a new Cisco Kid, Prison Ship by Maroto, The Reprieve, the advent of cartooning in Goat Getters, The 10 Cent War, Phoenix Resurrection, Love on the Racks, Modern Gothic, and Free Comic Book Day!

Free Comic Book Day! We sent you a special email on May 1st. Act now, two titles are almost gone as I write this. Another good week for new items: The highly anticipated Casey Ruggles by Warren Tufts, a new Cisco Kid by Salinas, Prison Ship by Maroto, the award-winning graphic novel The Reprieve, the advent of cartooning in Goat Getters, The 10 Cent War, Phoenix Resurrection, Love on the Racks in softcover, Modern Gothic, PosterSpy: Alternative Movie Posters, Captain Future returns, Woodwork is back in stock...and much more.

Comic Strip & Cartoon Collections  |  Graphic Novels  |  Comics Reference  |  Art Books
  Pulp Fiction  |  Artist Edition  |  Pin-Up  |  Gerber's Photo-Journal Guide to Comic Books
Bargain Books  |  Rare & Out of Print  |  Mature Readers  |  News & Notes  |  Website Index
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Free Comic Book Day is Saturday, May 5th. Since we aren't a brick and mortar store, we always extend FCBD to a week and longer, to allow everyone possible to join in. We do please ask that you place an order, of any size, to get your freebies—that's because we can't afford to send them out to you without some reimbursement for shipping cost.

We have six new items from the publishers for this year, plus several "warehouse finds" we are adding as a special bonus, dating back to the ‘90s and the ‘70s! Place ANY size order, but at least one item, and you can choose 3 free items. Over $25, choose 4. Over $50, choose 6. Click on the box above for all available titles.

Limit is one copy of each free comic per order. You can't order 3 or 4 or 6 of just one comic. We want everyone to have a chance to get these. But if you place a second or third order, you can do it all again—there is no limit on the number of orders you can place. If we run out of anything, we'll sub in another title.


Comic Strip & Cartoon Collections

CASEY RUGGLES A Saga of the West Volume 1
1949-55. Highly Recommended. By Warren Tufts. Warren Tufts is one those rare artist‘s artists, hugely admired by top talent like Alex Toth. Tufts' assistants were another talented list: Al Plastino (Superman artist), Edmond Good, Toth himself, and the super DC creator Ruben Moreira. Tufts is not so well known to the public today, but this small body of work captured the admiration of devoted collectors for decades. Casey Ruggles appeared in American newspapers from May 2, 1949 to October 30, 1955. Classic Comics Press, 2018...More.

Item Code: CASR01H
Hard Cover - No Dustjacket, 12x9, 336pg, Full Color

Dailies, 1957-59. Highly Recommended. By Rod Reed. Art by José Luis Salinas. Classic Comics Press continues its reprinting of the complete run of The Cisco Kid with an introduction by Zoran Djukanovic. While the television show of the Cisco Kid is often spoofed, the opposite is true of this strip itself. It is held in the highest regard, and many veteran comics artists and fans are glad to add this to their library. Fine penciling and brush work are Salinas hallmarks on this amazing strip, and he uses larger panels to portray action with amazing detail. Several strips are reproduced from the original art, which is even more impressive. Classic Comics, 2018...More.

Item Code: CIS04
Soft Cover, 8x11, 240pg, b&w

Volumes 1-3 all remain available. Volumes 1 and 2 are on sale [$24.95, your price $15.95 each]. See more western-themed graphic novels on our website.

Closeout Price! Highly Recommended. By Gardner Fox and Ray Krank. Art by Dick Ayers and Frank Frazetta. This volume collects the original, first Ghost Rider #1-5 (1950-51) and also his stories from Tim Holt #12-14 (1949-50)--all considered a high point of Dick Ayers' career and some of his wildest, best work. PLUS: Those amazing Frank Frazetta covers, all four of them, among HIS best early work. Fully restored and in full color, Smyth-sewn hardcover with a new introduction by Tony Isabella. Beautifully printed. Canton Street, 2015...More.

Item Code: OGR01H
Hard Cover - No Dustjacket, 7x10, 192pg, Full Color
$49.99 $24.99

GOAT GETTERS Jack Johnson, The Fight of The Century And How A Bunch of Raucous Cartoonists Reinvented Comics
By Eddie Campbell. A rip-roaring and exhaustively researched new take on the origin of the comic strip by a contemporary cartoon storyteller, Eddie Campbell. 500 period cartoons illustrate how comics were developed by such luminaries as Jimmy Swinnerton, Rube Goldberg, "Tad" Dorgan, and George Herriman in sports and lurid-crime pages of the daily newspapers. This wild bunch of West Coast-based cartoonists established the dynamic anatomy and bold, tough style that continue to influence comics today. They also invented their own goofy slang that enriched the popular lexicon. IDW, 2018...More.

Item Code: GOAGEH
Hard Cover - No Dustjacket, 11x9, 320pg, Full Color
$49.99 $39.99


Graphic Novels

PHOENIX RESURRECTION Volume 1 The Return of Jean Grey
Collects #1-5, 2017-18. Recommended. By Matthew Rosenberg. Art by Leinil Francis Yu, Carlos Pacheco and Joe Bennett. Years ago, Jean Grey died at the hands of a villainous mutant -- and the X-Men mourned her. Jean's teammates have lived without her, and some have died. But now, when strange and mysterious events start happening all over the world, an unmistakable pattern forms, and the X-team can only come to one startling conclusion. Impossible as it seems -- the one true Jean Grey is back from the dead! We liked this; a stand-alone story which doesn't require you to be current on the X-Men universe, with many original X-Men members: Beast, Kitty Pryde (now team leader), Iceman, Scott and Logan. Bonus: 13 variant covers! Marvel, 2018...More.

Item Code: PR01
Soft Cover, 6x10, 136pg, Full Color
$17.99 $15.99

Find more X-Men collections on the website.

Highly Recommended. By Jean-Pierre Gibrat. A stand-alone prequel to the award-winning French album, Flight of the Raven. In 1943 occupied France,Young Frenchman Julien escapes from a prisoner-of-war train headed for Germany when it's bombed. Among the victims a body is identified as his. Dead to the world, he takes advantage of the situation and hides in the small village, living in his secret observation post on the village square. Loves, hatreds, jealousies, cowardice, acts of heroism play out before him--especially the beautiful waitress Cécile. Until the moment comes when, spectator no more, he must become an actor himself and meet his destiny. This hidden life he had hoped to live was just a reprieve. Some adult themes and tasteful nudity. Eurocomics, 2018...More.

Item Code: REPRI
Soft Cover, 8x11, 128pg, Full Color
$29.99 $24.99

Collected from the 1990's magazine 1984. Recommended. By Bruce Jones. Art by Esteban Maroto. Prison Warden Faye has been assigned what should be an easy mission, transporting a group of criminals in suspended animation, but after her ship is struck by a meteor and crashes, the plague-stricken prisoners escape and Faye must head out and capture them in this original graphic novel. A Barbarella-lke story with superlative fine-line art, good girl work galore, nudity and sex and lots of alien creatures. New introduction by Maroto. IDW, 2018. Mature Readers...More.

Item Code: PRSH
Hard Cover - No Dustjacket, 8x11, 104pg, b&w
$19.99 $17.99

Our Highest Recommendation. By Esteban Maroto. The amazing fine-line illustrator, well-known for his work for Warren and Vampirella, here adapts the first three of H.P. Lovecraft's most famous stories involving the Cthulhu Mythos. Created originally for an aborted French project many years ago, this was printed in the U.S. only in a limited-distribution edition by Cross Plains Press in 2000, translated at that time by Roy Thomas. Maroto was very specifically asked to make his monster look like Alex Niño's--who is a good friend, so with Niño's approval, he did! It's the best of all worlds: Maroto's beautiful rendering, epic Lovecraft storytelling and the origin of Cthulhu...and Niño-style Elder Gods and dark horror! IDW, 2018...More.

Item Code: LOVEM
Hard Cover - No Dustjacket, 8x12, 80pg, b&w
$19.99 $17.99


Comics Reference

Recommended. Edited by Trischa Goodnow and James J. Kimble. How different types of comic books and characters supplied reasons and means to support the war effort. The contributors demonstrate that, free of government control, how effective these appeals were, while often racist and extreme. The book discusses the role of such major characters as Superman, Wonder Woman, and Uncle Sam along with a host of such minor characters as kid gangs and superhero sidekicks. It even considers novelty and small presses, providing a well-rounded look at the many ways that comic books served as popular propaganda. University Press of Mississippi...More.

Item Code: THCEW
Soft Cover, 6x9, 240pg, b&w

Finally in a low-priced softcover. Signed bookplate! Highly Recommended. By Michelle Nolan. This is the first book to examine the cultural phenomenon of romance comics, which flourished from 1947 until the 1970s. Noted comics historian and collector Michelle Nolan covers the origins, the boom and bust, and each individual title in detail. Includes information on types of romance comics--the good and the awful--creators, from Simon and Kirby to Matt Baker, and a myriad of artists better known for their superhero, sci-fi and horror work! And pin-up art galore, with lots and lots of cover and splash page art. McFarland, 2008...More.

Item Code: LOVRA
Hard Cover - No Dustjacket, 7x10, 230pg, Text/Partial Color

See all comics reference books on our website.


Art Books

WOODWORK Wallace Wood 1927-1981
The stunning exhibit catalog from 2010 is back in stock. Our Highest Recommendation. I cannot say enough about this wonderful collection. From the same people that put together the book Big John Buscema and Ditko Unleashed, Woodwork is also based on the largest exhibit ever assembled of the artist's work, in Spain. Collectors all over the world were asked to contribute rare original art, so that this is a magnum opus not only of Wood's entire career, but also told as much as possible using the actual original art he created. IDW added a top quality translation of the biographical and tribute pieces, and fine-tuned the artwork and layout and reproduced EVERYTHING in full color. Don't miss this. IDW, 2017...More.

Item Code: WOWRH
Hard Cover - No Dustjacket, 10x13, 344pg, Full Color

POSTERSPY Alternative Movie Poster Collection
Highly Recommended. By Frédéric Claquin and Jack Woodhams. Long before the advent of social networks, the first, and sometimes only, visual contact you may have had with a movie was its poster. To return to this enlightened approach and escape the hard selling marketing campaigns of today's releases, this book pays tribute to the artists who celebrate the era when cinematographic posters made us dream. Contemporary work of 58 different artists from the PosterSpy art community, one of the most influential groups devoted to alternative posters. Nearly 300 posters cover a diverse range of genres and eras, from pop culture favorites like Star Wars and Goonies to the Wes Anderson filmography to horror and sci-fi classics. Schiffer, 2018...More.

Item Code: POSTEH
Hard Cover - No Dustjacket, 9x11, 240pg, Full Color
$34.99 $29.99

More about posters in general, and movie posters in particular, on our website.

Recommended. By Mark P. Witton. Dinosaurs and other prehistoric animals pose vast problems for the artist. How do you go about recreating the anatomy and behavior of a creature we've never seen? How can we restore landscapes long lost to time? And where does the boundary between paleontology—the science of understanding fossils—and artistic license lie? In this outstanding book, Mark Witton shares his detailed paintings and great experience of drawing and painting extinct species. Crowood Press, 2017...More.

Item Code: RECR
Soft Cover, 8x11, 110pg, Full Color
$32.95 $29.95

See the website for more prehistoric art and dinosaurs, including the works of Zdenek Burian.

KALEIDOSCOPE The Art of Illustrative Storytelling
This collects the work of 38 contemporary artists who utilize traditional illustration techniques along with embroidery, paper cutting, carving and collage to create pieces that standout for their low-tech charm. Collected from published works in magazines, posters, books, blogs and personal projects, Kaleidoscope includes interviews with six of the talented and enthusiastic artists, masters of the art of storytelling. Among our favorites here are Ero Lampinen, Junkyard Sam, Helena Perez Garcia and Andrea De Santis. Gingko Press, 2018...More.

Item Code: KALEH
Hard Cover - No Dustjacket, 8x11, 240pg, Full Color

VICTORIAN GIANTS The Birth of Art Photography
Recommended. By Phillip Prodger. The work of Oscar Rejlander (1813–75), Julia Margaret Cameron (1815–79), Lewis Carroll (1832–98) and Lady Clementina Hawarden (1822–65) embodies the very best of photography from the Victorian era. These giants of 19th-century photography experimented with new approaches to picture-making and shaped attitudes toward photography that have informed artistic practice ever since. Discover the images that made the case for the photograph as a work of art in this beautiful book. National Portrait Gallery, 2018...More.

Item Code: VICGH
Hard Cover - No Dustjacket, 9x10, 240pg, Partial Color

See more vintage photography on the website.

ABC An Alphabet Written & Pictured by Mrs. Arthur Gaskin
Highly Recommended. Authentic to the period, a lovely silkscreened green cloth cover with high-quality paper. This is both typical and atypical 1890s Victorian design. A child's ABC primer originally published in London in 1895 by Elkin Mathews and in Chicago by A. C. McClurg & Co. It was the first book by the Arts and Crafts artist and designer Georgie Gaskin (1866–1934), celebrated for the jewelry she produced with her husband Arthur Gaskin, one of the very important names in the early Arts and Crafts movement. Exquisitely detailed and charming woodcut illustrations and rhymes by Gaskin accompany each letter of the alphabet. Art Books Publishing, 2018...More.

Item Code: ABCH
Hard Cover - No Dustjacket, 5x8, 64pg, b&w

STEAMPUNK Fantasy Art, Fiction, Fashion, and the Movies
Closeout Price! Back in Stock. Recommended. By Henry Winchester. Foreword by G. D. Falksen. Romance of the past meets the technology of the future. Steampunk is an exciting mix of adventure and sci-fi in a world full of cogs and rivets, goggles and here, an emphasis on lovely ladies in leather and corsets. Influenced by the worlds created by H.G. Wells and Jules Verne, this handsomely illustrated volume displays steampunk's contributions to fashion, art, movies, literature and even music. Very well illustrated with good full page artwork as well as scenes from films including Hugo, League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Golden Compass, Stardust, A Trip to the Moon, Hellboy, Van Helsing, Sherlock Holmes, and even Howl's Moving Castle. Flame Tree, 2014. Out of Print....More.

Item Code: STEPH
Hard Cover, 8x9, 128pg, Full Color
$15.95 $10.95

See our website for more Steampunk themes.


Pulp Fiction

AVENGERS OF THE MOON A Captain Future Novel
By Allen Steele. An old-fashioned, SF pulp adventure with a modern sensibility. The author of Arkwright reprises the popular Edmond Hamilton series from the 1940s pulps. Curt Newton has spent his life hidden from humankind, raised by a robot, an android, and the disembodied brain of a renowned scientist. Curt's innate curiosity and nose for trouble inadvertently lead him into a plot to destabilize the Solar Coalition and assassinate the president. To uncover the evil mastermind--Curt must become Captain Future. TOR, 2018...More.

Item Code: AVENM
Soft Cover, 6x9, 300pg


Artist Edition

By Walter Simonson, Roger McKenzie, Steven Grant et al. This offers you an inside look at the master draftsman's work on the Battlestar Galactica comic book series published by Marvel Comics from 1979 to 1981. Four complete issues: #16, 19, 20, 22 and 23, from cover to last page. The adventures of brash pilots Apollo and Starbuck were never so epic as they were under Simonson's skillful hand. Scanned in high-resolution color and printed at original size, the Battlestar Galactica Art Edition preserves every detail of the artist's meticulous skill and hard work. Dynamite, 2017...More.

Item Code: WSBAEH
Hard Cover - No Dustjacket, 104pg, Full Color

This is also available signed ($250) and signed with a small drawing ($400). Full details on our website, along with more Simonson collections.

See all Artist Editions on our website. Search by price and you'll find any that are on sale will come up first.



MODERN GOTHIC The Photographic Art of Jamie Mahon
By Jamie Mahon. Welcome to the fantasy-made-flesh that is Jamie Mahon's imagination. Weaving together sublime locations, superb photography, and striking models, this award-winning photographer has created true artwork of the alternative subculture. He and a group of extraordinary creators have labored to produce images of beautiful women, expertly made up and professionally styled in fantastic surroundings. Whether it's the ethereal otherworldliness of his Gothic heroines and villainesses, the provocative postures of his fetish performers, or the adrenalin-charged action of his fantasy characters, each image leaps from the page to shock and awe you. Mahon's imagination is realized with such depth, passion, and color as to be an entire reality of its own. So come join us in this wicked world of sinful style. Schiffer, 2018...More.

Item Code: MODGH
Hard Cover - No Dustjacket, 7x10, 176pg, Full Color
$34.99 $29.99

We have more on Gothic themes (as well as The Suicide Girls, who have their own Goth contingent), on our website.

Back in stock. Recommended. By Robert Alvarado. ‘80s and ‘90s pop culture, homages to Alberto Vargas and other classic pinup illustrators, and contemporary fashions and fetishes are all inspiration for an exciting collection of modern pin-ups. With tributes to Baywatch, Rambo, Star Wars, Jessica Rabbit, this collection of over-the-top Americana also features standouts from Alvarado's Redneck Pin-up series; provocatively posed pirates; leather jacket-wearing blondes; classy big-haired chicks with antique cars; a dynamite-wielding cowgirl; polo-playing preppies. No full nudity. Schiffer, 2016. Mature Readers...More.

Item Code: ALVAGH
Hard Cover, 9x12, 160pg, Full Color
$34.99 $29.99

See the more adult Alvarado's Pin-Ups below in Mature Readers, and see our site for his latest collection, new a few weeks ago, Cosplay Pin-Ups. And don't miss the adult title Undressing The Art of Playing Dress Up [UNDRH. $50, your price $42.50].

Recommended. 96 illustrations by the best artists in the business depicting Zenescope's heroes and villains cosplaying various pop culture icons. Cosplay of course is the art of dressing in costume at conventions. In this case, it's drawings instead of photos, with the girls as idealized as you can get. Curves everywhere. Artist Jaime Tyndall is one of the standouts here, with quite a few highly detailed pieces. But all the Zenescope artists are represented with fine portraits of smiling, costumed ladies striking their best pose for the viewer. Zenescope, 2017. Mature Readers...More.

Item Code: ARTCOH
Hard Cover - No Dustjacket, 9x12, 96pg, Full Color
$34.95 $29.95


Gerber's Photo-Journal Guide to Comic Books

Warehouse find, 1990. Volumes 1 & 2. Our Highest Recommendation. By Ernst W. Gerber. Published in 1990, Ernst and Mary Gerber's Photo-Journal Guide to Comic Books is still one of the most comprehensive and exhaustive forays into the history and art of comic books. Featuring over 20,000 cover images across two oversized volumes, The Photo-Journals document comic books published during the Golden Age (1938-45) and into the dawn of the Silver Age (mid-1950s), reproducing each cover in full-color, photographed from the best possible copies of each issue available. In addition, each series listing features supplemental information noting publication year, creators, scarcity guide, and more. No comic collector's reference library is complete without these massive, informative tomes. Gerber, 1990. Out of Print....More.

Item Code: PJGCHP
Hard Cover, 10x14, 856pg, Full Color

Volume 1 has gone out of print. We have just two of these sets. We also have a few individual copies of Volume 2 for $50, but we don't intend to restock these once they sell out.

Warehouse find, 1991. Volumes 3 & 4. By Ernst W. Gerber. What the first Photo-Journal volumes did for the classic comics of the Golden and Silver Ages, these beautiful hardcovers do for Marvel Comics, reproducing over 7,700 covers from the dawn of the Marvel Age to 1986! Here are the classic runs of fan-favorite and forgotten titles — reproducing each cover in full-color, photographed from the best possible copies of each issue available. Gerber, 1991. . Note: The following conditions may apply to the jacket: scuffed, slightly worn/torn, wrinkled laminate, an uncut page. Otherwise, book & interior as new....More.

Item Code: PJGMCHP
Hard Cover, 10x14, 506pg, Full Color
$65.00 $45.00

We found out this second set was still in print, so we brought in several sets. But we were disappointed to find that the laminate on the dust jackets on all copies is wrinkled. So we are discounting these by $20; if they prove popular and quickly sell out, we'll bring more in but they will have to be full retail of $65. Act now....

Also just added to our Rare and Out of Print Books is a Deluxe 1&2 ($425, signed by Gerber, limited to 900) and 3 & 4 ($250, signed by Stan Lee, limited to 2500). These are leatherbound, slipcased and numbered. We have just one of each set.


Bargain Books

These books are low in stock, and may have already been marked down once. I've marked them down even further just for this listing, to clear them out to make way for new items. First come, first served.

We will be sending out a Spring Sale later in May, but you can get a sneek peek by clicking here. To get on our list for email Specials, click here.

BEFORE WATCHMEN Minutemen and Silk Spectre [BEFWH. $29.99 $14.99].

CRIME DOES NOT PAY ARCHIVES Volume 4 [CRD04H. $49.99 $29.99].

FLASH A Celebration of 75 Years [FL75H. $39.99 $24.99].

THE GIRL WHO PLAYED WITH FIRE Volume 1 [GIP01H. $29.99 $14.99].

HELLBOY AND THE BPRD 1953 [HE1953. $19.99 $11.99].

JEFFREY JONES A Life in Art [JJLH. $49.99 $35.00].


MORE SHIBARI YOU CAN USE Passionate Rope Bondage And Intimate Connection [SHIBM. $24.95 $14.95].

SIN CITY Playing Cards [SIC. $5.00 $2.99].

SIEGFRIED Volume 2 [SIE02H. $24.95 $9.95].

You can see all of our discounted items on the website, under Closeouts at the end of each category (such as Artists and Illustration, Comics Related, etc).


Rare & Out of Print

A beautiful copy of One Hundred Books Famous in Children's Literature, and a bargain priced softcover copy of J W Waterhouse.

A collection of classic 1930's strips in Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse in Color, and two copies of The Secret Origins of Super DC Heroes.

We have a few new listings of Marvel Masterworks and DC Archives, with more volumes coming soon.

All  |  New Arrivals   |  Artists & Illustration  |  Fantasy & Sci-Fi  |  Illustrated Fiction

Comic Book Archives  |  Comic Strip & Cartoon   |  Comic Artists  |  Pin-Up  |  Erotic Art

Click here to add yourself to our Rare & Out of Print mailing list.


Mature Readers

Existence Within the Mechanism is a very offbeat collection of erotic photography. Nude women with body parts of mechanization, like what we find in Westworld or in Sorayama artwork, plus some more kinky themes including bondage. It comes in a regular and a signed hardcover edition, from Baby Tattoo.

Back in stock is Alvarado's Pin-Up Nudes, as mentioned above with his American Pin-Up book.

And we have two new full length adult films, one that runs a full three hours for parts 1 and 2. They are Flesh and Laces, and Little Showoffs.

Nude Photography  |  Erotic Art   |  Erotic Films: DVDs  |  Adult Graphic Novels  |  All Pin-Up & Adult

Click here to add yourself to our Adult's Only mailing list.


News and Notes



Carthago by Christophe Bec. Art by Eric Henninot Milan Jovanovic.

I really enjoyed this. It takes six French graphic albums and puts them all together in one massive softcover, for a very reasonable price. It's beautifully drawn and it's an intriguing story, told over thousands of years but all coming to fruition today. The prehistoric ancestor of the Great White Shark has made it to the modern day, along with several other prehistoric denizens of the deep. But that is just the beginning of this complex, very well characterized story.

I spent several nights reading really does give you a lot...and was regretting coming to the end, putting to rest my enjoyment of several of the fine characters here: an oceanic woman scientist who's also the mother of a very, very different young girl; a seemingly mercenary ex-navy pilot who's selflessly helping both the good guys and, apparently, the bad guys. So I was especially pleased to find there is both a prequel of shorter stories, and coming in late 2019, another collection that carries on with the story that seemingly wrapped up in this volume. We'll be bringing in copies of both.

Downward to the Earth by Robert Silverberg, adapted by Philippe Thirault. Art by Laura Zuccheri.

Silverberg is one of the top names in science fiction, with countless awards, Hugos, Nebulas, etc. Not since the 1980s DC graphic novels have I seen a Silverberg story adapted to comics. And this is a very good, very unusual one. Nearly impossible to's about earth colonizing a distant planet with two species that we exploit, but know little about. Two men are destined to learn much more, one for selfish purposes, the other far more altruistic but still naïve. This also has some fine art, adult themes, and it sure makes me think of the metaphysical kind of science fiction that Philip K. Dick is known for. Take a look.


Bill Stout's annual 50 Convention Sketches

Sales have slowed on the older issues of these, so we are going to let go of Volumes 9-18. Act now if you want any of these. We will continue to handle volumes 19 and up, Fantastic Women, Willis O'Brien Tributes, Real Women, Monsters, and World of Oz. All of these are signed and limited editions. They're pretty well exclusively available from just Bill and from us.


San Diego Comic-Con – No More

After 48 consecutive years of exhibiting at Comic-Con, I am not going to set up this year. I'll be there walking the floor, looking for new sketchbooks and other products, catching up with publishers, seeing friends, and, well, scouting for Golden Age comics as I always find time to do. But after long and hard debate, we here (LaDonna, Anne and our usual assistants) decided we had enough of the complicated and labor-intensive logistics of setting up there.

I'm proud that we had as many as eleven booths up until 2008, ten of new products and one with out of print material. But since that disastrous year, when sales dropped by 40%, we've been downsizing in an effort to still make it work. But we kept seeing diminishing rewards, not a loss per se, but really very little in the end, after the enormous expenses involved, to compensate for the time and energy it takes to do the show. Seven full days on the road, 13-hour days at the show, plus all it entails getting material and ourselves prepared and down there.

As you may know, I'm not the only one who's bowed out of the show, as big and special as it is. The folks in charge there have always treated me very well, aside from occasional mishaps--it's nothing against the show itself. The attendees these days are, in general, not our customers or they are not looking for books. Many former customers can't get tickets or have chosen to stop coming. I enjoy far more the smaller comic book and rare book shows and will continue to do those. I have an Inkpot Award from Comic-Con, which gives me a free lifetime ticket. I'll just be walking around enjoying myself for the first time ever, with no booth to look after.



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