Highlighting some great small press comics criticism being published, as well as other random things that have caught my eye over the past week.
* Robin Enrico reviews SOMNAMBULANCE by Fiona Smyth, writing "Fascinating historically, vital thematically, gripping artistically, on all levels is a necessary and deeply rewarding read."
* Scott Cederlund on BERLIN by Jason Lutes, noting "His [Lutes] clean line and economical choices almost appear plain on the surface as Lutes doesn’t want to call attention to his style or storytelling. But when you get past that simplicity of the image, you can watch how he builds his sequences and uses the comic page to tell this story in ways that no other artistic medium could."
* Caitlin Rosberg looks at Tillie Walden's ON A SUNBEAM, writing "maturity in this world is measured by emotional competence and understanding consent and respect, which is a powerful message to act as the underpinning for an epic love story."
* Rob Clough on Summer Pierre's ALL THE SAD SONGS which "emphasizes that the experience of art, and music in particular, is an essential part of what it means to be human. Be it listening for that song that hears you or performing music as an expression of living in that joy, music has powerful, positive effects on us. What Pierre points out is that these effects are not the same thing as therapy, no matter how much we channel our emotions into it."
* Sarah Boslaugh on THE MENTAL LOAD: A FEMINIST COMIC by French cartoonist Emma, a book collection of 12 of her comics which cover "a wide variety of issues, from her experience of childbearing to the deaths of nonwhite French men in police custody to the very nature of capitalism."
* Ryan Carey reviews A LONE DEER AT THE END OF THE WORLD by D. Bradford Gambles, calling it "deeply moving, deeply stirring, deeply contemplative stuff."
* John Seven looks at BASTARD by Belgian cartoonist Max de Radigues wherein "the crime element, though obviously a focal point of the plot, is also in some ways an aside, a device that brings the main characters into contact with people who may or may not be capable of changing their lives, but will almost certainly add to the context and meaning behind the actions of the two characters."
* Tom Spurgeon has this quick review of FRONTIER #17 by Lauren Weinstein, "one of the two or three best comics [he's] read this year."
* Kevin Bramer draws your attention to Pat Aulisio's GHOSTED and you should be thankful for that?
* Tegan O'Neil on BALD KNOBBER by Robert Sergel, writing "The sense of rigid claustrophobia emanating from shabby circumstances saturated with ambient violence seems very much of the moment..."
* Simon Moreton has announced that he has a new zine, LITTLE LEAGUES #1, available for sale. "This is the sister zine to 'Minor Leagues', where smaller stories, little experiments, weird stuff, or things that just don't quite fit in 'Minor Leagues' can find a home. This one is a story told in prose, comics and photos about being in Japan, making chutney, and experiencing Autumn."
* Sara Jewell has this great interview with SHIVANA SOOKDEO over on The Beat.
* Alex Dueben interviews L. NICHOLS about Flocks, "Beethoven, engineering and religion"
* Hillary Brown interviews JASON LUTES about his epic Berlin.
* Sophie Yanow is serializing her new comic THE CONTRADICTIONS, updating daily, which is something you should be not only checking out daily, but celebrating hourly.
* There's a Margot Ferrick comic up on Vice this week called MY DAY that you should go read right now.
* Popula has a Ron Rege', Jr. comic up called THINKING OF DREAMING that you should go read right now.
* Showcasing the talent and work of BME Artists and Writers, the MISSING PANELS ZINE collects 5 comics about experiences accessing healthcare in the UK. There's an event where you can come meet the artists, all of whom explore the racial or cultural barriers in the NHS in their work on November 10th, 2018 at 6.30pm at The Attenborough Arts Centre
* Each year, in recognition of the self-publishing and DIY roots of independent comics, The Massachusetts Independent Comics Expo (MICE) celebrates the hard work and talents of our exhibitors with MICE MINI-GRANTS in order to complete or enhance the printing of their work. This is going to serve as my shopping list for the convention. Hope to see some of you there!
* Alex Hoffman writes about his experience at this year's CARTOON CROSSROADS COLUMBUS (CXC).