Fantagraphics goes to SPX 2018!

Fall is in the air, and you know what that means! We’re heading to Bethesda, Maryland for this year’s Small Press Expo, where we’ll be welcoming some prestigious special guests, launching some dope debut books, and taking part in some enlightening programming. Come find us at Booth W50!

SPX 2018 Special Guests:

Ellen Forney, Rock Steady: Brilliant Advice from My Bipolar Life

Rock Steady: Brilliant Advice from My Bipolar Life is the eagerly awaited companion book to Forney’s 2012 best-selling graphic memoir, Marbles. Whereas Marbles was a memoir about her bipolar disorder, Rock Steady turns the focus outward, offering a self-help guide of tips, tricks, and tools by someone who has been through it all and come through stronger for it.


Carol Tyler, Fab4 Mania

Critically acclaimed cartoonist Carol Tyler (Soldier’s Heart) recreates the exhilaration and excitement of Beatlemania at its height in 1965, her personal obsession with the Beatles, and the odyssey that leads her to the famous Beatles Chicago concert later that year. The book brims with rich period details, humor, insight, and beautiful drawings capturing the spirit of the time. It is also about the Beatles, of course, as seen through the eyes of a young, giddy teenager and a reflective, adult artist, and the joy the band gave and continues to give.


Liv Strömquist, Fruit of Knowledge: The Vulva Vs. The Patriarchy

In this feminist graphic novel, Swedish cartoonist Liv Strömquist shows how men have stigmatized women’s bodies, denied their sexuality, created a dubious gender binary, and much more. Her biting, informed commentary explores history and taboos from the darkest chapters (the Salem witch trials) to the lightest (when menstrual blood was used as a love potion) and reveals some uncomfortable truths about how far we haven’t come.


Max de Radigues, Bastard

After taking part in a historic heist — 52 simultaneous robberies at the same time, in the same city — May and Eugene are now on the run from the law, some double-crossed former accomplices, and their violent past. In a surprising twist, these criminals are the unlikely pairing of a young mother and her preteen son. Thus begins the intense, yet touching, Bastard, Max de Radiguès’s Fantagraphics debut.


Dash Shaw, Bottomless Belly Button (New Printing)

Reprinted by popular demand! Bottomless Belly Button is a comedy-drama that follows the dysfunctional adventures of the Loony Family. After 40-some years of marriage, Maggie and David Loony shock their children with their announcement of a planned divorce. Visually, Shaw employs a leisurely storytelling pace that allows room for exploring the interconnecting relationships among the characters and plays to his strength as a cartoonist — small gestural details and nuanced expressions that bring the characters to vivid and intimate life.


Debut Books

I Am Young by M. Dean

This series of character-driven, musically minded stories by cartoonist M. Dean is as graphically sophisticated as it is emotionally acute. Tied together by one central narrative about two teenagers who meet and fall in love after a Beatles concert in 1964, I Am Young explores how relationships evolve — both interpersonally as well as our individual and collective relationships with the culture around us. A romance that begins as emphatically as Beatlemania is, like the band that brought them together, on the rocks by the end of the decade, and although the ensuing years may put distance between the two, their shared experience that one night in 1964 endures.


Now #4 by Various Artists

Debuting in 2017 to widespread acclaim and commercial success, this fourth issue of Now continues the mission already established: to present over 100 pages of all new short comics fiction by a host of established and up-and-coming talent from around the globe. This issue is scheduled to include: Trenton Doyle Hancock (who contributes this issue’s cover), J.C. Menu, Roman Muradov, María Medem, Walt Holcombe, Rebecca Kirby, Noah Van Sciver, Jesse Reklaw, Matthias Lehmann, Walker Tate, Nick Thorburn, and many other surprises. With an incredibly diverse line-up and unbelievable price point, find out why Now is the most talked-about comics anthology in years.


Petey & Pussy: Puppy Love by John Kerschbaum

John Kerschbaum’s Petey and Pussy, the stars of the cult classic 2008 book by the same name, return, and so does their unique brand of animal neuroses. Imagine a Secret Life of Pets where the animals hang out in dive bars. These stories all intertwine at an oddly surreal breakneck pace, making Kerschbaum’s tales of balding, kvetching domestic animals read like the best slapstick cartoons, though decidedly adult, as if Larry David wrote an R-rated Tom and Jerry for Adult Swim.




Zahhak: The Legend of the Serpent King by Hamid Rahmanian , Simon Arizpe

In this stunningly produced and ingeniously crafted pop-up book, the story of Zahhak the Serpent King springs to life. The tale begins as the greedy Prince Zahhak is swayed by the devil to murder his father and usurp the thrown. For his wicked deed, the villainous King is cursed with monstrous snakes that grow from his shoulders and feed upon the brains of young men. Thus commences his brutal rule over the seven realms of Persia. But one night, the King has an ominous dream that strikes fear into his heart. His soothsayer soon foretells that a young Persian man will rise up against the King and end his reign with a mighty blow from a golden mace. Who is this mysterious young man, and is he powerful enough to conquer the evil Zahhak and his ravenous snakes to bring peace to Persia? With each turn of the page, readers enter the mythical world of Zahhak: The Legend of the Serpent King.

The Complete Peanuts 1967-1970 (Vols. 9 & 10) Paperback Gift Box Set by Charles Schulz

Fantagraphics Books is proud to present the most ambitious publishing project in the history of the American comic strip: the complete reprinting of Charles M. Schulz’s classic, Peanuts. Considered to be one of the most popular comic strips in the history of the world, Peanuts is, for the first time, collected in its entirety.

Each volume is gorgeously designed by the award-winning cartoonist Seth (It’s a Good Life If You Don’t Weaken) and features impeccable production values; every single strip from Charles M. Schulz’s 50-year American classic is reproduced better than ever before. Books in the series runs approximately 320 pages in a 8″ x 6 1/2″ hardcover format, presenting two years of strips along with supplementary material. The series presents the entire run in chronological order, dailies and Sundays. Available this season is our annual boxed set, featuring The Complete Peanuts softcover volumes 9 and 10.


Panels and Programming

White Flint Auditorium — Saturday, September 15 — 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Our relationship with our parents is the first important one in our lives. However, it can often take years to process those relationships, with the passage of time adding a different perspective. Moderator Rob Clough will discuss issues related to death, trauma, and the ways in which the narrative we create as children affects our adult lives with panelists Carol Tyler (Soldier’s Heart), David Small (Stitches), J.P. Trostle (Nautilus) and Rina Ayuyang (Blame This On The Boogie) and Mike Dawson (Freddie And Me).

White Flint Auditorium — Sunday, September 15 — 2:30 pm – 3:00 pm

The adage “write what you know” has led to many beautiful and inspiring autobiographies; but when writing and/or drawing the life of another, you’re given the chance to step into another’s shoes. Ron Wimberly (Sentences), Hazel Newlevant (If This Be Sin), Max de Radiguès (Weegee) and Jérémie Royer (Audobon) dive into the research, editing, and artistic skills required to get someone else’s life right. Marc Sobel will moderate.

Glen Echo Room — Saturday, September 15 — 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm

Spend an hour with groundbreaking cartoonist Dash Shaw, creator of BodyWorld, Bottomless Belly Button, New School, Doctors, and Cosplayers, as well as the animated film My Entire High School Sinking Into the Sea. Dig into his experience and influences, and pick up tips on storytelling and techniques from a master of the form. All ages.

White Flint Auditorium — Saturday, September 15 — 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm

As mental health is becoming a subject that’s more openly discussed than ever, comics narratives are emerging about personal experiences with mental illness. Moderator Rob Clough will discuss with Lawrence Lindell (Couldn’t Afford Therapy, So I Made This), Ellen Forney (Rock Steady), Keiler Roberts (Chlorine Gardens) and Whit Taylor (Updown Clown) about their own or a family member’s struggles with Bipolar Disorder, the choices they make in writing about it, and how this process affects how they look at it.

Main Foyer — Saturday, September 15 — 4:30 pm – 5:30 pm

Celebrate the release of comics legend Carol Tyler’s new book, Fab4 Mania, by coming out to the main foyer and singing some of the Beatles’ greatest hits with her! There will be a book signing immediately following the event at the Fantagraphics table.

White Flint Auditorium — Saturday, September 15, — 5:30 pm – 6:30 pm

Liv Strömquist’s new book, Fruit of Knowledge, is subtitled “The Vulva vs. the Patriarchy”. Embassy of Sweden’s Cultural Counselor Linda Zachrison will join Liv in a wide-ranging discussion about how her bitingly satirical book details how men have denied, erased and stigmatized women’s bodies and identities throughout history by making topics like menstruation and female genitalia taboo.

White Flint Auditorium — Sunday, September 16 — 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

Our renowned panelists Dash Shaw (New School), Kat Fajardo (Gringa!), Carta Monir (Secure Connect) and Nate Powell (Come Again) have all created beautiful books about the trials and triumphs of youth. Here with moderator Johanna Draper Carlson, they discuss what goes into making a book that’s meant to capture the authenticity of an era you only see in hindsight.

White Flint Auditorium — Sunday, September 16 — 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

Our renowned panelists Dash Shaw (New School), Kat Fajardo (Gringa!), Carta Monir (Secure Connect) and Nate Powell (Come Again) have all created beautiful books about the trials and triumphs of youth. Here with moderator Johanna Draper Carlson, they discuss what goes into making a book that’s meant to capture the authenticity of an era you only see in hindsight.

White Oak Room — Sunday, September 16 — 4:30 pm – 5:30 pm

Romance comics have a long and storied history. However, a new generation of queer romance cartoonists is challenging assumptions, investigating & mainstreaming specific subcultures, and playfully subverting the genre’s familiar cliches. Moderator Carta Monir joins panelists Ed Luce (Wuvable Oaf), Hazel Newlevant (Sugartown), Archie Bongiovanni (The Greasebats) and Shauna J. Grant (Princess Love Pon) as they discuss their own unique takes on romance comics.

Click here for the full show schedule!


The Signing Schedule: Booth W-50

Saturday, September 15th
12pm-1pm – John Kerschbaum
1pm-2pm – Joshua Cotter, Max de Radigues
2pm-3pm -M. Dean, Nick Thorburn
3pm-4pm – Ann Telnaes, Liv Stromquist
4pm-5pm – Max de Radigues, Dash Shaw
5pm-6pm – Ellen Forney
5:30pm-6:30pm – Carol Tyler


Sunday, September 16th
12pm-1pm – Joshua Cotter, Liv Stromquist
1pm-2pm – Ann Telnaes, Max de Radigues
2pm-3pm – Dash Shaw, Nick Thorburn
3pm-4pm – Ellen Forney, Carol Tyler
4pm-5pm – M. Dean, Max de Radigues


Hope to see you there!