Fantagraphics March Newsletter!

Springing into March with three exciting new releases and some extremely cool virtual events! But first, the news:

March New Releases:

Book cover image for The Thud graphic novel by Mikael Ross
The Thud by Mikael Ross

When Noel’s mother has a stroke, his world is turned upside down. Especially when a man comes, who tells Noel that he can’t stay in the only home he’s ever known. He has to move from his apartment and his city to some kind of care facility, in a town he’s never heard of. For the first time, Noel is on his own. Who can he trust? Who can he love? Told from Noel’s perspective with humor and empathy, The Thud offers a rare window into the life of a boy living with developmental disabilities. A Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection.

An excerpt from The Thud showing Noel running after his mother into the emergency room

Book cover image for I Never Promised You A Rose Garden by Mannie Murphy
I Never Promised You A Rose Garden by Mannie Murphy

Mannie Murphy is a gender queer Portland native. This work of graphic nonfiction, told in the style of an illustrated diary, begins as an affectionate reminiscence of the author’s 1990s teenage infatuation with the late actor River Phoenix but morphs into a remarkable, sprawling account of the city of Portland and state of Oregon’s dark history of white nationalism. Murphy details the relationship between white supremacist Tom Metzger and the “Rose City” street kids like Ken Death that infiltrated Van Sant’s films, and brilliantly weaves 1990s alternative culture, from Kurt Cobain and William Burroughs to Keanu Reeves and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, with two centuries of the Pacific Northwest’s shameful history as a hotbed for white nationalism. from the Whitman massacre in 1847 and the Ku Klux Klan’s role in Portland’s city planning in the early 1900s to the brutal treatment of Black people displaced in the 1948 Vanport flood and through the 2014 armed standoff with Cliven Bundy’s cattle ranch.

An excerpt from I Never Promised You A Rose Garden showing Keanu Reeves and River Phoenix together in bed in a scene from My Private Idaho

Book cover image for Red Rock Baby Candy by Shira Spector
Red Rock Baby Candy by Shira Spector

Shira Spector literally paints a vivid portrait of the most eventful 10 years of her life, encompassing her tenacious struggle to get pregnant, the emotional turmoil of her father’s cancer diagnosis and eventual death, and her recollections of past relationships with her parents and her partner. Set in a kaleidoscope of Montreal and Toronto, Red Rock Baby Candy unfolds as one of the most formally inventive comics in the history of the medium. It begins in subtle, tonal shades of black ink, introduces color slowly over the next 50 pages until it explodes into a glorious full color palette. The irreverent characters begin to bloom and to live life fully, resurrecting the dead in order to map the geography among infertility, sexuality, choice, and mortality. The drawing is visceral, symbolic, and naturalistic. The visual storytelling eschews traditional comics panels in favor of a series of unique page compositions that convey both a stream of consciousness and the tactile reality of life, both the subjective impressions of the author at each moment of her life and the objective series of events that shape her narrative.

An excerpt from Red Rock Baby Candy showing a combined interior and exterior illustration of a woman nursing a child

March Events:

  • Thursday, March 4th: Cathy Malkasian (NoBody Likes You, Greta Grump) All-ages Live Drawing Event – ParentMap
  • Sunday, March 14th: Mort Gerberg (Mort Gerberg on the Scene) Online Lecture on NYC Cartooning – Jewish Association Serving the Aging
  • Thursday, March 18th: Shira Spector (Red Rock Baby Candy) with Fiona Smyth – The Beguiling
  • Tuesday, March 23rd: Mannie Murphy (I Never Promised You A Rose Garden) with Stephen R. Bissette – Floating World Comics
  • Friday, March 26th: Shira Spector (Red Rock Baby Candy) with Phoebe Gloeckner – Green Apple Books
  • Friday, April 2nd: Shira Spector (Red Rock Baby Candy) with Whit Taylor – Bluestockings
A promotional banner reading Red Rock Baby Candy Virtual Book launch, Shira Spector with Phoebe Gloeckner, March 26, 6pm PST at Green Apple Books

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