“The Stringer” – How it all started.

“I have an idea for a new graphic novel (…). Any interest?”

And with these two simple questions, Ted put the poison back in me.

After publishing “The Year of Loving Dangerously” with Ted Rall in 2009, I fell in my usual state of “feeling-void-after-finishing-a-book”. “YOLD” had been a colossal effort -although a rewarding one- in terms of searching references and creating an appropriate graphic atmosphere. Being myself a maniac of documentation and historical coherence in the silliest details – a car seen in such and such a scene, a magazine cover, the inside of a subway car of NYC in 1984… – and with the level of detail with which Ted elaborates his scripts, the work was simply exhausting.

This “I have lost all my energies and skills” lasts usually for some months for me. But in this case, aggravated by personal trouble, it took around three years until, in February 2013, I received a message from Ted that rang a bell in my brain.

“I have an idea for a new graphic novel.

The book is about a washed up reporter/war correspondent who is largely out of work because newspapers and magazines are all going under and slashing their budgets and closing their foreign bureaus. (…) A wicked take on the state of the media, the collapse of the economy, the Internet, the nature of warfare, etc.

Any interest?”

Of course I was interested!!! So I climbed aboard, never imagining that I was embarking on a 6-year-152-pages-task.

First discussions were about what style would match better the story. I am always experimenting with new things, changes of style, attempts at evolution. At that time I was trying out a style that was not as realistic as “The Year of Loving Dangerously”…

Mmmm… Not this time, sorry!

… nor as dark as “Bluesman”.

No-no…

I was looking for something more schematic, that synthesised reality in order to, without losing realism, give it a more “cartoonish” touch that would fit better with Ted’s satirical-cynical writing.

Much better!

Ok, so we have the style… What about the main character? How should Mark look? He was a guy in his late 40s/early 50s, a little rattled by life but still in the mood, a bit cynical but still confident in himself and his ability. Someone just like Robert Redford in “All the President’s Men” or maybe Nick Nolte in “Under Fire”.


But there was something that didn’t fit the “schematic” style I was looking for. Also, it was necessary to reflect the passage of time – decades – as we told Mark’s story. An obvious recourse would be to make the protagonist’s hair greyer, so he needed to be dark-haired.

So I switched to a most modern look, dark hair and gray temples. Got it!

Discussing with Ted a cast if “The Stringer” were a movie, I see Ben Affleck as Mark. Ted’s betting more on George Clooney, who’s not bad either.

Anyway, Ben or George: if you’re reading this, know that we’re counting on you for the role of a lifetime 🙂

Thank you for reading. More to come on the creative process of “The Stringer” in the next days.

NBM April 2021 Releases

Here are upcoming titles, now being solicited in comic stores through Diamond Previews for an April 2021 release.

 

NEW

THE STRINGER
By Ted Rall and Pablo Callejo

Suffering from budget cuts, layoffs and a growing suspicion that his search for the truth has become obsolete, veteran war correspondent Mark Scribner is about to throw in the towel on journalism when he discovers that his hard-earned knowledge can save his career and make him wealthy and famous. All he has to do is pivot to social media and -with a few cynical twists- abandon everything he cares about most.

A paean to when fact-based journalism mattered, The Stringer, set at an important turning point a few years ago, is a globe-trotting action-packed timely statement about how a society without a vibrant independent culture of reporting can degenerate into chaos and a warning of the dangers of sophisticated new technologies that enable the manufacture and modification of ‘truths’ with no basis in fact.

8 ½ x 11, 152pp, full color HC, $24.99; ISBN 978168112272452499; DIAMOND CODE: FEB21 1422
Pub Date: April 14th, 2021

PREVIEWS

 

AVAILABLE AGAIN

THE YEAR OF LIVING DANGEROUSLY
By Ted Rall and Pablo Callejo


It’s New York City in the 1980s and Ted Rall is in college. Everything is fine before his pranks, lack of focus and restlessness get him expelled. Unable to find a job and rejected by his parents, he considers suicide.

By happenstance he finds comfort in the arms of many women as he bed-hops around the five boroughs. It’s better than homelessness, but the psychic toll of selling himself and his affection was higher than he imagined.

Both acidly funny and brutally honest, Rall, a cartoonist both beloved and reviled for his edgy politics, pours out his guts in this remembrance of this most difficult chapter in his life. Revised paperback edition.

8 ½ x 11″, 128pp, full color TPB., $15.99; ISBN 978168112215151599; DIAMOND CODE: FEB211423

PREVIEWS

 

2024
By Ted Rall

Move forward two decades. See the world as the giant media moguls and software companies have become our new big brothers. They want the best for us. They know what’s best for us. And maybe we don’t always know so well.

Ted ‘I-need-more-enemies’ Rall updates 1984 in a scathing look at where we could be headed; and this is all Rall, no holes barred, no prisoners. His best and most chillingly funny work yet!

6×9, 96 pp., B&W, jacketed hardcover: $16.95; ISBN 156163279151695; DIAMOND CODE: FEB211424

 

SILK ROAD TO RUIN
By
Ted Rall

Part graphic novel travelog, part tongue-in-cheek travel guide, here are the adventures of caustic cartoonist Rall in the wild and wooly central Asian countries, a powder keg sitting on tomorrow’s oil…

Combines articles with comics chapters relating his experiences retracing the old legendary Silk Road starting with the sublime history of China and ending in the absurdity of the petty dictatorships of the “The ‘Stans” where Rall had the temerity -or was it blustery stupidity?- to go back, including once with a group of listeners to his radio show, on a dare.

It’s exotic adventure, satire and a fun way to find out more about a part of the world that looms in importance with its immense reserves of oil…

6×9, 304pp., B&W TPB, US $19.99; ISBN 978156163885751999; DIAMOND CODE: FEB21 1425

PREVIEWS

 

TO AFGHANISTAN AND BACK
By
Ted Rall

The World’s first “Instant Graphic Novel”! When U.S. bombs started raining on the Taliban, Rall didn’t just watch it on TV–he jumped on a plane straight to the war zone to get the real story for himself. But the only cartoonist to go to Afghanistan got more than he bargained for, way more than his previous gut-wrenching trip deep up the legendary Silk Road.

Within days of arriving, armed men were hunting down journalists to murder and rob them. Waving funnies didn’t help. From the gruesome spectacle of a Taliban prisoner blowing himself up with grenades to the hilarious image of mujahideen lining up for shaves and DVD porn a day after joining the Northern Alliance, you can count on Rall for a decidedly different take on this gritty war.

To Afghanistan and Back, features as its centerpiece a 50-page graphic novel travelogue of his experience as a cartoonist and war correspondent. It also includes Rall’s articles, cartoons and photos as filed from the front for the Village Voice and syndicated throughout America.

6×9, 112pp., B & W clothbound, US $15.95; ISBN 978156163325851595; DIAMOND CODE: FEB211426

PREVIEWS

 

BOB MARLEY IN COMICS
By Gaet’s and Sophie Blitman

In the middle of a depressing youth in a ghetto of Kingston, Jamaica, Robert Nesta Marley sees only one way out: music. And that music will be what Jamaica made of rock and pop locally that had hardly been heard anywhere else: reggae!

It is Marley who brings the unmistakable beat of reggae to the entire world. From small stages in Jamaica, his partners of the Wailers accompany him all the way to the most fabulous world tours and adulation. Beyond a rocketing musical career, the most famous rasta wants to shake things up and proclaim all over his humanitarian and egalitarian values.

The next volume in the sellout series featuring the Beatles and the Rolling Stones.

7 ½ x10,176pp.,  full color HC: US $27.99: ISBN: 9781681122449652799; DIAMOND CODE: FEB211427

PREVIEWS

 

TAMBA, CHILD SOLDIER
By Marion Achard and Yan Degruel

“My name is Tamba Cisso. When I was eight years old, I lived in the village with my father, my mother and my sister. I went to school and had learned to read. I knew there was war in my country, but I didn’t know that children could wage it.”

Providing a testimonial to one of the most heart-wrenching and chilling developments in modern warfare, this graphic novel chronicles the realities of hundreds of thousands across the world, kidnapped and forced to commit atrocities.

8.5  x11”, 112pp., full color HC, $24.99 US/ $32.50 CAN; ISBN: 9781681122366524499; DIAMOND CODE: FEB211429

PREVIEWS

 

THE LOUVRE COLLECTION: THE RED MOTHER WITH CHILD
By Christian Lax

In Mali in Africa, a red Mother with Child, a 14th century African sculpture, is saved from the destructive madness of Islamists by Alou, a young honey hunter. In the company of other migrants, sisters and brothers of misfortune, Alou goes all out to reach Europe. His goal and his obsession: entrust the precious statuette to the Louvre Museum!

An epic adventure, touching upon the burning worldwide issue of refugees and immigration, in the ever-expanding Louvre collection commissioning graphic novels from leading world artists to spin tales around the famous museum.

9×12, 144pp, full color HC, $27.99 US / $36.50 CAN; ISBN: 978168112257152799; DIAMOND CODE: FEB211428

NBM March 2021 Releases

Here are upcoming titles, now being solicited in comic stores through Diamond Previews for a March 2021 release.

NEW

Women Discoverers: Top Women in Science
By Christelle Pecout and Marie Moinard


20 women who made a difference in Science are presented here. From Ada Lovelace (computing) to Marie Curie (Physics and Chemistry) these exceptional women enabled the world to advance in all fields of science including space exploration (Mae Jamison), telecommunications (the actress also genius discoverer Hedy Lamarr) and Biology (Rosalind Franklin).

An inspiration going counter to preconceived notions about women and science, presenting a diverse group from around the world.

8 ½ x 11, 96pp. full color HC, $19.99HC ISBN 978168112270051999; DIAMOND CODE: JAN211441; Publication Date: March 17th, 2021

AVAILABLE AGAIN

Abelard
By Renaud Dillies and Régis Hautière


The charm of Renaud Dillies strikes again: after the mouse of Bubbles and Gondola, here is another dreamer, little chick Abelard. To lure pretty Epily, Abelard sees only one solution: to catch the moon for her!

So off he goes to America, the country which invented flying machines. Armed with his banjo and his proverb-sharing hat, he launches out on the country roads, meets Gypsies, then Gaston, a grumpy bear with whom he will share a good bit of his way…

As opposed to dreamer Abelard, Gaston has his feet firmly planted on the ground. With this funny animal road-movie where the absurd becomes poetry, Régis Hautière and Renaud Dillies offer us another small jewel.

8 ½ x 11, 128pp., full color hardcover, $22.99, HC; ISBN: 978156163701052299; DIAMOND CODE: JAN211442

PREVIEWS

 

Bubbles & Gondola
By Renaud Dillies

On a background of Django Reinhardt, this jewel of poetic fantasy is a fairy tale for all ages with spot on observations about life. Charlie is a mouse who’s trying to write but has a block. Writing is a solitary endeavor. A bird named Solitude comes to visit him to keep him company.

We’re never sure he actually exists but in Charlie’s mind, yet he brings him out into the world, dares him to experience the unknown, unblocking his little existence…

A drama about the blank page for Charlie who so wants to make the world more beautiful with his writing, we are transported into a tender and moving tale with a twinge of lyrical melancholy yet sweet, warm and ultimately elevating.

8.5 x11”, 80pp., full color hardcover, $16.99. HC; ISBN 978156163611251699; DIAMOND CODE: JAN211443

PREVIEWS

 

Dungeon Monstres, vol.5: “My Son the Killer”
By Joann Sfar, Lewis Trondheim, Blutch, Frederic Bezian


In the title story, we meet Marvin the Dragon still a pup with his Mom but make no mistake, both are formidable. Their ferocity catches the eye of the Keeper who is still making his way up the ladder in Antipolis and has many dangerous enemies. He makes them his bodyguards.

Soon enough, crafty little Marvin manages to witness a sinister plot and tries to save the Keeper and the city’s leaders from annihilation. In “Soldiers of Honor,” Gork and Krag are brothers and soldiers of hell. They keep a secret door in the Dungeon.

The door being little used, they get bored, until an old blind man forces Krag, alone on duty that day, to call reinforcements to prevent him from entering. Because he has not fulfilled his mission, Krag is sentenced to be killed by his own brother in the middle of the desert!

6 ½ x 9, 96 pp., TPB., $14.99; ISBN 978156163937351499; DIAMOND CODE: JAN211444

PREVIEWS

 

Dungeon Monstres, Vol. 6 “The Great Animator”
By Lewis Trondheim, Joann Sfar, Stanislas, Nicolas Keramidas


In an automaton themed volume, ‘The Great Animator’ pits the predecessor to the Vaucanson great castle and realm against a huge army of ruthless invaders. The great castle’s army of battle automatons evens the fight but at great cost.

In the second story, ‘The Inventor’s Grimoire’, the Vaucanson grimoire with the secrets of building automatons has disappeared! If it fell in the wrong hands, much harm could come of it.

And indeed, it turns out the greedy Lord Delacour has snatched it with the intention of auctioning it off to the highest bidder!

6 ½ x 9, 96pp., full color TPB, $15.99; ISBN 978156163998451500; DIAMOND CODE: JAN211445

 

Dungeon: Twilight Vol. 4: High Septentrion & The End of Dungeon 
By Johann Sfar, Lewis Trondheim, Alfred, Mazan

The last two stories of Dungeon!

In High Septentrion, there has been a violent eruption on the planet of Terra Amata. It’s a scramble to find breathable air, but the wizened blind, mystical dragon the Dust King (Marvin) thinks that it is perhaps time for him to die heroically. However the feisty young Marvin the Red refuses to give up and plans to find a way out of this mess, including finding a way to actually breathe… Art by Alfred of “Why I Killed Peter.”

And in The End of Dungeon the more the islets of the planet Terra Amata move upward, the less there is of breathable oxygen. While Marvin the Red and Zakutu, daughter of the Grand Khân, attempt to protect the seven objects of Destiny, Herbert and the Dust King are forced to swear allegiance to the Dark Entity in order to gain access to breathable air. All things must come to an end and so it is with the great Dungeon.

6 ½ 9, 96pp., full color TPB, $14.99; ISBN 978156163919951499; DIAMOND CODE: JAN211447

 

Dungeon: Zenith, Vol.3 “Back In Style”
By Boulet, Joann Sfar, Lewis Trondheim


Taking a pause from the Monstres sub-series, the main Zenith mini series is back! This time with the art of Boulet but still written by the Sfar/Trondheim duo. Two stories continue the heyday of Dungeon, in the first, Isis is to be married to the Keeper but she wants Herbert!

Besides, the whole affair promises to ruin the Dungeon completely. In the second, besides the continued Keeper financial mishaps, Herbert wishes to make his comeback to his hometown where his name is mud. He disguises himself with a potion that makes him ‘the mask of death’.

Only one problem: if he laughs, he becomes himself again!

6 1/2 x 9, 96pp, full color TPB., $14.99; ISBN 978156163550451499; DIAMOND CODE: JAN21 1448

 

Dungeon: Twilight, Vol 2: Armageddon
By Lewis Trondheim, Joann Sfar, Kerascoet

Marvin, saved at the last minute from certain death in a duel by his young warrior admirer Marvin the Red, simply cannot be let to die like he wishes!

Whatever he loses, he regains in different powers. He’s even become invincible.

It’s to the point where he’d rather exchange body parts to get back his mortality. But then he is led to a discovery that may make continuing to live actually worth it.

6 1/2×9, 96pp., full color TPB., $14.99; ISBN: 978156163477451499; DIAMOND CODE: JAN211446






NBM February 2021 Releases

Here are upcoming titles, now being solicited in comic stores through Diamond Previews for an February 2021 release.

NEW

Michael Jackson In Comics
By Ceka and Various

Well beyond his passing in 2009, Michael Jackson remains one of the most adulated and mysterious stars in the world. Incredible singer, brilliant musician, amazing performer, he was just as talented as he was eccentric, adored as well as reviled with sordid accusations, sadly caught between a stolen childhood and a suffocating star system.

Discover in this biography mixing comics and documentary chapters, how the youngest of the Jackson 5 was propelled to the front of the stage and then onto one of the most extraordinary solo careers in music.

The next volume in the sellout series featuring the Beatles, the Rolling Stones and Bob Marley.

192pp., 7 ½ x10, full color HC, $26.99, ISBN 9781681122281, e-book $16.99; ISBN 9781681122304; DIAMOND CODE: DEC201579


AVAILABLE AGAIN


The Beatles in Comics
By Michels Mabel and Various

Here’s the complete illustrated story of the Beatles from their formation, through the Beatlemania phenom all the way through their breakup.

We see how they evolved along with and amplifying the uproar of the sixties, became politically and socially active and have achieved a lasting impact unparalleled in pop music.

Chapters combine text and comics for complete information presented in a fun way.

7 ½ x 10″, 224pp., full color HC, $29.99; ISBN 978-1-68112-187-1; e-books: $18.99; DIAMOND CODE: DEC201580


Bob Marley in Comics
By Gaet’s & Sophie Blitman
and Various

In the middle of a depressing youth in a ghetto of Kingston, Jamaica, Robert Nesta Marley sees only one way out: music. And that music will be what Jamaica made of rock and pop locally that had hardly been heard anywhere else: reggae!

It is Marley who brings the unmistakable beat of reggae to the entire world. From small stages in Jamaica, his partners of the Wailers accompany him all the way to the most fabulous world tours and adulation.

Beyond a rocketing musical career, the most famous rasta wants to shake things up and proclaim all over his humanitarian and egalitarian values.

176pp., 7 ½ x10, full color HC, $27.99, e-book $16.99; ISBN 9781681122496; DIAMOND CODE: DEC201581


Rolling Stones in Comics
By Ceka and Various

When the Rolling Stones hit the scene in the 60’s, it was to play Rhythm & Blues, nothing more. They are far from imagining that they are not just going to change music but also become the mouthpiece of a changing world. Sticking their tongue out at the establishment with their brilliant music and hard-hitting lyrics, they achieve planetary-wide success.

With Mick Jagger and Keith Richards in the lead, these rebels have become, over fifty years, not just music, but a whole attitude!

Through twenty-one stories in comics accompanied by biographical texts and a rich iconography, this book makes you relive, in a totally new way, the incredible epic of one of the biggest rock bands ever.

192pp., 7×10, full color HC, $26.99, e-books $16.99; ISBN 9781681121987; DIAMOND CODE: DEC201582


NBM Announces Upcoming 2021 Releases

NBM Graphic Novels is proud to announce the release schedule from Winter 2021 through Summer 2021, including brand new music biographies of Michael Jackson by Ceka & Various, Janis Joplin by Nicolas Finet & Christopher.

Other titles include The Stringer by Ted Rall & Pablo Callejo focusing on the life and career crossroads of a veteran war correspondent, and the culinary adventure, The Secrets of Chocolate: A Gourmand’s Trip Through a Top Chef’s Atelier by Franckie Alarcon.

In addition, we’ll have new non-fiction titles including Women Discoverers by Christelle & Marie Moinard focusing on 20 women who made valuable contributions to science and Canciones of Federico Garcia Lorca, focusing on one of Spain’s foremost cultural and literary figures by Tobias Tak.

Check out the complete listing HERE!

And coming later in 2021?  Dungeon Returns!







NBM December 2020 Releases

Here are upcoming titles, now being solicited in comic stores through Diamond Previews for an December 2020 release.

NEW

THE DISNEY BROS.: The Fabulous Story of Walt and Roy
Created by Alex Nikolavitch & Felix Ruiz

After the bankruptcy of his first two companies, the young Walt Disney decides to call on his older brother Roy to start a new business: the Disney Brothers Cartoon Studios.

The combination of their opposing talents, one artistic, the other managerial, will give birth to an entertainment giant despite the difficult nature of Walt. Little by little, Walt will push his brother into the shadows and sink into chronic depression and excessive consumption of alcohol … But all this will not prevent him from producing the greatest masterpieces of animation.

The authors have chosen a cartoon style, worthy of Mickey Mouse comics, to tell a very serious story of creation, money and politics, but also… of family.

7×10, 112pp. full color HC, $19.99, HC ISBN 9781681122663; DIAMOND CODE: OCT201490. Pub Date: December 16th, 2020

PREVIEWS

 

AVAILABLE AGAIN

THE FORBIDDEN HARBOR
Created by Teresa Radice & Stefano Turconi

In the summer of 1807, the Explorer, a ship from Her Majesty’s Navy recovers a young shipwreck off the coast of Siam, Abel, who can only remember his name.

He soon becomes friends with the first officer, acting as a captain because the commander of the ship has apparently absconded with the ship’s treasure. Abel returns to England with the Explorer and finds accommodation at the inn run by the three fugitive captain’s daughters. Well before he can recover his memory, however, he will discover something deeply disturbing about himself, and he will understand the true nature of some of the people who helped him.

A haunting and intense book that digs into the soul of the protagonists as well as the reader, with a generous helping of good ‘ole fashioned salty adventure along with many a shanty sung, and a sprinkling of magic dust. Presented in a handsome old style, worn-looking hardcover, as if taken from a ship captain’s library. An uplifting, enthralling escape.

7 ½ x 10 ½, 320pp., B&W with color sketchbook, old-fashioned hardcover, $29.99; HC ISBN 97816811223285. PREVIEWS CODE: OCT201492.

PREVIEWS

 

THE ROCK & ROLL SET!

Here is a set of 3 tomes on great rock and roll bands! The bestselling comics bios of the Beatles, the Rolling Stones and Bob Marley are collected into one attractively priced banded set.

3 volumes, full color HC US $74.99 HC ISBN 9781681122618. DIAMOND CODE: OCT201494

PREVIEWS

 

PORTUGAL
Created by Cyril Pedrosa

From the author of the acclaimed Equinoxes comes a return to roots that serves as spiritual renewal.

Comics artist Simon Muchat is stuck. Suffering writer’s block, uninspired, vegetating as a school art teacher, he is losing direction and his taste for life, until one day he is invited to appear at a comics convention in Portugal, the country his family came from and which he hadn’t seen since his childhood.

The experience proves cathartic. Even though he is not Portuguese himself and is a foreigner there, so many elements are familiar to him. Meeting its lively citizens, full of the zest for life, his distant yet welcoming family bringing back fond early memories, all prove reinvigorating, the breath of fresh air he so badly needed.

Based on his own experience, Pedrosa narrates this return to his roots in a deeply compelling and warmly human way. This is his bestselling graphic novel with over 100,000 copies sold in France and a winner of many prizes including
Best Graphic Novel at the Angouleme Festival and FNAC Best GN.

9”x12”, 264pp., full color hardcover, $39.99, HC ISBN 978168112147553999. DIAMOND CODE: OCT201493

 

PREVIEWS

EQUINOXES
Created by Cyril Pedrosa

In an equinox, day is as long as night, as if the world found perfect equilibrium between shadow and light, a fleeting equilibrium, similar to the stakes of our human destinies. Segmented into four tableaux for four seasons, unrelated people of all social backgrounds seeking equilibrium cross paths with other solitudes, weaving in and out of one another’s lives- all captivated and tormented by the enigmatic meaning of life. Every season has its visual identity and its individual voice, culminating in summer and, possibly, an answer.

‘Equinoxes’ is a unique ground-breaking work of rare intensity and narrative sensibility by a rising bestselling star of European comics.

9 x 12, 336 pp, Full color Cloth hardcover, US $44.99 HC ISBN 978168112080554499; DIAMOND CODE: OCT201491

PREVIEWS


 

Willie Nelson: A Graphic History Scribe T.J. Kirsch Talks School, Comics, Willie & More On New Podcast

Hello out there in blog land! If you’re reading this, chances are you’re interested in Willie Nelson: A Graphic History from NBM. Chances are also good that you’re maybe interested in the people that worked on the project. Well, today… is your lucky day! T.J. Kirsch ( that’s ME ) was recorded having a wonderful conversation about that project for the Vodka O’Clock Podcast this past week. Amber, the host of VOC, went in depth with T.J ( ME ) about his beginnings in comics, in secondary schooling, his experience as a literary agent, his previous book Pride Of The Decent Man ( NBM ), and more!

Click here and crank up your podcast listening device – whatever that may be – and take the journey. You’ll be enlightened, possibly distracted from doing those dishes, or that commute to that grocery store you love so much.

NBM November 2020 Releases

Here are upcoming titles, now being solicited in comic stores through Diamond Previews for an November 2020 release.

NEW

PLUTOCRACY
Created by Abraham Martínez

2051.The world’s largest company, The Company, has seized power on a planetary scale and runs the world as if it were a business.

In a plutocracy, the richer one is, the more powerful one is. The elections have been replaced by general shareholders’ meetings where the votes are linked to the number of shares owned by citizens. Government is made up of those who own the most shares and it is the laws of the market that govern everything, creating a strange political system.

In this context, an anonymous citizen becomes compelled to uncover how the world came to this situation, without paying any attention to the official version. Without knowing very well why, several members of the government end up encouraging him to carry out this investigation which apparently goes against their interests, by giving him access to all the information. From then on, he decides to pursue two objectives: to discover the true history of The Company and to try to understand what are the various interests that are trying to influence his investigation. The truth behind this power and uncovering it can be frightening but he is determined and has little to lose.

At a time when it seems more and more natural that wealthy people such as Silvio Berlusconi or Donald Trump come to political power, this graphic novel envisions the possibility that, in the near future, the world will be governed by a plutocratic system in which it will go without saying that politics and wealth go hand in hand.

6×9, 144pp., full color HC, $24.99; HC ISBN 9781681122687; DIAMOND CODE: SEP201343

PREVIEWS

 

AVAILABLE AGAIN

GHETTO BROTHER: WARRIOR TO PEACEMAKER
Created by Julian Voloj and Claudia Ahlering

Introduction by Jeff Chang, author of Can’t Stop Won’t Stop: A History of the Hip Hop Generation

An engrossing and counter view of one of the most dangerous elements of American urban history, this graphic novel tells the true story of Benjy Melendez, son of Puerto-Rican immigrants, who founded, at the end of the 1960s, the notorious Gh managed to extract an incredibly positive energy from this riot ridden era: his multiracial gang promoted peace rather than violence.

After initiating a gang truce, the Ghetto Brothers held weekly concerts on the streets or in abandoned buildings, which fostered the emergence of hip-hop. Melendez also began to reclaim his Jewish roots after learning about his family’s dramatic crypto-Jewish background.

6×9, 128pp., Black &White, trade paperback., US $12.99; PB ISBN: 9781561639489; SEP201345

 

2024
Created by Ted Rall

Move forward two decades. See the world as the giant media moguls and software companies have become our new big brothers. They want the best for us. They know what’s best for us. And maybe we don’t always know so well.

Ted ‘I-need-more-enemies’ Rall updates 1984 in a scathing look at where we could be headed; and this is all Rall, no holes barred, no prisoners. His best and most chillingly funny work yet!

6×9, 96 pp., B&W, jacketed hardcover: $16.95; HC ISBN 156163279151695; DIAMOND CODE:SEP201344

PREVIEWS

Early Development of Willie Nelson: A Graphic History

willieoldcover

Early in the pitching and proposal process of Willie Nelson: A Graphic History, the plan was to do every part of the book myself – the writing, drawing, and everything that goes along with that. It’s a daunting and intimidating thing imagining the work that will go into a project before you start it. In 2017 and 2018, the plan was still to do it all on my own. It wasn’t until really feeling truly overwhelmed by it all that I considered bringing collaborators into the mix. I spoke with Terry at NBM, and he suggested I bring in different artists for each chapter – similar to NBM’s recent Beatles biography. This seemed like a great idea to me for a few reasons, but getting to choose collaborators I admired and friends I’d made throughout my career seemed like a great benefit. I could also devote more of my time to writing the script. The rest is history! Graphic History, that is.

Here are some very early art pieces I worked on while developing the project.

For more information on Willie Nelson: A Graphic History, go here.

 

radiowillie

Whiskey River, Take My Mind

pittman panel cropThis past fall, before the global pandemic shut down the very idea of live music, I attended the Outlaw Music Festival in Saratoga Springs, NY – with Willie Nelson and Family headlining. Before Willie took the stage, my friend and I got a bite to eat and ended up chatting with some fellow devoted Willie fans. I mentioned in our conversation that I was writing a graphic novel about Willie’s life – and as a sort of test of my fandom, they quizzed me on the song that opens every live Willie show.

Whiskey River, of course!” I said, referencing the Johnny Bush cover that Willie has since made his own. I passed the test!

I’m surprised my brain worked at all that night, considering the amount of secondhand smoke in the air.

Anyway, take a look at this cool silhouette panel from Chapter 5 of Willie Nelson: A Graphic History, illustrated by another fellow Kubert School Alumni Jason Pittman. If you get a chance and need a great graphic novel to read, check out Jason’s book The War For Kaleb.

For more information on the book, including how to order, click here.