Sequential Tart on Joe & Azat + the National Post

“The art of Joe and Azat is deceptively simple. Black and white images, mostly of faces and places, do an adept job of telling the story. On the surface it represents the simple way of life for the people of Turkmenistan. However, when you study the images in adjunct with the text, the complexity of this style becomes apparent. Longerman utilizes juxtaposition to explore perception and reality. People would like things to go one way, but the reality is that they must go another. For example, the Peace Corps administrators would like for Joe to follow the rules given to him for navigating Turkmenistan, but the reality is that he would never survive if he did.

If you like graphic novels with strong characterization and crisp art, determined to open your eyes and your heart, definitely grab a copy of Joe and Azat.”

Sequential Tart, giving it an 8 out of 10.

And one of Canada’s main papers, the National Post, picked up the piece on this book that ran in the Wall Street Journal.

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Story of O reviewed by Skin Two

The famous art magazine of bondage Skin Two and its chief Tim Woodward reviews our Story of O:

“Guido Crepax, the great pioneer of sensual graphic comics, uses multi-panelled pages to give the impression that you are peeping through a keyhole into O’s world of SM submission. She gives herself up to bondage, humiliation, sex with multiple partners, sodomy and even gets branded, all because it is the desire of her lover. This hardcover edition is a real collectors’ item.”

Jazma Online, while taken aback at the acts O lets herself be directed to do, chimes in:

“How to make a woman your slave so she will do anything for you. Not only do it but love doing it.
The art really stands out.”

Story of O, Joe & Azat and Things Undone news

First one out of the gate, the site Comics Waiting Room‘s Avril Brown saying this:

“From the very first page it is apparent why THE STORY OF O is recognized as Crepax’s finest work. The fine, sharp pencils turn each panel into a vintage etching. Some are fractured panels, giving the effect of seeing these sexual acts in a cracked mirror, and others are overlapping, yet all are uniquely visceral and stimulating. This is not a story of men abusing women or women feeling weak, this is a story of willful submission. O makes her choice and revels in it, even introducing other women to this world.”

Boston’s Weekly Dig calls Joe & Azat by Jesse Lonergan “a damn cool book”, the reviewer admits to this being her first graphic novel and loving it. Cute.

And for Things Undone:

White’s humor is pretty lighthearted, considering the subject matter, darkening only until the end when Rick acquires a handgun and contemplates suicide. It’s tough to get too down, however, by a book whose every page is colored in pumpkin-orange. “—Rod Lott of Bookgasm

Joe & Azat visit the Wall Street Journal…

Read more about Jesse Lonergan’s latest book JOE & AZAT in a piece on the Wall Street Journal online:

“The story follows the unlikely friendship of an American and a Turkmen as they trade cultural gaffes and tolerate life in a totalitarian regime. (Azat’s brother, for example, claims that he is the Turkmen version of Chuck Norris.)
Cartoonists have long tackled travel writing in a variety of ways. For Lonergan, who was inspired by the short stories of W. Somerset Maugham, he hoped to inject some humanity into a country that’s known mostly for its eccentric dictator.
“You only read about the crazy politics and it doesn’t give a sense of reality. I wanted to focus on what life was like for people there rather than the dictator who names January after himself,” says Lonergan. This is a real place and that can be lost in the stories I read.”
Of course, not everything Lonergan experienced made its way into the book. “I hated the food,” he says. “But that doesn’t need to be commented on.”

NBM in January: Little Nothings 3

Being solicited in comics stores now for shipping in January: Lewis Trondheim’s next Little Nothings!

LITTLE NOTHINGS
Vol. 3: “Uneasy Happiness”
Lewis TRONDHEIM
Trondheim’s comics blog’s next collection of his popular musings on the every day ironies of life, his little anxieties, funny observations while on travel, his way of finding some cloud over the brightest sunshine, his obsessive hypochondria and other oh-so-easy-to-relate-to nerdy preoccupations. As he says himself, it’s whole lotta not much. And people are lovin’ it:
“Fans of James Kochalka’s American Elf will find he has an international soulmate in Lewis Trondheim.” –The Onion
“If this isn’t the best thing that NBM has ever published in its 30 years of making graphic albums available to the English-language market, it’s one of the top three.”
Tom Spurgeon, Comics Reporter.
6×9, 128pp., full color trade pb with flaps, $14.95, ISBN 978-1-56163-576-4

And if you’ve been following this blog, you know we’ve started putting these webcomics on this very blog since early this week.  From today on, make sure to come over every Thursday and Monday to catch the latest one! You can you see them all together here.

And of course, don’t miss the first two volumes already out which have charmed many. Hey, they were a sell-out when Lewis signed at our booth in San Diego.

While we’re at it, you might like to know what our sister company, Papercutz is up to this month: from Classics Illustrated ‘The Count of Monte Cristo’ as adapted by Steven Grant and Dan Spiegle:

Classics Illustrated #8
The Count of Monte Cristo
By Alexander Dumas
Adapted by Steven Grant
Dan Spiegle, artist

Alexander Dumas’s The Count of Monte Cristo is an adventure story at heart, making Steven Grant and Dan Spiegle excellent choices to adapt this action-packed tale, which translates wonderfully to comics form. Edmond Dantes, a fugitive wrongfully accused of a crime and betrayed by a rival, escapes from prison to embark on a search for treasure. Eventually, Dantes returns to France after creating the new identity of the Count of Monte Cristo in order to exact vengeance on his betrayer. A whirlwind adventure for any young child who follows this epic tale, Grant and Spiegle capture the excitement of this classic story that has remained a best-seller for over a hundred years.

61/2x9, 56pp., full color hardcover $9.99,
ISBN-13: 978-1-59707-177-2

Welcome, Lewis.

Welcome to our latest addition to our author/editor blog: Lewis Trondheim as his pages get posted here from the upcoming comics blog collection LITTLE NOTHINGS: Uneasy Happiness, due out in January and being solicited now in comics shops. Lewis needs little introduction at this point, this comics blog series has charmed many for its authenticity and great sense of observation. He is also the co-creator on DUNGEON and we’ve published quite a few more books  of his including Li’l Santa, btw, a charming series for Xmas .

So every Monday and Thursday, make sure to drop by for his latest comics blog: Little Nothings. Of course you can RSS this as well.

Get the word out!

Reactions to Joe & Azat

Jesse Lonergan’s latest, JOE & AZAT is a fun discovery for reviewers:

Andrew ‘Capt. Comics’ Smith of Scripps Howard News service thought:

“One almost wants to meet Azat, the eternally optimistic and enthusiastic Turkmen with an idealized view of America, plus grandiose dreams of business success and romantic love. Joe knows that Azat’s ambitions are preposterous, but Azat’s enthusiasm is infectious and, more importantly, he proves to be a true friend. In addition to the personal narrative, “Joe and Azat” serves as something of a travelogue, a growing segment in graphic novels. Lonergan’s art is cartoony but effective. “Joe and Azat” is a quick read, and a pleasant diversion. Who knows? Maybe by the end you’ll want to go to Turkmenistan.”

Also:

“Bombarded with naïve questions concerning American customs from curious locals, overcharged for toothpaste at the village bazaar and constantly in danger of being forced into bribing someone, Joe is surviving by following the basic rules of Turkmenistan. When Joe accidentally breaks the most important rule of all (Never lose your passport), an acquaintance named Azat lends a helping hand and becomes his best friend. Often comical and at times achingly heartfelt, JOE AND AZAT is the tale of two men from different corners of the world, both physically and culturally, who form a connection guaranteed to endure whether or not they ever see each other again. Lonergan’s words are like his artwork: devoid of unnecessary flotsam and instead cut directly to the meat of the emotional material.”

Comics Waiting Room