A post over at Manga critic that makes us blush. Around an exhibit of Manhwa and a list provided there of the best, this critic sought to make a revision and added two of our 3 manhwas to a top ten must-read list: Run Bon-Gu, Run and at the very top: Buja’s Diary.
We’re making a few:
“Wholly unlike most of the other English-translated manhwa hitting the shelves these days, this volume is a hidden gem, with glimpses of true brilliance that promise a great future for the artist.”
“Kleid’s story reads like something Philip Roth, or perhaps Nathan Englander, would write if they worked in comics.”
“I consider Trondheim to be the best living comics creator in the world right now, and this is him working at his purest form.”
“Byun is a stunning draftsman and character designer, but one got a sense of restlessness from this collection of stories. This book felt like an author trying to shake something loose in himself and looking to a different set of influences and styles. Byun is certainly an artist whose work I’d like to see more of.”
Rob Clough, High Low
Mijeong, a Korean manhwa, got a couple of reviews recently:
“very thought provoking. It touches on some serious issues and treats them with respect”
The Feminist Review
“The stories in Mijeong work like poetry, evoking senses, feelings, that neither the words nor the images alone accomplish. Breathtaking artwork.”
New City (Chicago alt. paper)
Nationally syndicated columnist Andrew ‘Capt. Comics’ Smith who also has a regular column in the Comics Buyers Guide, has this to say about two of our recent books:
“Whodunit? As usual, that’s up to you. Geary never fails to impress and “Famous Players” is just another reason why.”
On our latest Manhwa ‘Mijeong’:
“Overall, I feel Byun is an extraordinary artistic talent, fairly bursting from his studio, whose skills in story construction and characterization are still catching up.”
Smith is syndicated in the Scripps-Howard paper chain.
“Korean-born Byun Byung-Jun is little known in these parts, except for die-hard manga and graphic novel fans. With luck, MIJEONG, his second collection of short fiction, will change that. It should, because this impressively talented artist deserves a wider audience.
The seven stories here are mostly about young people, and are full of youthful longings, desires, frustrations and melancholy. Their common feature is the city setting, quite possibly based upon Seoul. Byung-Jun’s characters walk down urban streets and alleys, mostly crowded but sometimes deserted. And he often pulls back the focus to include wide shots of streets or entire skylines, as though shot from above. It’s a technique that emphasizes the reader’s role as observer, as well as heightens the lonely ambience of each story.”
Three reviews of note have appeared recently:
“This is an outstanding Dungeons and Dragons parody that serves as a stand-alone story. Readers will be entertained, even those unaccustomed to comic fantasy fiction. These anthropomorphic characters are well drawn, and the snappy dialogue is craftily paired with Boulet’s stunning imagery.“
School Library Journal on Dungeon Zenith vol.3
“Geary fathoms what makes comics such an ideal form for true crime lovers. I know there are true crime readers out there who like to be disciplined by their authors, who like to be told who done it and why, and I suppose such readers won’t appreciate Geary’s adamant refusal to direct our conclusions. But Geary understands that the real pleasure of reading history, criminal cases, and comics is that we aren’t rendered passive. And he recognizes that the discomfit we feel from not knowing all the answers can be assuaged only by knowing more, always more. Geary’s mastery—as both artist and storyteller—is allowing us to feel comfortable in our uncertainty by describing it with precise detail. In this way, his slender books written in formulaic style brilliantly capture not only the historical moments he records within their own pages, but our own. “
Publishers Weekly on Mijeong
Marc Mason at Comics Waiting Room has just reviewed two of our recent books:
“MIJEONG is a stunning Korean manhwa. The ending packs a powerful one-two punch and sticks with you far beyond when you put the book down. Each tale in the book has at least some merit to it, as even the weaker ones are accompanied by Byung-Jun’s stunning artistic talents- this is an amazing looking book. This is a versatile and talented creator and I’d be interested in seeing more of his work.”
“Even more visually stunning is ARLENE’S HEART by Victoria Frances. Frances’ artwork is astonishing to behold- there were countless pages that I couldn’t help but wonder how they’d look framed and on a wall. Quite an unusual reading experience.”
A slew of reviews of late over at Precocious Curmudgeon!
First David Welsh, the author of this blog has some good words about us:
“I don’t think I’ve ever sat down and considered just how much reading pleasure I’ve gotten out of NBM’s catalog. Maybe it’s because they have a very restrained publishing schedule, only a few books a month. Still, it’s remiss of me, because they’re one of those publishers like Drawn & Quarterly and Fanfare/Ponent Mon with an excellent rate of return for my comics dollar. I can’t think of many NBM books that I haven’t really loved, or at least appreciated for their ambition and craft. So while I wait for Mijeong, I thought I’d run down memory lane and revisit some of my favorite books from NBM.”
Then he goes on to point out some of our recent best books: Glacial Period, Little Nothings, points to the Murder of Abraham Lincoln as his fave Geary book, and, while waiting for Mijeong, extolls author Byun Byung Jun’s previous Run, Bong-Gu, Run!