The Greatest of Marlys

If you were asking me (and I’m just going to assume that you already did, very quietly, to yourself just now) what the essential quality is for any worthwhile “young adult” author, I would say it’s first and foremost honesty. … Continue reading


The Greatest of Marlys

The Greatest of Marlys collects Barry’s comic strip Ernie Pook’s Comeek, which ran in alt-weekly newspapers like The Chicago Reader and The Seattle Stranger. The book features a selection of stories about Marlys, a scrappy red-headed prepubescent girl living with … Continue reading


Kramers Ergot 9

It must be stated up front that Kramers Ergot has made life far too easy for critics. Anthologies are often difficult to analyze, because most of them wear the pragmatic limits of their creation like flimsy invisible dust jackets. It … Continue reading

Bad Time

It Is the Bad Time

In the fall of 2015, I curated an art exhibition at Appalachian State University titled “At the Junction of Words and Pictures: The Tenth Anniversary of the Center for Cartoon Studies”. The show was not an unqualified success—as a first-time … Continue reading


Hot Dog Taste Test

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Dream Tube

The eye is unavoidable throughout Rebekka Dunlap’s debut comics collection, Dream Tube. In the first of the book’s stories, “Brooklyn Witch Tweets”, readers meet a sexually-frustrated illustrator with an eye for a head. In “Cities and Spaces and”, a man … Continue reading


Compass South

Compass South is a YA adventure graphic novel, a genre I’m happy to see revived in comics. While the story shows its influences to a distracting degree (Tintin, et al), it’s an entertaining, suspenseful tale, albeit with a bit of … Continue reading


Sir Alfred No. 3

What comes to mind when you hear the name Alfred Hitchcock? A scene from one of his many acclaimed films, perhaps? Or maybe the theme song to his television show? My suspicion is that somewhere in that nanosecond or two … Continue reading