Daniel Freedman + CROM return for a third volume of ‘Birdking’

The journey to the golden city of Atlas continues this November in the dark fantasy graphic novel.

The Raiders creative team of Daniel Freedman and CROM return to Dark Horse Comics this fall with a third volume of Birdking, their graphic novel series about a teenage girl Bianca and the guardian spirit known only as the “Birdking.”

Together, they spent the previous two volumes trying to reach the city of Atlas, but it looks like only one of them might complete the quest.

“Volume 3 marks a huge turning point for both Bianca and Birdking,” said Freedman, “ and we couldn’t be more excited for readers to experience the next stage of their journey and relish in their self-discoveries and hard-fought triumphs.”

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‘Flash Gordon Adventures’ will arrive from Papercutz this fall

Art Baltazar and Franco will chronicle new kid-friendly adventures featuring Flash, Ming, Dale and more.

Papercutz, the kids comics company owned by Mad Cave Studios, has announced their Flash Gordon graphic novel series aimed at kids — Flash Gordon Adventures by the Tiny Titans team of Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani.

Mad Cave announced the acquisition of the Flash Gordon license last year, and has since revealed several comic series they’ll be publishing this year. So this new series by Papercutz is part of that bigger plan. And bringing in Baltazar and Franco is of course a stroke of genius.

“When I was a kid, I watched the Flash Gordon serials every weekend with my dad. Then! I played with the action figures and watched the cartoons! The cartoon had all these cool aliens and colorful characters,” Baltazar said. “Flash is cool space adventuring swashbuckling hero and he did it  first!  When Papercutz announced Flash Gordon, I was like, ‘Dang! I know that guy. I can make some cool comics with him.’ So they asked, and I said, ‘Yes!’” 

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Mat Johnson + Steve Lieber explore family secrets + time travel in ‘Backflash’

The new graphic novel will debut from Dark Horse’s Berger Books imprint this fall.

Mat Johnson, writer of Incognegro and its sequel, Incognegro: Renaissance, is working with Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen artist Steve Lieber on a new graphic novel that offers “a delightfully strange and fresh take on time travel.” Backflash, which will be published by Dark Horse Comics’ Berger Books imprint, is scheduled to come out this fall.

They’re joined by colorist Lee Loughridge and letterer Clem Robins on the project, which is being edited by Karen Berger. She previously worked with Johnson when she was at Vertigo on the first Incognegro book, as well as Dark Rain: A New Orleans Story, Right State and a Hellblazer special. She also edited the five-issue Incognegro: Renaissance since coming to Dark Horse.

According to the news release, Backflash tells the story of Devin whose life is “spiraling out of control, until he discovers the impossible: with a random touch of an article of family memorabilia, he can travel back in time, mentally reliving the best moments of his past while escaping his problems of the present.” But it comes with consequences, as he discovers a family secret he was never supposed to find out.

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‘Justice Warriors’ returns this fall as an original graphic novel

‘Justice Warriors: Vote Harder’ takes aim at politics and elections.

Matt Bors and Ben Clarkson’s Justice Warriors will return from Ahoy Comics this fall as a full-length graphic novel, titled Justice Warriors: Vote Harder.

A dystopian satire series that pokes fun at capitalism and law enforcement in a future of severe inequality, the first Justice Warriors miniseries was released in 2022 and collected in 2023. This new graphic novel takes aim at politics and elections, which no doubt makes it the perfect companion to what’s happening in America this year.

“Bubble City is having its first ever mayoral election and mutant cops Swamp and Schitt are pulled in to special duty to protect the vote from the people,” Bors said in his newsletter. “Ben Clarkson and I have been hard at work, along with our colorist Felipe Sobreiro, to top our first volume of the series and bring you an election year satire for the ages.”

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The first meeting of ‘The Graveyard Club’ convenes in September

R.L. Stine and Carola Borelli bring fresh YA scares this fall.

Welcome to Graves End, a town with a curious trait — it’s surrounded by graveyards. That’s the perfect meeting place for The Graveyard Club, a new project coming from horror master R.L. Stine, artist Carola Borelli and BOOM! Studios.

“In The Graveyard Club graphic novels, the teens hang out in the graveyard–because it might be the safest place in town,” Stine said. “Their town is surrounded by graveyards. And swarms of red-eyed bats come swooping out every night. And that’s just the BEGINNING of the horror! I’m having a lot of fun with this series!”

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‘Gender Queer,’ ‘Flamer’ among the most banned books of 2023

For the third year in a row, a record number of books were challenged in libraries and schools.

Gender Queer by Maia Kobabe was once again the most challenged book in libraries in 2023, as reported today by the American Library Association. This makes the third year in a row that the graphic novel about gender identity has topped the list.

Gender Queer was one of seven books in the top 10 that was challenged based on LGBTQIA+ content, along with two other graphic novels — Flamer by Mike Curato, which was the fifth most challenged book, and Let’s Talk About It by Erika Moen and Matthew Nolan, which was the ninth.

“In looking at the titles of the most challenged books from last year, it’s obvious that the pressure groups are targeting books about LGBTQIA+ people and people of color,” said ALA President Emily Drabinski. “At ALA, we are fighting for the freedom to choose what you want to read. Shining a light on the harmful workings of these pressure groups is one of the actions we must take to protect our right to read.”

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‘Joker: The World’ will feature creators from 13 countries

The anthology will arrive in September, just in time for Batman Day.

Back in 2021, DC’s Batman: The World anthology brought together Batman stories by creators from around the world. DC has announced a similar project for this September titled Joker: The World, which will again bring together international creators to tell stories about the Clown Prince of Crime.

The book will include stories by creative teams from 13 different countries, with contributions from Geoff Johns, Satoshi Miyagawa, David Rubin, German Peralta, Alvaro Fong Varela, Jason Fabok and more. In the press release, DC said the stories will be “tailored to the authentic style, tone and cultural sensibilities of different nations around the world.”

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Jeffrey Brown returns for a second ‘Batman and Robin and Howard’ graphic novel at DC

‘Summer Breakdown’ continues the story of Damian Wayne’s middle school years with his rival-turned-friend Howard.

Jeffrey Brown’s 2021 graphic novel Batman and Robin and Howard was a delight, so I’m happy to see that DC has announced a sequel to the story that featured Damian, his middle-school rival Howard and a dad joke-spouting Batman.

“Having the opportunity to make a second DC middle grade book, I first thought I’d come up with all new characters and a new story with a different superhero,” Brown said. “But as I started writing, I kept thinking about Robin and Howard (and Batman, of course), and eventually realized what I really wanted to do was continue their story. The sequel gives a different look at family life for Damian when he isn’t Robin, and more action when he is – but hopefully readers will still find all the same humor and heart that I tried to put into the first book.”

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Top Shelf will release Alan Moore’s ‘The Moon and Serpent Bumper Book of Magic’ in October

The grimoire promises ‘endless necromantic fun for all the family.’

The long-delayed The Moon and Serpent Bumper Book of Magic by writer and author Alan Moore and his magical mentor Steve Moore will finally materialize in October from Top Shelf Comix and UK publisher Knockabout Ltd.

This “celebration of magic and the occult” will feature prose, illustration and sequential art, with contributions by several of Alan Moore’s previous colleagues, including John Coulthart, Steve Parkhouse, Rick Veitch, Ben Wickey and the late Kevin O’Neill.

“One of the great honors of my publishing career has been to work with Alan Moore on so many monumental projects, like From Hell and Lost Girls,” said Chris Staros, editor-in-chief of Top Shelf Productions. “The Moon and Serpent Bumper Book of Magic represents an amazing capstone, created by Alan and Steve, and brilliantly brought to life by five unforgettable artists. It’s been a privilege to watch those magical minds spend years building this grimoire, and I’m proud to join Knockabout in finally sharing it with the world.”

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Visit a town cast in eternal darkness in Lambert + Sharpe’s ‘The Night Mother’

Jeremy Lambert and Alexa Sharpe’s new graphic novel will arrive in October from Oni Press.

Oni Press will cozy up to The Night Mother, a new graphic novel by Jeremy Lambert, writer of Doom Patrol, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Goosebumps and more, and artist Alexa Sharpe, who has worked on Lumberjanes, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and more. They’re joined by letterer Becca Carey for the dark fantasy.

The story is set in a seaside town cast into perpetual night when the sun disappears, where Madeline Tock lives in the local graveyard and talks to the dead — and prepares to battle the Night Mother for the soul of her town.

The Night Mother is a supernatural snow globe world of the unknown where a frightened Madeline Tock must learn to trust herself in a place of warped expectations. A place where the dead can whisper and the woman from the moon gathers their souls in her lantern,” Lambert said. “We all have our own crucible when we are younger… a pressure cooker of fears, loves and discoveries… when we learn about who we are along with the many shadows that follow us. This is Maddy’s.”

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‘Holler’ tells the story of the ‘unkempt, final generation of analog teenagers’

Dark Horse Comics will collect Jeremy Massie’s comic into one volume later this year.

Dark Horse Comics will collect Holler, Jeremy Massie’s ode to the grunge era of the 1990s, into one volume this fall.

Originally self-published via crowdfunding and It’s Alive, the collection will include all eight issues Massie produced and eventually posted on his website. The comic tells the story of Magnesium Mama, the grunge band formed by four friends in an Appalachian town in Virginia.

“I’ve gotten to a certain time in my life where I’ve gotten introspective, maybe even sentimental, about the time and place I grew up,” said Massie. “Even if the times and place weren’t the greatest, I was dwelling on that period a lot. I was so hung up on it I started making comics about my band-playing teenage years. They’re the type of comics I’ve always wanted to make.”

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Papercutz will publish several Disney + Pixar graphic novels later this year

The Mad Cave imprint will release graphic novels featuring ‘Turning Red,’ ‘Encanto’ and more.

Papercutz, the kid’s graphic novel imprint owned by Mad Cave Studios, has announced a publishing partnership with Disney that’ll bring Turning Red, Phineas & Ferb, Encanto, Frozen and more to comics — or back to comics, in some cases — later this year.

The partnership isn’t too much of a surprise, as Papercutz announced a Free Comic Book Day title featuring Encanto and Turning Red for this year’s event. But the bench goes deeper than those two titles, as their plans include several titles that look like they may be reprints. For instance, the listing for Phineas & Ferb notes that it’s collecting comics that originally appeared in the Disney Presents magazine.

Here’s a rundown on what they plan to publish:

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