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Independent Comic Spotlight: Fall Edition

Charlie Chan Hock Chye

It’s here.  Independent Comic Spotlight.  Welcome back, fans of the indy comic book and graphic novel scene!  Some folks have been sending me their work and it’s about that time to give them a quick shout-out.  Here are some great new independent comics you should be picking up at your earliest possible convenience!

Intro to Alien Invasion by Owen King, Mark Jude Poirier, and Nancy Ahn

*Stephen King’s son does a great job giving us a fun graphic novel (with the help of writer friend Poirier and artist friend Ahn) about a small liberal arts college student who stumbles upon an alien invasion plot in the beautiful and secluded world of Fenton College.  Though full of stereotypical characters, the protagonist is likable enough to forgive all of the supporting cast members.

My Rating: 4/5

A Rapper’s Words: Ghost in a Shell #1 by Quanstar

*The first issue of a series that is one part social commentary, one part rapper’s manifesto, and one part technology spotlight.  As an added bonus, the comic book features a free ride (up to $20) from Uber, which strikes me as either really clever or sort of silly, depending on your definitions of satire, parody, and irony.

My Rating: 3/5

Out on the Wire: The Storytelling Secrets of the New Masters of Radio by Jessica Abel

*We get a pretty in-depth analysis and investigation into the currently most popular radio talk show hosts (seven of them, to be exact) in this new graphic novel.  Fans of the newly-taking off trend of “graphic narratives” will enjoy this one, as will anyone who religiously listens to the radio for things beyond the newest hit singles.

My Rating: 3/5

Stargirl by Brandon Rhiness, Brittni Bromley, and Przemyslaw Dedelis

*An ongoing comic book series (three issues out so far) about a girl and a few anthropomorphic heroes (and villains) out in space.  Could this be the next Star Wars, with a potential gear toward girl power?  I think so.  Check it out.  With fantastic artwork to boot, it’s a must for any sci-fi fanatics.

My Rating: 3/5

Darkness Within by Massimo Rossi and Stefano Cardoselli

*Markosia’s graphic novels are unique in many ways, but their horror titles are by far their strongest.  This one is no exception, with great sci-fi horror action and another thrilling script from Rossi.  Cardoselli’s artwork is reminiscent of that of Christ Bachalo, for superhero fans.

My Rating: 3/5

Voivod: The True Story of Vlad the Impaler by Massimo Rossi and Marco DeLuca

*Who doesn’t love a good Dracula story?  Exactly.  Another great script from Rossi, this time with unique artwork from DeLuca, this one is a must for any fans of the vampire mythos, history’s greatest villains, or just excellent comics in general.

My Rating: 3.5/5

Old Wounds by Russell Lissau and John Bivens

*A great graphic novel collection of the four-issue miniseries from Pop! Goes the Icon from a great crime writer (Lissau) and a longtime superhero artist (Bivens) gives us a great product that is very complete, very dark, and full of secrets.  Gritty and excellent, and also available in individual issues, albeit without the backup story and bonus features.

My Rating: 3/5

The Voyageur by Jeff Sturge and Nick Marinkovich

*Written by someone who is known for having a meticulous love of history and drawn by someone who gives us a breathtaking vision of the past, this first entry into what will more than likely be a series of graphic novels introduces us to some great Irish characters in a dark and seemingly hopeless 17th century world.  The art alone is worth picking up this one.

My Rating: 3/5

The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye by Sonny Liew

*Due out March of 2016, this one came to my doorstep from superstar Sonny Liew directly.  A fantastic person and excellent artist, he now can put great writer on his ever-expanding resume.  The story and celebration of “the greatest comic book artist you’ve probably never heard of” is a genuine delight.  Part biography, part commentary, and all heart.  Fans of Doctor Fate and The Shadow Hero will love this book.  I know I did.

My Rating: 5/5

So there you have it.  Have a great new comic (or book) that needs some exposure?  Send me a copy!  Email me at for my address and I’ll get you into the review queue.  And who knows, maybe you’ll impress me enough to get an entire article devoted to your book (or comic) project!

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