News pg. 32

Top Shelf Announces Capital Investment Deal

January 13, 2010 / More →

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January 13, 2010 -- Atlanta/Portland/New York -- Co-Publishers Chris Staros and Brett Warnock of independent graphic novel and comic book publisher Top Shelf Productions ( announced today that it has entered into a capital investment deal with new media entrepreneur John S. Johnson, and independent film producer Anthony Bregman.

Johnson, and Likely Story, Bregman’s film production company, have purchased a 33% interest in Top Shelf Productions, Inc. Johnson will join the board of Top Shelf, and Likely Story will get a first-look deal for all new Top Shelf publications for possible film and TV development.

This deal represents a supportive investment in the company; one that leaves Chris Staros and Brett Warnock as majority stockholders (and firmly in control of the company), but also brings to bear the resources, skills and connections of John and Anthony in helping the company expand and grow over time.

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ALEC in the Boston Globe!

January 11, 2010 / More →

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"The graphic novels that have really grabbed the public imagination have tended to be biographies and autobiographies," declares Stephen Weiner of The Boston Globe today. He mentions Art Spiegelman's Maus, Harvey Pekar's American Splendor, Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis, and Alison Bechdel's Fun Home as key masterworks in the graphic-autobiography genre that have crossed over to become true mainstream classics.

"To this list," continues Weiner, "we now can add Alec, Eddie Campbell’s graphic memoir starring his surrogate, the young cartoonist Alec MacGarry."

Fine company to be in, and we must agree: Eddie has produced a modern masterpiece. Check it out below!

Happy birthday to the King!

January 8, 2010 / More →

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If you know anything about Top Shelf publisher Chris Staros, you know he loves two things: comic books and Elvis Presley.

Well, in honor of Elvis's 75th birthday today, MTV's Splash Page blog has a great tribute to appearances of Elvis in comics. Including, of course, a shout-out to Rich Koslowski's incredible graphic novel The King -- which Variety called "a substantive and astonishing fun read, regardless of whether you like Elvis or believe he really died all those years ago." Meanwhile Library Journal wrote, "While telling a fine mystery story, Koslowski also explores, without condescension, the mythology that has grown up around Elvis, and muses seriously on the nature of belief in any God … recommended wherever Elvis is remembered."

Rich has a very exciting new book coming out in the spring -- BB Wolf and the 3 LPs, with J.D. Arnold -- so take this chance to grab The King now, and get ready for another project that uses music as a starting point to say so much more.

NPR loves Eddie Campbell!

January 7, 2010 / More →

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National Public Radio's Glen Weldon has a glowing new review up of Eddie Campbell's brand-new ALEC omnibus collection, The Years Have Pants!

"The fact that we are finally able to watch young Alec slowly evolve, page by page, from a cheeky wastrel into a mature artist deeply committed to his work and his family is nothing less than a revelation," he writes.

"As the years steadily accrete, it becomes impossible to ignore the staggering scope of what Campbell has accomplished here... the three decades of mature, complex and emotionally compelling work compiled here represent a major accomplishment in comics storytelling, and in storytelling, period. It's nothing less than a modern epic of the everyday."

Whew! So, who still needs a copy? What are you waiting for?

CBR's Robot 6 highlights two essential books coming soon from Top Shelf!

January 5, 2010 / More →

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The fine Robot 6 blog has kicked off their new year with a slew of 2010 previews... prominent among them, two titles from our spring slate!

Super Spy: The Lost Dossiers is a captivating follow-up to Matt Kindt's Eisner-nominated masterwork Super Spy. Check out Robot 6's exclusive preview (a full standalone story!) by clicking here. The book comes out in March, and it's in the Diamond catalog this month, so ask your comic shop to order your copy NOW!

Then, get a load of Stuart Immonen's stunning artwork and Kathryn Immonen's razor-sharp writing, as showcased in their ingenious Nazi art theft graphic novel, Moving Pictures! This one will debut in May, but one look at the preview on Robot 6 and you'll be counting the days.

The eagle has landed! Eddie Campbell's ALEC is here!

December 29, 2009 / More →

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Why is this such a big deal? Straight from the horse's mouth: "My participation in comics originally grew from my personal admiration for the work of Eddie Campbell, both in partnership with Alan Moore (on FROM HELL) and on his own (in the inimitably observant ALEC stories, as well as the irreverent BACCHUS tales). Driven to expose Eddie's work to the widest possible audience, I entered the comics business as Eddie's distributor in the United States, and soon thereafter partnered with Brett Warnock to re-launch Top Shelf. Fifteen years later (!), I'm holding in my hands one of the things I'm most proud of: A gorgeous edition of Eddie's groundbreaking autobiographical comics, collected in a giant 640-page single volume!" -- Chris Staros, co-publisher of Top Shelf Productions

Get your copies now -- at your favorite retailer, or direct from us! Click below for details:

Sean T. Collins and the Comics Reporter discuss BLANKETS!

December 21, 2009 / More →

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With the decade of the 00s coming to a close, there's been a lot of talk about Craig Thompson's Blankets being one of the decade's key graphic novels.

Now, respected comics critics Sean T. Collins and and Tom Spurgeon have posted a fascinating conversation to The Comics Reporter, about Blankets and its importance to the world of comics. It's perfect for a lazy holiday afternoon read (just like Blankets itself)! Dive in, why don't you?

FAR ARDEN podcasts galore!

December 16, 2009 / More →

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Here at Top Shelf we're lucky to publish not only some of the best cartoonists on Earth, but some of the friendliest as well! When you work as many conventions as we do, in fact, it's a must. Now, one of the sparkling conversationalists in our roster, Kevin Cannon (Far Arden), puts his charm on display this week with a plethora of podcast appearances for your listening pleasure!

First, hear Kevin bandy words with Canada's finest indie comics radio show host, Robin McConnell, on this episode of Inkstuds! Hear Robin coin the term "Canucksploitation" -- not to be missed!

Then, check out Kevin's chat with the irrepressible Charlito and Mr. Phil of Indie Spinner Rack! This lively talk captures the madness of San Diego Comic-Con.

Also, the dudes at The Mild Mannered Podcast devoted a recent episode to analyzing Far Arden, "an epic adventure of love, loss, and angry orphan punches"!

Finally, if you haven't already, you've gotta hear this radio drama of a scene from Far Arden produced by KFAI in Minneapolis! How cool is that?

Top Shelf Canadiana (real and fake) in the Montreal Gazette!

December 12, 2009 / More →

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Canadian journalist Ian McGillis has a new piece out in the Montreal Gazette highlighting 2009's best graphic novels... including two Top Shelf titles! First, Jeff Lemire's Essex County "achieves an epic sweep even though it’s relatively light on text" and "packs an enormous emotional punch." Then, Kevin Cannon's Far Arden serves as "an odd but effective cross of contemporary nerd-hero comix with Tintin-style exotica" which "zips along with manic logic." For more on these two books, check out the links below!

Amazon loves Jeffrey Brown's SULK!

December 4, 2009 / More →

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Amazon's awesome book blog Omnivoracious runs a spotlight today on the amazing Jeffrey Brown and his anything-goes anthology series SULK! Check it out here.

Writer Alex Carr points out one joke he particularly enjoyed from the latest installment, Sulk #3: The Kind of Strength that Comes from Madness, featuring pirates and time-traveling babies. He concludes, "There is plenty to love in the entire series, and it's more than enough to satisfy until Top Shelf's collection of Brown miscellany, Undeleted Scenes, publishes this summer." We couldn't agree more!

BLANKETS named best graphic novel of the decade!

December 3, 2009 / More →

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In a list packed with solid choices, Paste Magazine has honored Craig Thompson's Blankets with the #1 spot on their "20 Best Graphic Novels of the Decade" countdown! Year after year, Craig's incredible book continues to find new readers to fall in love with it, and we're extremely proud to be the publishers of this modern classic.

Eddie Campbell in USA Today!

December 1, 2009 / More →

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Almost there! The release of Eddie Campbell's must-have masterwork Alec: The Years Have Pants is getting mighty close. Eddie recently sat down with John Geddes of USA Today to reflect on the process of assembling this, the largest and most comprehensive collection of his work ever published. (Yep, it's bigger than From Hell!) Check out the interview here!

3 of the decade's best comics!

November 24, 2009 / More →

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What a decade! The good folks over at The AV Club have just stuck their necks out on the line by announcing their picks for "The Best Comics of the '00s." The war rages on in their comment threads, of course, but that's what these things are for -- starting conversations!

For our part, we're chuffed to see Top Shelf take three of the top 25 positions, with James Kochalka's American Elf, Craig Thompson's Blankets, and Alex Robinson's Box Office Poison taking their places among some great works from other publishers. If you haven't experienced these three masterpieces for yourself... well, what are you waiting for?! Details and previews of each book can be found below:

Operation ALEC rolls onward!

November 10, 2009 / More →

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Eddie Campbell's domination of all media continues, as he's recently done interviews with Library Journal, Comic Book Resources' Robot 6, and the fine folks at Publishers Weekly!

What major theme has Eddie recently discovered in his work that he never noticed before? What's his next book about? What makes Eddie say "suddenly, my wife had to deal with the possibility that I might be the well-known author I’ve always been claiming to be"? You'll have to read the interviews to find out!

It's all in anticipation of the full release of ALEC: The Years Have Pants, coming to you next month!

The AV Club loves Eddie Campbell!

October 26, 2009 / More →

Image for The AV Club loves Eddie Campbell!

The good folks at The AV Club got an advance look at the upcoming Eddie Campbell omnibus Alec: The Years Have Pants, and they're calling it "one of the must-own releases of the year." Click here to read their review (as well as another rave review, of Kevin Cannon's awesome Far Arden)! Then mosey on over to the great interview between Eddie and The AV Club's Leonard Pierce, and watch Eddie drop some serious insight about his book, his life, the comics medium, the art of autobiography, and everything under the sun!