You would think that the comics pick of the week would be a gimme. I mean, Fanfare/Ponent Mon is releasing Hideo Azuma’s Disappearance Diary. In fact, you generally only need to type “Fanfare/Ponent Mon is releasing…” to guarantee pick-of-the-week standing. And Disappearance Diary is an excellent, unusual comic book that’s absolutely well worth your time and money. (I reviewed the book here.) So it’s a lock, right? But…
It’s also generally true that you can begin a pick-of-the-week sentence with “NBM is releasing a new installment of Rick Geary’s Treasury of…” and feel reasonably confident that you won’t be easily contradicted. So we also have Geary’s Treasury of 20th Century Murder: The Lindbergh Child to greedily anticipate. (Seriously, if you haven’t treated yourself to any of Geary’s Treasury of Victorian Murder books, you need to be nicer to yourself. Much, much nicer.)
More often than not, you can begin a pick-of-the-week sentence with “New from First Second is…”, though not if that sentence finishes with “Life Sucks.” Eddie Campbell (collaborating with Dan Best) seems like a much safer bet, and I will certainly pick up a copy of The Amazing Remarkable Monsieur Leotard at some point.
Okay, moving on from the pick-of-the-week face-off, we reach the eye-catching oddity. First of all, Viz seems to be publishing its own Gantz equivalent, with Rei Hiroe’s Black Lagoon. I admit that the price point ($12.95) was what first caught my eye, because it made me think they’d added something to the Signature imprint. But no, it’s a rated-“Mature” book about mercenaries with characters named things like “Revy Two Hand,” which triggers both my curiosity and my Not for Me Alarm.
Lastly, a return to my comfort zone. I very much enjoyed the first volume of Uhm JungHyun’s Forest of the Gray City, originally from ICE Kunion. Yen Press has picked up the manhwa consortium’s catalog, and the second volume of Forest arrives Wednesday. It has a very josei feel to it, featuring a working woman who takes in a hunky male boarder to pay off some of her debts. It’s got lovely art and a smart, sexy vibe overall.