Upcoming 9/2/2009

Time for a quick look at this week’s ComicList:

stitchesIn a given year, you usually get one original graphic novel as ambitious and accomplished as David Mazzucchelli’s Asterios Polyp (Pantheon). That splendid book will have to make room for David Small’s Stitches (W.W. North), due to arrive Wednesday. It’s an extraordinary autobiographical graphic novel about the horrors of Small’s childhood, but it’s completely without self-indulgence or meandering. Small’s ability to compose his experiences into a complex, disturbing narrative is absolutely miraculous. It’s a true story that flows and breathes like the best made-up story, and I think everyone should read it. I really, really do.

I was quite taken with Natsuna Kawase’s The Lapis Lazuli Crown (CMX), though I found myself a little less impressed with Kawase’s earlier work, A Tale of an Unknown Country (also CMX and due this week). It’s not without its charms, but it’s easy to see how much Kawase refined her storytelling skills between the two works. I agree with Johanna Draper Carlson’s review of Country.

sandchron6This is one of those weeks when Viz decides to release loads and loads of manga upon an unsuspecting public, including many of their very best shôjo titles. Those include:

  • the 11th volume of Kazune Kawahara’s High School Debut
  • the 7th volume of Chica Umino’s Honey and Clover
  • the 18th volume of Ai Yazawa’s NANA
  • and the 6th volume of Hinako Ashihara’s Sand Chronicles.
  • If the total at the cash register doesn’t already have you crying, not to worry. The comics themselves probably will.