Shang Chi Omnibus Vol. 1


A couple of months ago I was thrilled to learn that Marvel was finally going to do what I thought it would never do and that’s to reprint the entire run of Shang Chi from the ’70’s. The reason it took so long was probably because Shang was supposed to be the son of Fu Manchu, who was created by Sax Rohmer and Marvel had licensed it from his estate.

Happily that’s worked out and they are going to finally reprint the whole 100 plus issue run and the B&W magazine he was in as well.

Shang Chi is one of the finest extended stories ever told in graphic form. It’s essentially a coming of age story mixed with martial arts and spy elements as well. Lots of philosophy involved as well of course. Naturally I don’t agree with a lot of what’s said in here, but I appreciate the depth and I love watching Shang struggle against his father and the world around him that he doesn’t approve of or fit into very well.

Well worth your time and is available at Instock Trades for less than it is on Amazon. Hint – if you are going to get it get the cover above not the other one. This is will increase the value of the book and is just better as well.


Shang Chi Omnibus Vol. 1

Lazarus The Second Collection


Since I praised the first collection of this amazing independent comic I just had to do the second one. Greg Ruka and Michael lark (with letters by Jodi Wynne and colors by Santi Arcas) continues to deliver in a huge way.

The artwork is perfect for this kind of story, but it is the story continues to keep me hooked. Starting with a premise that I consider very implausible at best Ruka develops it with a story peopled with characters that you really care about.

This collection drives things forward to a conclusion that I didn’t expect though maybe I should have. Truth is I was so caught up in what was going on that I wasn’t even trying to guess what would come next.

So I was surprised with that final panel and can’t wait for the next collection to to put out.

Yes I could buy the monthly (or there abouts) comic, but I like this format much better. It looks great on my bookshelf and as long as the quality stays at this level I’ll be a loyal and happy customer.

Highly recommended. You can get it at Discount Trades or Amazon of course.

Lazarus The Second Collection

Lady Mechanika, Vol. 1

LMEK-05AHere’s another amazing graphic art book. This one is also an independent called Lady Mechanika. It’s a Steam Punk fantasy and when you combine the artwork with the story it’s a real winner.

I love the art work. It fits the steam punk feel you want in a story of this type. On the whole it’s very good. Given the nature of the protagonist there are more than a few striking poses here. And yes, it’s a bit over the top sexy at times, but it’s not graphic or offensive, to me at least.

Lady Mechanika is a kind of classic hero who knows very little of her past, has been altered by someone, she knows not who, with mechanical replacements for her hands, eyes, etc.

She’s well known in this world and is an adventurer. Through her adventures she’s always seeking to find out about her past. One of the enemies from her past is a woman who looks a lot like the one eyed Elle Driver from Kill Bill.

I really enjoyed this collection and if you like this type of literature you probably will also. You can get it on Amazon or In-Stock Trades  or from it’s creator Joe Benitez as well.

Lady Mechanika, Vol. 1

Walter Simonson’s Ragnarok, Pt. 1

ragnarok-issue-1re_2One of the things I enjoy is reading “graphic stories,” or as most normal people would say, “comic books.” They’ve come a long way from those old comics you remember as a kid too.

Back in the 1980’s Walter Simonson was a big hit at Marvel Comics. Probably his best known works was an amazing run on Thor. I read it as it came out and last year picked up the huge Omnibus Marvel put out about it.

Well last year Simonson returned to Thor – sort of. Not’s Marvel’s Thor mind you, but to a new and incredible take on the Norse Mythos. His first volume has been collected into an over sized hardback called “Last God Standing.”

It is graphic story telling at it’s finest. If you like fantasy or mythology you will love this. The art is Simonson classic, bold and a bit of what I would call “sketchy” or rough look to it. But it captures your imagination and tells the story with power and clarity.

Summing up this story isn’t easy. Ragnarok happened years ago. Thor’s bones are in an old cavern in, still sitting up in a chair. He is somehow revived, yet stays skeletal (including the lack of a lower jaw but he manages to talk), and the fun begins.

You’ve got Dark Elves, magic, and of course Mjolnir, though like it’s Master it too has a whole new look.

You can get this incredible work of art on Amazon or at In-stock Trades and it gets my highest recommendation. 

Walter Simonson’s Ragnarok, Pt. 1