News pg. 25

Top Shelf announces sequel to Ludovic Debeurme's LUCILLE!

September 24, 2011 / More →

Image for Top Shelf announces sequel to Ludovic Debeurme's LUCILLE!

In this thoughtful interview with author Ludovic Debeurme, the Los Angeles Times breaks the news that Top Shelf Productions will be publishing the English translation of Renée, the stunning sequel to his acclaimed graphic novel Lucille!

Ludovic, who recently launched the French edition of Renée, had this to say about his new book: "I’ve moved from a minimalist image to a more busy style, similar to engraving, to capture the reader in frozen moments that can be felt as single images, like paintings... We find the main characters, as well as new ones, including Renée. This allowed me to update my story to make it closer to the questions on my mind at the time of writing this new book. The relationship between the body and the pain and anger of all these protagonists should, I hope, invite the reader to consider these concepts in a more universal way."

Lucille has already racked up high praise since its debut from Top Shelf:

"A coherent, compelling narrative... the love affair in Lucille burns bright, illuminating two lives." -- The AV Club

"A wonderful, satisfying experience to read and savour and easily one of the truly unmissable bande dessinée translations of the year." -- Paul Gravett, author of Graphic Novels: Stories to Change Your Life

"The type of story the graphic novel was meant for." -- Kelly Stephenson, Playback:STL

"A stunner... Lucille is definitely one of the most significant graphic novel releases of the year." -- Heidi MacDonald, The Beat

"A deserved prize winner at Angoulême. Debeurme has created characters of tremendous depth here." -- Jonathan Rigby, Page 45

We look forward to sharing Renée with you in late 2012!

A Big Thanks to Everyone Who Participated in the Top Shelf Web Sale!

September 24, 2011 / More →

Image for A Big Thanks to Everyone Who Participated in the Top Shelf Web Sale!

Hey Gang,

Just wanted to thank everyone for participating in the Top Shelf web sale. We got a bunch more orders than we anticipated, so the three of us have been working furiously to get them all out. There aren't tracking #s on these, via the US Postal Service, but we guarantee their delivery -- and all of them will be out in the mail by next week at the latest (with a bunch on the way already). Thanks for your patience here, and the Top Shelf books will be with you shortly.

Your friend thru comics,
Chris Staros

Top Shelf goes to Detroit Fanfare!

September 20, 2011 / More →

Image for Top Shelf goes to Detroit Fanfare!

For the first time ever, Top Shelf is headed to DETROIT!

Chris Staros will be there repping Top Shelf, and have a full line of graphic novels at the Detroit Fanfare this weekend (September 24-25).

See y'all at the show!

UNDERWIRE! DRAGON PUNCHER 2! It's a Small Press Xplosion of savings at SPX this weekend!

September 7, 2011 / More →

Image for UNDERWIRE! DRAGON PUNCHER 2! It's a Small Press Xplosion of savings at SPX this weekend!

We're thrilled to be heading to DC this weekend for the 2011 Small Press Expo - SPX! And boy, is it gonna be a great show. What's on tap:


Underwire (with Jennifer Hayden at our booth!)
Dragon Puncher 2: Dragon Puncher Island (with James Kochalka at our booth!)
Korgi 3: A Hollow Beginning by Christian Slade


Jennifer Hayden (Underwire)
James Kochalka (Superf*ckers, Johnny Boo)
Nate Powell (Any Empire)
Jess Fink (Chester 5000)
J.D. Arnold (BB Wolf)
Alex Robinson (celebrating the 10th anniversary of Box Office Poison)
Tony Consiglio (110 Percent)
with your pals Chris Staros & Leigh Walton!

Plus Craig Thompson will be a guest of the show, signing to benefit the CBLDF, and we'll have copies of the new Blankets hardcover for sale, ready for you to bring to him!


What's more, since SPX falls during our Massive $3 Sale this year, we're expanding the sale to books bought at the show -- get a whopping 25% off your entire SPX order if you buy at least two items!

See you at the Bethesda North Marriott this weekend!


August 31, 2011 / More →


The hits keep on coming! Not long after we launched LEAGUE 1969, the new deluxe editions of BLANKETS, LUCILLE, and THE HOMELAND DIRECTIVE, here come three more hotly anticipated Top Shelf books, available NOW!

See what the critics are already saying:

by Kagan McLeod
-- ISBN: 978-1-891830-83-9, Diamond code: MAY11-1197
-- 464-page flexi-cover graphic novel, 6.75" x 9.5"
-- $24.95 (US), Older teens (16+) and adults

Don't miss the awesome VIDEO TRAILER!

"All of that buzz and hype was completely on the money... It's like the best kung-fu movie you've ever seen, unimpaired by time or budget constraints, willing to take everything about kung-fu that everyone loves and throw it all together." -- Chad Nevett, Comic Book Resources

"Infinite Kung Fu is glorious and deranged in the way that all comics should be." — Warren Ellis, author of Transmetropolitan, Red, and Crooked Little Vein

"If Egon Schiele and Yim Wing Chun had a son together, he'd be called Kagan McLeod. Infinite Kung Fu is like a bitch-slap to your imagination. I am a BIG fan." — Geof Darrow, author & artist of Shaolin Cowboy and conceptual designer for The Matrix

"A book for fans of Bruce Lee movies, zombies, ancient Chinese mythology, and any other off-the-wall genre you can think of... Infinite Kung Fu brings a style that separates it from the rest and lifts comics out of the overly serious rut that the medium has been stuck in for nearly a decade." — Jason Sarafino, Complex

"The best elements of horror, Westerns, and of course, kung fu films are seamlessly interlaced to tell a highly imaginative tale. You couldn't sandblast the smile from my face as I read this." Ain't It Cool News


by Ray Friesen
-- ISBN: 978-1-60309-071-1, Diamond code: APR11-1165
-- 96-page full-color hardcover graphic novel, 6.5" x 8.5"
-- 9.95 (US), All ages

"Ray Friesen is a remarkable cartoonist. He makes the silly funny and the funny sublime. The world seems lighter after reading a Ray Friesen book." -- Jimmy Gownley, creator of Amelia Rules!

"Ray Friesen is a veritable fount of silliness, and his Pirate Penguin vs. Ninja Chicken is a good example of that... it's guaranteed to make your geeklets giggle." -- Jonathan Liu,

“The jokey asides and playfully sophisticated take on language are reminiscent of Walt Kelly’s Pogo... [a] manic blend of mayhem and adventure.” -- Ian Chipman, Booklist


by Chris "Elio" Eliopoulos
-- ISBN: 978-1-60309-068-1, Diamond code: APR11-1155
-- 48-page full-color hardcover graphic novel, 5" x 7.5"
-- $9.95 (US), All ages

"A mixture of Pablo Picasso and Cartoon Network... laden with eccentric charm." -- Eric Whitman, The Daily Blam!

"Elio consistently impresses me with his supercharged kid-friendly comics. His style is wholly distinct, and everything he does seems to explode with joy and pure fun." — John Martz, Drawn!

"2 scoops of silly, 5 cups of cute, and a bucket load of fun!" — Bob Boyle, creator of Nick Jr.'s Wow! Wow! Wubbzy! and author of Hugo and the Really, Really, Really Long String

Nate Powell's ANY EMPIRE on sale today!

August 31, 2011 / More →

Image for Nate Powell's ANY EMPIRE on sale today!

The creator of Swallow Me Whole (Best Graphic Novel Eisner-winner) returns with a massive exploration of violence, childhood, and coming of age in a culture of war games. Don't miss it!

by Nate Powell
-- ISBN: 978-1-60309-077-3, Diamond code: MAY11-1196
-- 384-page hardcover graphic novel, 6.5" x 9.5"
-- $19.95 (US), Older teens (16+) and adults

"The most prodigiously talented graphic novelist of his generation. ... Powell's exceptional visual-storytelling gift transforms a potentially obvious antiwar parable into a ravishingly beautiful, emotionally resonant, thoughtful, and provocative work of art." -- Booklist (starred review)

"Any Empire by Nate Powell is everything a graphic novel should be, and few are." -- Larry Hama, author of GI Joe comics since 1982

"At times poignant, at at others surreal, Any Empire is an engaging, never preachy work about childhood, centering on those secret currents that define our youthful rivalries and the games we play." -- MTV Geek

"Powell's understanding of the way his characters live -- constantly feeling a little insecure about their position among their own peer group -- and his ability to convey their daydreams work together to express a truth about a world where violence erupts organically from a culture of macho gamesmanship and cheap plastic guns." -- Noel Murray, The AV Club

"We've all experienced the world's endless cycle of innocence shattered, and Powell renders it all in lovely chiaroscuro... he crafts memorable and heartfelt characters that linger in the mind and scar the heart." -- Under the Radar

"Like in his award-winning Swallow Me Whole, Nate Powell appears to deliver a naturalistic portrayal of young lives but the strange and symbolic, the interior lives, are never far away and seep between and within the panels... With Any Empire, he crafts a surprising, affecting, troubling graphic novel that haunts the mind." -- Paul Gravett, author of Graphic Novels: Stories to Change Your Life


August 31, 2011 / More →

Image for INFINITE KUNG FU tour dates with KAGAN MCLEOD!

Along with a bundle of convention apperances, Kagan McLeod will be traveling to these special INFINITE KUNG FU events across North America! Check for more details:

This Friday, Sept 2 in Toronto!
-- Revival Bar, 783 College St, Toronto, Ontario
-- 9pm - $5 or free with purchase of book
-- The Beguiling presents Infinite Kung Fu book signings, author Q&A, and a live DJ Duel from Hop Fu (DJ 1XL and DJ Excess) accompanying a screening of a classic Shaw Brothers film!

Saturday, October 1, at Strange Adventures!
-- 5262 Sackville St, Halifax, Nova Scotia

Saturday, November 19, at Danger Room Comics!
-- 201 W 4th Ave, Olympia, Washington
-- plus other Olympia events that weekend TBA!

Big thanks to The Beguiling, Strange Adventures, and Danger Room for their support of this incredible book.

Robert Venditti explores the politics of THE HOMELAND DIRECTIVE with ThinkProgress!

August 17, 2011 / More →

Image for Robert Venditti explores the politics of THE HOMELAND DIRECTIVE with ThinkProgress!

"The thing about progress is that you never know where it’s going to lead..." The Homeland Directive author Robert Venditti took time yesterday to talk politics with Alyssa Rosenberg at ThinkProgress! She calls it "an exceptionally good graphic novel for the moment," with "a sophisticated sense of how government works," then follows with thoughtful questions.

Check out the interview for a glimpse into Rob's complex goals in writing the book, its connections to real-life politicians & problems, and the paradoxical situation in which American government finds itself.

If you haven't read The Homeland Directive yet, pick it up today and see why it became a New York Times Bestseller!

LEAGUE: 1969 is the month's top seller -- plus interviews, reviews, & annotations!

August 5, 2011 / More →

Image for LEAGUE: 1969 is the month's top seller -- plus interviews, reviews, & annotations!

The psychedelic celebration continues for Alan Moore & Kevin O'Neill's new graphic novel, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Century: 1969!

First item: it's the bestselling graphic novel of the month! Our distributor Diamond reports that it's far and away the #1 book for July 2011.

Next item: Intrepid reporter Zack Smith at Newsarama has just concluded an epic 4-part interview with Alan Moore! Check out parts One, Two, Three, and Four -- all packed full of insight into the League, the 1960s, and everything under the sun.

If you can't get enough League and want to catch every single reference, hard-working fans have stepped up to provide detailed annotations: Jess Nevins, The Mindless Ones (one, two, three), Revolution SF, Newsarama.

And what are the critics saying? "Part fun fiction exercise, part straight up adventure story, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Century: 1969 is a flat-out fun book to read. Underneath all of the references and allusions is a very easy-to-follow story that has all of that other stuff built up all around it." says Chad Nevett at Comic Book Resources

"Easily one of the best of the year, from its acid-trip showdowns on the astral plane to its head-nods to The Beatles (er, I mean, The Rutles), Mick Jagger's literal satanic majesty, and the monochrome comedown of punk rock's nihilistic birth in the ensuing '70s." -- Scott Thill, Wired

Grab your copy today from your favorite retailer -- or even digitally through Comics+!

Jennifer Hayden's UNDERWIRE now available for pre-order!

August 3, 2011 / More →

Image for Jennifer Hayden's UNDERWIRE now available for pre-order!

Hey friends,

In the new Diamond PREVIEWS catalog we have a very special book: the Top Shelf debut of Jennifer Hayden! She's a marvelous artist with a larger-than-life writing voice, as her autobiographical webcomic UNDERWIRE has demonstrated. Now Jennifer presents the book collection of UNDERWIRE, collecting her very best stories together with brand-new pages.

We loved reading Jennifer's stories, and through them, exploring her world and meeting her family. Now we're delighted to welcome her to the Top Shelf family and share her with you all. Check the online preview and pre-order now!

UNDERWIRE by Jennifer Hayden
-- $9.95 (US)
-- ISBN 978-1-60309-076-6
-- Diamond order code: AUG11-1205
-- 80-page softcover graphic novel with french flaps, 6.5" x 8.5"

"Hayden's work reminds me of why I began drawing comics, and why I continue. They're comforting, straightforward and strongly connected to life." -- Gabrielle Bell, author of LUCKY and CECIL AND JORDAN IN NEW YORK

"Underwire explores the funny, and often absurd, aspects of being a lady. Cheers to the artist for spotlighting female characters... and, hopefully, getting more women psyched about comics." -- Whitney Matheson, USA TODAY

"With a busy black-and-white palette of comforting cartoon grit, Hayden recalls Robert and Aline Crumb in this offkey anthem to misfit domesticity." -- Adam McGovern, COMIC CRITIQUE

Sometimes you just gotta pick yourself up by your brastraps.

UNDERWIRE collects the wise and witty autobiographical comics of an captivating new voice: Jennifer Hayden, cartoonist and politically incorrect mother of two. She may not have all the answers, but she's not gonna let that stop her from enjoying the prime of her life -- her forties!

Since its internet debut at, UNDERWIRE has attracted praise for its sharp tongue, enchanting style, and warm wisdom. These everyday observations -- about womanhood, parenthood, growing up, and rocking out -- add up to something not only funny, but also quite profound. After a few stories, you might even feel like a member of the family.

Now, for the first time in print, Top Shelf presents twenty-two stories from the beloved webcomic, plus seventeen new pages of comics and art created exclusively for this collection.

THE HOMELAND DIRECTIVE is a New York Times Bestseller!

August 1, 2011 / More →

Image for THE HOMELAND DIRECTIVE is a New York Times Bestseller!

Break out the champagne: it's a hat trick for writer Robert Venditti! Following The Surrogates and the graphic novel adaptation of Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, he's landed once again on the Graphic Books section of the New York Times Bestseller list -- and this time without even the help of a big-budget film!

Featuring jaw-dropping artwork from Mike Huddleston, The Homeland Directive is now in stores everywhere -- including a digital version for iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch through the Comics+ app! For details and a six-page preview, click here. Grab it today and see why The Comics Journal calls it "one of the most beautifully illustrated original graphic novels in recent memory," while Library Journal says it "demands edge-of-your-seat attention while raising serious questions about terrorism, personal privacy, and government responsibility."

Congratulations to Rob and Mike for this very well deserved honor!

Swing into the Sixties with THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN, in stores everywhere TODAY!

July 27, 2011 / More →

Image for Swing into the Sixties with THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN, in stores everywhere TODAY!

Yes, it's LEAGUE Day once again! After a blistering sell-out launch at last weekend's Comic-Con in San Diego, the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen's latest adventure (Century: 1969) is now available in stores everywhere. Alan Moore and Kevin O'Neill will leave your head spinning and your brain fried in this tale of psychedelic gangsters, Satanic pop stars, and the perils of immortality.

With perfect timing, two lengthy interviews with Alan have just gone live for your reading pleasure: first with Subhajit Banerjee in The Guardian, then with Scott Thill in Wired. You'll learn how the League's latest adventures connect to 60s touchstones like The Prisoner and Michael Moorcock, how Alan and Kevin dealt with the first League book set in their own era, and Alan's views on everything from the end of flower power to the future of culture in the digital age. Don't miss both interviews, and pick up the new League wherever books & comics are sold!

New BLANKETS, KUNG FU, ANY EMPIRE, HOMELAND, & LEAGUE 1969 -- Top Shelf's Comic-Con is HUGE!

July 18, 2011 / More →

Image for New BLANKETS, KUNG FU, ANY EMPIRE, HOMELAND, & LEAGUE 1969 -- Top Shelf's Comic-Con is HUGE!

We always make a splash at San Diego Comic-Con -- it's the biggest show of the year -- but honestly, with so many incredible artists and such important new books debuting, PLUS our first books launching on the iPad, this year might be our most jam-packed convention ever! We hope you'll come to see us, July 20-24, at the Top Shelf Booth (#1721) -- and everybody can check out our digital books through Comics+!

Tons of top artists signing at booth #1721!

For five exhilarating days, we'll be cramming together more talent than you'd think could fit in one room, let alone one convention booth! Get ready to meet over a dozen of our greatest authors:

-- Craig Thompson (Blankets deluxe edition)
-- Kagan McLeod (Infinite Kung Fu)
-- Nate Powell (Any Empire)
-- Robert Venditti (The Homeland Directive)
-- Ray Friesen (Pirate Penguin vs Ninja Chicken)
-- Andy Runton (Owly)
-- James Kochalka (Johnny Boo) and family!
-- Jeffrey Brown (Incredible Change Bots Two)
-- Jeff Lemire (Essex County)
-- JD Arnold & Rich Koslowski (BB Wolf & the 3 LPs)
-- Eric Skillman (Liar's Kiss)
-- Matt Kindt (Super Spy)
-- plus your crew: Chris Staros, Leigh Walton, and our new ebook expert, Chris Ross!

Seven amazing books hot off the press for a Comic-Con debut!

-- BLANKETS (new hardcover edition)

Finally, don't forget to come by the official Top Shelf panel at Comic-Con, Saturday July 23 at 4:30 in room 8! We'll have Q&A with the Top Shelf family of authors, plus tons of sneak peeks at what's coming next from us!

Top Shelf's Award-Winning Catalog Debuts in Comics+ from iVerse at SDCC

July 18, 2011 / More →

Image for Top Shelf's Award-Winning Catalog Debuts in Comics+ from iVerse at SDCC

Top Shelf Productions joins iVerse Media for digital product launch.

San Diego, CA-18 July 2011 – One of the most diverse and highly-regarded publishers in the world of comics, Top Shelf Productions, is expanding into the digital market. iVerse Media is proud to announce the release of 70+ digital graphic novels from Top Shelf, available today for iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch through the Comics+ app.

The first wave of titles includes work from top-selling and award-winning creators such as Andy Runton, Robert Venditti, Nate Powell, Jeff Lemire, Jeffrey Brown, James Kochalka, Renee French, Alex Robinson, Matt Kindt, and many more.

“We are incredibly proud to be releasing this first wave of Top Shelf titles at Comic-Con this year,” said iVerse Media CEO Michael Murphey. “Top Shelf really showcases the art of comics, and we’re excited to be the first to take this journey with them into the digital space.”

The launch titles from Top Shelf include such hits as Owly, The Homeland Directive, Any Empire, Swallow Me Whole, Essex County, Incredible Change-Bots, Johnny Boo, and Too Cool to Be Forgotten. With books spanning every age group and every genre (comedy, drama, action, memoir, fantasy, science fiction, even art books), there's sure to be something for every reader. Following this initial wave, many more titles from Top Shelf’s rich catalog will be released over the coming weeks and months.

"At Top Shelf, we're dedicated to telling stories that people connect with; reader-friendly comics with subtext and heart, each presented with a distinctive visual style," explained Top Shelf publisher Chris Staros. "Now with the iVerse digital launch, it'll be easier than ever to discover the amazing work our authors are doing, and maybe even find yourself a new favorite."

Top Shelf and iVerse are breaking new ground -- of the major English-language literary/art-comics publishers, Top Shelf is the first to offer its graphic novels for the iOS platform. And with prices ranging from $0.99 to $14.99, they hope to welcome plenty of new readers.

Titles are available now in the Comics+ Application for iOS. For more information visit:

A Very Kochalka Comic-Con!

July 18, 2011 / More →

Image for A Very Kochalka Comic-Con!

James Kochalka is a living legend: indie comics hero, diary comic pioneer, webcomics maestro, musical superstar, and more. His work (including American Elf, Johnny Boo, Dragon Puncher, and more) even earned him the title of Cartoonist Laureate of the state of Vermont! But did you know that his whole family are superstars? Now's your chance to find out, because they're all coming to San Diego!

Come by the Top Shelf booth (#1721) to meet the whole Kochalka family -- James, Amy, Eli, and Oliver! They're the stars of American Elf and Dragon Puncher, plus the kids are precocious young cartoonists themselves. The family will be signing a special print created by James just for this show!