Gene Luen Yang Announces New Boxers and Saints Graphic Novels

One of my favorite graphic novelists ever, Gene Yuen Lang, has just announced exclusively with Wired.com his latest project Boxers and Saints. You can check out a 10-page excerpt of it over at Wired — suhweet!

Now, Yang announces his latest graphic novel project, Boxers & Saints, exclusively at Wired.com. Due out this September from First Second Books, the slipcased edition will contain two volumes that explore the stories of two peasants during the Boxer Rebellion in China who struggle with issues of identity during a time in Chinese history when many were asked to choose between their country and their faith. While Boxers tells the story of a peasant who joins the Rebellion, Saints follows the spiritual journey of a Chinese woman who converts to Catholicism.

I just appreciate what an amazing story-teller/artist he is. And reading more about how he started, inspires me to get my ass off the couch…or something to that effect 🙂

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Cursed Pirate Girl by Jeremy Bastian Is Frackin’ Awesome

Cursed Pirate Girl cover by Jeremy Bastian

My latest read and most amazing discovery? Cursed Pirate Girl by Jeremy Bastian.

This epic graphic novel has been around for the past several years — how could I not have known about it before?!?! It wasn’t until the other weekend when I was noodling around the comic book shop that I learned about Cursed Pirate Girl. It was one of the featured books on display.

I picked it up because it looked amazing. A badass girl with an eye patch on the cover? Fierce. And then, I opened the book…

Holy shit.

The illustrations are frackin’ phenomenal.

It’s so very rare to see good black and white artwork in graphic novels. Usually, the balance is so far off where there’s too much black or too much white that it hurts the eyes. But here, I couldn’t get enough of Bastian’s work. His inking and line work technique are exceptional — creating tones of gray even in the night scenes where black is the primary color.

My eyes were overwhelmed in a good way. I wanted to see every single detail — I still do (I’m going to re-read the book but re-read the artwork this time).

crazy,  magical illustrations & textured, frayed paper

Flipping through the pages, you feel as though you’re being transported to another world — think The NeverEnding Story / Alice in Wonderland as drawn by Sir John Tenniel / Peter Pan. The story itself is so well told. A parrot in a fish? Yeah, I believe that. Why wouldn’t I? Of course! Brilliant.

And what I appreciated most? That the Cursed Pirate Girl is so fearless. She can kick your ass if she wanted to. She found out she was missing her eye (I won’t reveal how) and what does she do? She just finds something to cover it. No biggie.

If I had a daughter, this would be tops for bedtime story/required reading.

I am so blown away.

Thank you, Jeremy Bastian for the inspiration and magic!

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End O’ December Reading List

Can you believe that I still haven’t gotten to these treasures yet? Oiy, what am I doing?!

Anyhow, there are only 5 or so days left in the year…1 or 2 if you believe the Mayan end-of-the-world prediction. So with what little time that’s left either way, I’m hoping that I can power through these:

What’s the rush? The fact that there are a couple Derek Kirk Kim books I want to get at 🙂

So, here’s to getting lost and inspired, especially with the nutshit craziness of the holidays — I mean, I <3 Christmas, but I also hate it at the same time. I mean, Christmas would be perfect if it were exactly like Thanksgiving, but still with the mistletoe, tree, Christmas movie specials, and music…oh, and snow.

*sigh*

If only I ruled the world.

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Lucky Peach Magazine, Issue 5: Chinatown

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It was a fun-filled weekend and I acquired a LOT of new material to work with. You hang out with a bunch of guys and you’re bound to get “inspired.” With that being said, the usual comic slated for today will be arriving tomorrow instead.
BUT, I do have an amazing find to share with you all — Lucky Peach magazine!
I tell you that it was fate that brought this magazine to me. Thanks to the Yume Wo Katare ramen line, Mr. Lee and I were given the chance to noodle around Porter Square Books, an indie bookshop I’d never visited before (what?!). I spotted the Chinatown cover and started leafing through the sucker. So, basically…

Lucky Peach is a quarterly journal of food and writing. Each issue focuses on a single theme, and explores that theme through essays, art, photography, and recipes.

This particular issue was all about Chinese food.
It’s got some seriously awesome articles and isn’t your typical food periodical — it’s fun and isn’t overly focused on recipes, entertaining, gadget reviews and/or how-to do something food-related. It’s more about the places, back-stories, and people behind the food. Those are the parts that interest me the most. Plus, I already know that I’m a shiyat cook — I generally just roast vegetables, make scrambled eggs, and re-heat things. That is my repertoire.
My favorite articles so far from the issue?
  • photo compilation of how chow mein looks around the world. Like, Mozambique serves chow mein? Really? Really. I love stuff like this. When Mr. Lee and I were in the Bahamas a few years back, we wanted to see what Bahamian Chinese fast food was like. FYI it sucked.
  • behind-the-scenes look into the Asian produce world — from the farmers to how it gets into the supermarkets and then sold.
  • a rant on walnut prawns — which, by the way, I <3 eating as filthy and as disgusting it may be prepared.
I can’t wait to read about other food in upcoming issues. At $12 a pop, it is a bit steep, but considering that I don’t subscribe to anything else, I’ll afford meself this small luxury.
Check it out if you can — it’s published by McSweeney’s, a publishing company based in San Francisco, CA.
PS. Does anyone else hate themselves after eating at Yume Wo Katare? I like my pork fat but jeezus kriste.
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