Graphic novels are best defined as book-length comics. They are often a single storyline, flowing from first page to last, and sometimes they are collections of short stories. Graphic novels, like the comic books they parallel, rely to a high degree on visual art. This art is usually combined with text, most often presented in a series of rectangular panels.
Comics and the graphic novel evolved from the “funny papers,” enabling a longer story to be told than in the limited space granted by newspaper formats. The name notwithstanding, not all comics are funny. Many emphasize broader themes that feature complex drama and well-developed characterization.
Among purists the term graphic novel has become contentious. Since the 1970s, experts in the field have ventured to define comics as an “academic discipline,” worthy of specialization in publishing. A debate over the term “graphic novel” may challenge this definition. To most readers, the word “comic” refers to a publication meant for children, usually available at newsstands or in comic book stores. The term “graphic novel “usually refers to a longer storyline, usually meant for a more mature audience. This format may be published in either paperback or hardback, and be found online, or in bookstores. The graphic novel usually contains more serious themes and more complex artwork than the classic comic book.
These distinctions can become somewhat confusing, because comics come in a variety of shapes and formats, and appeal to (more…)
Forensic detective Lincoln Rhyme is back with his most harrowing case yet. A businessman is snatched from an Upper East Side street in broad daylight. A miniature hangman’s noose is left at the scene. A nine-year-old girl is the only witness to the crime. With a crime scene this puzzling, forensic expertise of the highest order is absolutely essential. Lincoln Rhyme and Amelia Sachs are called in to investigate.
Soon the case takes a stranger turn: a recording surfaces of the victim being slowly hanged, his desperate gasps the backdrop to an eerie piece of music.
Despite their best efforts, the suspect gets away. So when a similar kidnapping occurs on a dusty road outside Naples, Italy, Rhyme and Sachs don’t hesitate to rejoin the hunt.
But the search is now a complex case of international cooperation and not all those involved may be who they seem. Sachs and Rhyme find themselves playing a dangerous game, with lives all across the globe hanging in the balance.
Book Collecting 101: A Tour of the Publishing Houses
John of VJ Books provides a tour of the five major English language publishing houses and their various imprints.
There seems to be a lot of interest about book publishing. As you explore your hobby, you wonder what publisher came from where or what book comes from which publisher. Publishing of modern fiction goes back to the early 19th century. In the last several decades most of the books, while there are hundreds and hundreds of publishers, are produced by the Big Six publishers. That was the case until 2012 when two of the major publishers, Penguin Putnam and Random House, merged and are now controlling a lion’s share of publishing in the English language. So let’s start looking at them. (more…)