Talisman: The Road of Trials #1-3

Original novel by Stephen King and Peter Straub
Adapted by Robin Furth
Art by Tony Shasteen
32 pages, color
Published by Del Rey Comics

I remember reading The Talisman back in the ’80s. One (or both) of my parents had read the book, and the hardcover sat on the entertainment center bookshelves in our family room. A good friend of mine in high school was a rabid Stephen King fan, and since we had a copy of King and Peter Straub’s novel in the house, I thought it was as good a book as any to start with. Because it’s been over 20 years since I’ve read the book, some of my memories are a little hazy, but I do recall liking the book. I’m also pretty sure that my memories of the book are still strong enough that I can safely say that the original novel was not quite as disjointed as this comic adaptation is shaping up to be.

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Starman #81

Written by James Robinson
Layouts by Fernando Dagnino
Finished art by Bill Sienkiewicz
32 pages, color
Published by DC Comics

I was a big fan of James Robinson’s Starman since day one (or should that be issue #0?); his collaborations with Tony Harris and Peter Snejbjerg produced a gorgeous, memorable run of stories that weren’t just about the title character, but his friends and family, as well as the setting of Opal City. When DC announced that a handful of cancelled titles would have one additional issue each in January 2010 as part of the Blackest Night crossover, I found myself worried. Because while some of Robinson’s work on Superman in the past year or two has been all right, I’ve been underwhelmed with Justice League: Cry for Justice and Justice League of America, with their wallowing in death and destruction. It hasn’t felt like the Robinson whose Starman was at the top of my reading pile every month. So it was with great hesitation that I sat down with Starman #81.

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All My Darling Daughters

By Fumi Yoshinaga
208 pages, black and white
Published by Viz

It’s nice to see some creators getting pushed by their publishers. I think that’s the case with Fumi Yoshinaga; her new series Ooku: The Inner Chambers began translation into English last year, and now Viz has brought out All My Darling Daughters, a one-off collection of five stories revolving around relationships. And while I enjoyed Ooku and Antique Bakery, I think that All My Darling Daughters is my favorite comic from Yoshinaga to date.

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New Reviews Return Next Week

Just a quick note to apologize for the lack of updates, recently. What I thought would be a short break for the holidays stretched into much more thanks to work, travel, and other obligations.

The good news is that new reviews should return starting on January 25th. I’d hoped to get this moving sooner than that, but I’d rather get up and running at full strength again. Thanks for your patience!