Top Shelf, an imprint of IDW, have got quite a slate of books and comics lined up for 2017 that will no doubt serve as future bright spots throughout the year, but in the shorter term, let’s look at what you’ll find in shops from Top Shelf this February, March, and April.
Gumballs #2 ( #1 is already available, #2 ships in April)
First up we have Gumballs #2. Issue #1 launched a new single-issue series coming out of Portland, Oregon by Erin Nations. We have a bright, pop art style handling real life situations through short stories in a humorous vein. The first issue of Gumballs has already arrived in shops, so keep a look out for it. The second issue lands in April.
Official Description: Pop in your quarters and see what pops out of GUMBALLS — a brand new one-man anthology comic from Portland cartoonist Erin Nations! His bright, candy-colored palette and crisp linework pop off the page, while his stories reflect a fascination with humanity in all its diverse foibles — hinting at one of his earliest creative influences, Matt Groening’s The Simpsons.
In GUMBALLS #2, The buzzed-about series returns! In his second issue, Erin’s ready to do some shots… of testosterone, that is, injected weekly for Hormone Replacement Therapy. The result? “I feel like I’m going through menopause and puberty at the same time.” Plus: an all-new assortment of workplace antics, memories of Erin’s triplet childhood, imaginative personal ads, animal observations, and much more! — a 32-page full-color comic book (6.625″ x 9.5”)
GUMBALLS tips its hat to the classic alt-comic tradition of Eightball, Optic Nerve, and Box Office Poison, but speaks with a delightfully fresh voice for the modern age. — a 32-page full-color comic book (6.625″ x 9.5”)
Box Office Poison Color Comics #2 ( #1 is already available, #2 is currently in print, and #3 arrives in March)
Alex Robinson’s original comic Box Office Poison has returned to comics fans in full color format, courtesy Pat N. Lewis’ coloring work. Lodged firmly in the Underground comix vein, this comic also contains new author commentary sections. The first issue of Box Office Poison Color Comics has already landed in comic shops, and issues #2 has recently arrived in print. Issue #3 arrives in March.
Official Description: The story of Sherman, Dorothy, Ed, Stephen, Jane, and Mr. Flavor as you’ve never seen it before: IN FULL COLOR! Alex Robinson’s masterpiece of dreary jobs, comic books, love, sex, messy apartments, girlfriends (and the lack thereof), undisclosed pasts, and crusty old professionals remains one of the most delightful and whimsical comic stories—and with colorist Pat N. Lewis’ fantastic color work, BOP is ready to return to comic stands! — A 28-page full-color comic book with new author commentary.
In Box Office Poison #2: Sherman’s frustration with his job grows and grows… while the story of Jane and Stephen’s relationship is revealed!
March Trilogy Slipcase Set (Already available)
Though this has been popping up as available during the holiday season, the lovely slipcase edition of March is now widely available in shops. Containing all three volumes of the epic real-life story of Senator John Lewis, there’s never been a better time to show your support of this award-winning work and experience March.
Official Description: The award-winning, #1 New York Times bestselling trilogy is complete! Celebrate with this commemorative set containing all three volumes of March in a stunning new slipcase designed by Nate Powell and Chris Ross and colored by José Villarrubia. — a slipcased set of March: Book One, March: Book Two, & March: Book Three.
Chester 5000 Book 2 (Shipping in February)
Jess Fink is back with a new volume of Chester 5000, a hardcover sequel set in the budding silent film era and presented in lush grayscale. Following on from the Victorian period of the first volume, Chester 5000 Book 2 dives deeper into industrial developments and rising militarization as society inches toward the 20th century.
Official Description: 1889: an age of industrial revolution and sexual frustration. Isabelle is a lonely orphan, reprimanded at every turn by her strict matron. George is an inventor on the cusp of a brilliant discovery. Together they find love, but in an age of violent mechanization and military secrets, can their passion survive?
After the smash success of CHESTER 5000’s first volume (the tale of a Victorian woman and her robot lover), beloved webcartoonist Jess Fink returns with another triumphant story of boundary-breaking love, sex, and technology. Discover the origins of your favorite characters along with all-new thrills. All the drama and adventure of the silent film era is here, enlivened with modern whimsy and erotic charm. — a 184-page hardcover graphic novel (with greyscale/black & white interiors), 6.5” X 7.5”, ADULTS ONLY (18+)
Her Bark & Her Bite (Shipping in April)
Scottish illustrator James Albon brings us his debut graphic novel, Her Bark & Her Bite in full color softcover, following the life of a young female artist who falls in with a society darling in the big city, only for his obsession with his pug to destroy her peace of mind. How will she cope? I think we can all imagine how hard it is to compete with a pug, so this is a book that we all need to read.
Official Description: Soon after young artist Rebecca arrives in the big city, she stumbles headlong into the arms of the charismatic Victor. When they fall madly in love, she’s thrown into his socialite world of glamorous parties, devoted fans, and layabout debutantes. The people, the art, and the acclaim are exhilarating — until Victor’s affections start to wander to his new pug, Princess. With her new boyfriend slipping away before her eyes, Rebecca’s jealousy and fear threaten to upend everything. Can she hold onto the man she loves? Does she even really want to?
Award-winning Scottish illustrator James Albon makes his graphic novel debut with an intoxicating tale of passion, prestige, and panic. — an 80-page full-color softcover graphic novel with French flaps, 5.8” x 8.3” (148mm x 210mm)
For more about Top Shelf’s 2017 releases, you can check out their catalogue right here.