Tag Archives: howard cruse

Review: Web of Lives Collection 1

The world has both progressed and regressed in many ways over the last few decades. The fight for visibility and acceptance seems like an almost eternal struggle for so many. Members of the LGBTQ community know this fight all too well. The choice to either live out loud or in silence carries consequences for them both and can weigh heavily either way. They must risk the fear of their lives, of un-acceptance by loved ones, the dismissal by co-workers, and outright hate by some on society. The decision in how open to be can be impacted be all of that and more

As more of the maligned masses starts to grab streams of the spotlight that the world has denied until recently, their stories have started to enter the public conscience. These stories show the world that it is more than binary. It’s a kaleidoscope of love and choices. Though progress is a slowly bending arc, these struggles remain. In some ways they’re less harsh than in the past they remain. Some of these stories are told masterfully in Kristen P. EnosWeb Of Lives: The Collection Volume 1

In “Berserker,” a family moves into a new neighborhood, where a young girl, Casey who just so happens to be a tomboy, starts having feelings for a neighbor, Cynthia. As they grow older, both of them become closer, as Casey hides her feelings from Cindy, but a terrible ailment has rendered Casey unconscious, leaving her future uncertain. Casey comes out of a coma, still  not realizing why she passed out . Meanwhile, her parents and friends try to convince her to join the LGBTQ club, somewhere she can meet like personalities. Also, at a medical facility in New York, it seems as though some strange characters are very interested in Casey, for her physical traits. As she gets more comfortable in her skin, a boy picks on her for being gay resulting in retaliation. In “The Good Child,” Yoshiko, the daughter of a powerful Yakuza lord Master Watanabe, is shaken to the core as the family’s matriarch passes away. The Yakuza lord remarries someone close to him, his mistress while at the same time Yoshiko, is betrothed to an older man, one whose demure demeanor gives Yoshiko pause. As her wedding day approaches she feels a change in the wind. With her wedding day, her father ‘s enemies are the gate, as chaos ensues with an assault on the family mansion. Yoshiko soon realizes that everything is not what it seems and the attack was deliberate and was planned from the inside. Soon she finds out that her husband’s business partners are shadier than she originally perceived. She soon finds every man in her life, her husband and brother, have either has underestimated or undermined her, as such disregard has no place.

Overall, two very different stories which both show the struggles women both gay and straight. The stories are action packed, relatable,  and always intriguing. The art by creative team is gorgeous. Altogether, a a great book which shows how great a writer Kristen P. Enos is.

Story: Kristin P. Enos Art: Song Ye, Pablo Romero, and Howard Cruse
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Young Bottoms in Love Digital Edition Benefits LGBT Comics Nonprofit

Northwest Press

Download the PDF review copy of Young Bottoms in Love now!Northwest Press has teamed up with Tim Fish to release a digital edition of Young Bottoms in Love, a collection of the popular gay romance webcomic series from PopImage.com. This 270-page anthology has work from award-winning comics professionals as well as top amateur talent, and features contributions from Howard Cruse, Paige Braddock, Tim Fish and more.

Proceeds from the sale of Young Bottoms in Love will benefit Prism Comics, the nonprofit organization that supports LGBT comics, creators and readers. Among the programs that Prism offers is the annual Queer Press Grant, for which the organization recently announced an extended application deadline of October 1st. The grant recipient will be announced at the Alternative Press Expo in San Francisco the weekend of October 13th and 14th.

Young Bottoms in Love is 270 pages, currently retails for $9.99 and is published by Northwest Press, which publishes graphic novels and comics collections by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender comics creators. The book is available through Apple’s iTunes or iBooks and is intended for reading on the iPad, though it can also be viewed on iPod touches and iPhones.

Digital Edition of Howard Cruse’s “From Headrack to Claude” Available, Includes Documentary

Northwest Press

Click to download cover image from From Headrack to ClaudeHoward Cruse’s From Headrack to Claude available on iBooks from Northwest Press

Collects underground cartoonist’s gay comic strips from 1969 to 2008, includes half-hour documentary feature

Northwest Press has just released its third digital-only graphic novel through Apple’s iBooks: an edition of Howard Cruse’s From Headrack to Claude designed specifically for the iPad. Cruse was the first editor of the classic Gay Comix and author of the seminal gay comic strip Wendel which ran in The Advocate. He also created the award-winning civil-rights-era coming out story Stuck Rubber Baby, recently re-released by DC’s Vertigo imprint. From Headrack to Claude collects Cruse’s other gay-themed comic strips from throughout his career, and includes numerous pages of backstory and additional illustrations.

Unlike 2009’s print edition, this digital version includes color strips, photos and illustrations and is 12 pages longer. This edition also includes Sean Wheeler’s half-hour documentary feature, I Must Be Important ’Cause I’m in a Documentary!! which tells the story of Cruse’s life and career.

“Howard Cruse is kind of a hero of mine,” says Northwest Press publisher Charles “Zan” Christensen. “When I dipped my toe back into comics after college, one of the first books I stumbled across was The Complete Wendel. It was a revelation that there was a whole world of cartooning by and for adults that dealt with real-world issues and showcased the lives of people I could relate to as a gay man. Howard and the other pioneers in queer cartooning paved the way for the vibrant LGBT comics community that we enjoy today, and it is fascinating to follow their journey through this book.”

“Bringing my gay life into my comics was hugely important to my development as a cartoonist,” says Cruse, “so it made sense for me to compile all of my gay stuff into a single book back in 2009. Seeing From Headrack to Claude re-imagined three years later for iPad adds fresh excitement to a project that was already personally fullfilling, since an eBook can reach readers in far-flung places so much faster and more effortlessly than a self-published, print-on-demand book can. Plus, my color comics can even be in color again!”

From Headrack to Claude is available exclusively on the iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch through iBooks. Readers can download a free preview before purchasing the book.