Best of the Year – Richard’s Propaganda List

Published On January 11, 2010 | By Richard Bruton | Best of the Year 2009, Comics, Reviews

God, I’ve read an awful lot of comics this year and yet again, it’s been a year filled with some wonderful new discoveries and some old favourites. I’m not even going to try to explain why the things I’ve chosen are on here, instead I’ll post a link to my review and a pull quote. As for the order of these things, I’m not going to put them in any sort of order, except for Logicomix, which was definitely my favourite thing of the year.

Okay, enough lead-in, here we go, the best of 2009……..

Logicomix-Apostolos-Doxiadis Chloe Noonan monster hunter Marc Ellerby

Logicomix (review): My book of the year.
“There really is no simple way of defining Logicomix, except by virtue of it’s absolute brilliance.”

Mark Ellerby‘s Chloe Noonan (review issue 1, 2) & Ellerbisms (review):
“For god’s sake, somebody give Marc Ellerby a book deal for Chloe Noonan and Ellerbisms. His work’s fresh, exciting and looks fantastic. He’s talented, young, and according to the women in the Bruton household, rather good looking. I should hate him but I can’t – not when his comics are this good.”

bookofsolomon second_thoughs_cover_lg

Harker (review Volume 1) by Roger Gibson and Vince Danks:
“Like some bloke says on the back of the book: Harker’s a great detective thriller with intriguing story, wonderful art, cracking dialogue and moments of laugh out loud comedy … an absolute triumph of a comic. This first book really does have everything you could ever want in great genre writing. I’ve recommended it since the start. I’m certainly not stopping now.”

Second Thoughts (review)
“Second Thoughts is a slim volume and a quick read. At least the first time round it is. But the second time, knowing the ending, you take more time to get more of the clues, more of the visual trickery. And the third time you do the same. And the fourth time. Or at least that’s what I did. Four times in one night I read Second Thoughts, each time coming away amazed and enthralled.”

parkercover Phonogram Singles Club issue 1 FPI blog

Parker (review)
A must for anyone with a penchant for Chandler-esque heroes and hard boiled storytelling.

Phonogram The Singles Club (review issue 1, 2)
I’ve never read anything in comics that manages to thoroughly express that sheer joy of being young and beautiful as this comic does, nor anything that captures the ecstatic moment when the music becomes too much and you just can’t help but give yourself over to it and get up and dance. That’s something that should be nigh on impossible to put to words. But Gillen does it so very well.

BTN-cover1 photographer-cover

Badger: Then & Now (review)
Howard Hardiman really delights in his characters misery – and god help me, so do I. And so will you. It’s a lovely, wonderful, terribly, wonderfully sad book.

The Photographer (review)
I really hope that in years to come The Photographer is mentioned alongside Joe Sacco’s Palestine and Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis as a major work of comic journalism and a staggering achievement.

Glister-cover humbrstone-cover

Glister (Haunted Teapot, The House Hunt)
The good news is that Glister: The Haunted  Teapot is but the first in four (so far) Glister books from Walker Books. I’ll be here for as many as Andi and Walker decide to give us. I hope you will be as well.

How To Date A Girl In Ten Days (review)
Try it and I guarantee you’ll recognise everything here as things that have happened in your life. And you’ll be glad that someone as talented as Humberstone managed to get them down on paper better than you ever did.

GN6546 Largo-Winch-FPI

Proper Go Well High (review)
Reading Proper Go Well High, just like Trains Are … Mint takes you out of yourself, wraps you up in the world that East is walking through, makes you work hard at deciphering the meaning of the art and overall is an incredibly rewarding and strangely uplifting experience.

Largo Winch (review vol 1)
Largo Winch is wonderfully good, old fashioned escapism. But it’s also very cleverly done, a thriller with a brain. Perfect stuff. It’s my favourite of all the Cinebook releases I’ve seen so far

Finally, the two best books for children I’ve read all year (I could also have included Andi Watson’s Glister here, but although that’s primarily aimed at young girls, it’s also perfectly lovely to read as an adult tale)

Luke Cover GN8694

Luke On The Loose (review)
Luke On The Loose is an absolute masterpiece of a children’s book, one of those that whips by at frenetic pace but leaves you with a huge grin and a great feeling that lasts long after bedtime

Morris The Mankiest Monster (review)
Morris The Mankiest Monster – a worthy successor to Raymond Briggs’ Fungus The Bogeyman, packed with fun, a great rhyming reader to be enjoyed again and again, beautifully drawn and guaranteed to have your young ones asking for more

Now, you may have realised that there are several notable releases completely missing from the list. This is because I just never got around to them. Again, not enough hours to go around. So neither Asterios Polyp or Crumb’s Genesis still sit on my shelf waiting for me to get around to. From what I’ve read about both they may well have made the list. Likewise the Beanworld reissues and the first new Beanworld book for many, many years would have made it on there, if only I’d have had chance to read them again. It’s a promise to myself that sometime this coming year I’m actually going to sit down and enjoy all of these books.

Okay, that’s 2009 done. Bring on 2010.

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About The Author

Richard Bruton
- Started in comics retail aged 16 at Nostalgia & Comics, Birmingham. Now located in Yorkshire, he's written for the Forbidden Planet International Blog since 2007. Specialising in UK Comics and All-Ages comics, Richard's day job in a primary school allowed him to build the best children's graphic novel library in the country.