Community and Acceptance: A Chicon 8 Report

I spent my final day in Chicago post-Chicon 8 wandering along Navy Pier, lunching, reading lazily under the shade while occasionally peeking out towards the city’s magnificent skyline.  Chicon 8, as with any Worldcon, had been a whirl of activity. I sat on three panels, all of which went well.  I attended parties and connected […]

Recent Comics Inspired by the Beatles

Lucy in the Sky Writer Kiara Brinkman and illustrator Sean Chiki craft the early history of the Fab Four . . . not that quartet, but the all-girl Strawberry Jam.  Lucy Sutcliffe’s life has not been running smoothly.  A seventh grader, she feels increasingly separated from her friends, Vanessa Takahashi and Rupa Khanna.  Vanessa’s discovered […]

The Tomb of Dracula #54: “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas”

Horror-themed holiday stories, whether filmed or penned, are nothing new, but clearly, I’m obsessed with 1970s Marvel horror comics and can’t resist talking about them.  I own all available omnibus collections, and I’ve written multiple articles where I mention how during the early 1970s the Comics Code Authority loosened its restrictions against horror comics, making […]

Whisper Down the Lane by Clay McLeod Chapman

In 1983, seven teachers from the McMartin Preschool were alleged to have abused more than 100 children.  The case lasted seven years and cost $15 million, making it the longest and most expensive American legal proceeding ever, but no convictions occurred.  Bruna Calado, Henry Otgaar, Timothy J. Luke, and Sara Landström with The Inquisitive Mind […]

Five Classic Suicidology Texts

Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the United States.  It’s the second leading cause of death for those 15-24-years-old.  In 2019, the latest year for which we have data available, 47, 511 individuals completed suicide with firearms accounting for 23,941 of these.  The national suicide rate, again for 2019, was 13.9 per […]

It’s a Start

My childhood hobbies included watching cartoons and superhero shows, with a side of horror movies during weekends. When feeling energetic, I’d hit my oldest brother up for rides to Bob Sidebottom’s Comic Collector Shop where I’d stock up for what I was doing when not watching cartoons, superhero shows, or horror movies – reading comics. […]

Dark Shadows: The Comic Series

From 1968 to 1976, Gold Key Comics published Dark Shadows, a series based on the hit television show of the same name, but which focused more on the vampire Barnabas Collins, his werewolf cousin Quentin, and Angelique, the ghost-witch devising new tortures and trials for Barnabas, as if cursing him with vampirism hadn’t been enough.  […]

Dark Shadows: The Novels

On September 24, 2020, Hermes Press began re-releasing the initial Dark Shadows novels that originally appeared from 1966 to 1972.  Each will come out in enlarged formats more in line with contemporary paperbacks, but they’ll have the original cover art or photographs, and the archival paper bond.  As of this writing, twenty of the thirty-two […]

Five San Francisco Novels

I’m writing this article after reading the first three novels from Armistead Maupin’s Tales of the City series.  Clearly, Maupin loves San Francisco.  He leads readers through the City’s varied neighborhoods like a romantic obsessive showing off memories and souvenirs related to his hyper-adored paramour.  New arrival Mary Ann Singleton moves into 28 Barbary Lane, […]

Tales of the City, The Musical

To celebrate Pride 2021, the American Conservatory Theater (ACT) streamed its production of Tales of the City, the Musical, based upon Armistead Maupin’s literary phenomenon of the same name.  I had no idea that this existed, but as a newly minted diehard fan of the novels I couldn’t wait to see how this would work, […]