Publisher: Conundrum Press
Though this is his first book, you may recognize CCS graduate Dakota McFadzean’s work from Best American Comics 2012. In a standout year featuring new work from giants like Chris Ware, Jaime Hernandez and Chester Brown, McFadzean’s 32-page minicomic “Leave Luck to Heaven” was also selected as the best of the best — and as this collection shows, it is just one of many highlights in an inventive and evolving body of work.
Other Stories dabbles in gags like “Invincible Baby,” but its best and longest pieces lean toward magical realism. In these stories, the monk-like console gamers of “Leave Luck” shine alongside other characters whose lives are just a bit unreal. In “Everything You Can Think of Is True,” a boy with the power of tangible thought creates a mother to comfort him, while “Skeletons” and Shuster Award-winner “Ghost Rabbit” negotiate a relationship between childhood and phantoms of death. Other Stories collects early work from a creator with exciting ideas and the potential for many strong books to come. Whether you’re a fan of short stories or graphic storytelling (or both!), this volume earns its spot in your library.
~ Kate Henning