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Mystery

A Feline Detective. In Space.

Leon is the creation of author Pati Nagle, first appearing in her science fiction novel Pet Noir from Book View Cafe (check it out over at Amazon). Now Kymera Press have adapted Pet Noir as a full-color comic book series with art by by Anna G, Laurie Foster, and Liezl Buenaventura. “Feline investigator Leon has opposable thumbs, the ability to talk, and is possibly the most dangerous cat in the galaxy. Indentured to the Security department of Gamma Station until he’s worked off the cost of his ‘creation’, Leon alternates between harassing his human partner and roommate Devin and fighting sleazy criminals, yet he still finds time to flirt with the lovely Leila, an exotic Burmese. Will he win her heart, and more importantly, will he win his freedom?” The first issue is available now.

image c. 2015 Book View Cafe

image c. 2015 Book View Cafe

He’ll Sniff Out the Clues

Well this is perhaps something different… Fables: The Wolf Among Us is a comic book based on a video game based on a comic book. It’s . “Even before the first issue of Fables, there were stories to be told, shadowy avenues to explore, and lives hanging in the balance! Bigby Wolf has seen plenty in his time as Sheriff of Fabletown…but nothing can prepare him for this… It all starts with a simple domestic disturbance. But when Bigby learns that his old nemesis, the Woodsman who has an axe to grind, is part of the scene, things go downhill fast. And how will Bigby and Snow White keep their heads long enough to crack the case when they get caught up in a grisly murder mystery? Vertigo’s first-ever digital-first series, Fables: The Wolf Among Us is a gripping adaptation and expansion of the smash-hit video game from Telltale Games, and an official prequel to Bill Willingham’s bestselling Fables! Written by Fables alum Matthew Sturges (Jack of Fables) and Dave Justus (House of Mystery), with art by Stephen Sadowski (JSA), Shawn McManus (Fables / Fairest), and Travis Moore (JSA All Stars)!” You might also recall that the game was nominated for an Ursa Major Award. The first full-color issue of the comic book series comes to stores this January.

image c. 2014 Vertigo

image c. 2014 Vertigo

The Master’s Early Work

Discotek Media have released all 26 episodes of the original anime series Sherlock Hound in a special 6-DVD box set. “Written and Directed by Hayao Miyazaki (Spirited Away) during his time at Japans largest animation studio, TMS. Before he went on to create Totoro and Studio Ghibli, Miyazaki captured a whole generation of children’s imaginations with his retelling of the Sherlock Holmes mysteries using a loveable cast of canines. Sherlock Hound, released as either Famous Detective Holmes or Detective Holmes in Japan, is an anime based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes series where all the characters are depicted as anthropomorphic animals, the majority dogs, though Holmes is a fox and his enemy Professor Moriarty is a wolf. The show featured regular appearances of Jules Verne steampunk-style technology, adding a 19th-century science-fiction atmosphere to the series.” You can order the new box set over at Discotek’s web site.

image c. 2014 Discotek Media

image c. 2014 Discotek Media

Maybe Someday a New Chick Flick?

Sorry, sorry… It’s called The Chicken Squad, a series of light-hearted mystery stories written by Doreen Cronin and illustrated by Kevin Cornell.  “Meet the Chicken Squad: Dirt, Sugar, Poppy, and Sweetie. These chicks are not your typical barnyard puffs of fluff, and they are not about to spend their days pecking chicken feed and chasing bugs. No sir, they’re too busy solving mysteries and fighting crime.” In The Chicken Squad: The First Misadventure, “… when Squirrel comes barreling into the chicken coop, the chicks know they’re about to get a case. But with his poor knowledge of shapes (‘Big’ is not a shape, Squirrel!) and utter fear of whatever it is that’s out there, the panicky Squirrel is NO HELP. Good thing these chicks are professionals”. Following all this? Check out this new book series from Atheneum Books for Young Readers over at Amazon, in one of several formats.

[Hey, don’t forget! You only have one week left to vote for the Ursa Major Awards — the Hugo Awards ™ of anthropomorphic fandom! Visit www.ursamajorawards.org to find out how.]

Image c. 2014 Atheneum Press

Image c. 2014 Atheneum Books

Moo-Steries

Author Dawn Kravagna has released Murderous Critters, her first collection of Cattle Capers ™ mystery stories on-line at Smashwords. “Murderious Critters is a trio of outrageously funny mystery short stories, the first collection in a series featuring the zany comic animal characters from the world of Cattle Capers ™. A killer magician, rogue dinosaur skeletons, and roaming gunslingers are no match for bovine Master Detective Adam Steer and his goofy sidekick Crazy Cal.” The stories here include “The Magician’s Trick”, “The Dino Sore Mystery”, and “The Moontana Murders”, as well as the extra short story “Whopper Fish”.

image c. 2013 Dawn Kravagna

Michael. Elephant. Detective.

There’s no way we could describe the new graphic novel District 14 any better than the publisher, Humanoids Inc., did in Previews magalog: “Follow Michael the elephant as he arrives to the city known as District 14, a labyrinthine metropolis where humans, animals and aliens all co-exist.  A unique anthropomorphic mystery with an intricate plot and a fantastic cast of characters, this incredible French series is finally making its way across the Atlantic.” It’s written by Pierre Gabus and illustrated in black & white by Romuald Reutimann, and it’s coming out in hardcover this January.

image c. 2012 Humanoids Inc

Bigfoot: Private Eye

Okay here’s a different take on things: Mr. Foot, aka Bigfoot, is a sasquatch private eye. Having received a letter from his long-lost brother Yeti, Mr. Foot enlists the aid of his friend The Jersey Devil to fly him to the arctic — only to find that Yeti has been beheaded. Now the reluctant Mr. Foot must bring together his old gang of cryptozoological friends — including Nessie and the Megaladon (or giant shark) and others — to find the killer and bring them to justice. It’s all there in Footprints, a new black & white comic book series from 215 Ink. It’s written by Joey Esposito (the comic book editor for IGN Publishing) and illustrated by Jonathan Moore (FUBAR). Alternative Magazine On Line has an extended preview of the comic up on their web site.

image c. 2011 Jonathan Moore

More Chickens, and an Old Dog

We really can’t top this description (from Amazon) for The Trouble with Chickens: A J.J. Tully Mystery, so we’ll not try. “J.J. Tully is a former search-and rescue dog who is trying to enjoy his retirement after years of performing daring missions saving lives. So he’s not terribly impressed when two chicks named Dirt and Sugar (who look like popcorn on legs) and their chicken mom show up demanding his help to track down their missing siblings. Driven by the promise of a cheeseburger, J.J. begins to track down clues. Is Vince the Funnel hiding something? Are there dark forces at work—or is J.J. not smelling the evidence that’s right in front of him?  Bestselling author Doreen Cronin uses her deadpan humor to pitch-perfect effect in her first novel for young readers. Heavily illustrated with black-and-white artwork from Kevin Cornell, this new series is destined to become a classic.” It’s in hardcover from Balzer & Bray. The Amazon entry also features a video ad that Doreen Cronin put together for the book.

image c. 2011 Balzer & Bray

Sam and Friends Meet Dracula!

Sam is no ordinary sheep-dog: He has a nose for sniffing out the clues to a mystery. And Jennie is no ordinary girl, because she can read Sam’s thoughts! Together with their friend Beth, the trio seek out the answers to mysterious goings-on in their seemingly-sleepy little town of  Woodford. Their first assignment: Finding out if their weird new neighbor is in fact a vampire! It’s all in the first Sam and Friends Mystery graphic novel, coming this January from writer Mary Labatt and illustrator Jo Rioux. This black & white trade paperback is published by Kids Can Press.