John Harris Dunning and Michael Kennedy, SelfMadeHero, £16.99


The story goes like this. Adam Whistler directs pop videos and commercials for a living, but he’s desperate to break into the movies Or he was until he has a minor accident on a beach holiday. The accident derails his career, his relationships and his life. Which leaves him open to the influence of a mysterious woman with a head full of secrets.

John Harris Dunning and Michael Kennedy’s cool, considered psychological thriller comes trailing all sorts of echoes of Hitchcock and Patricia Highsmith (as well as throwing in references to Die Hard and Grant Morrison’s stint on Doom Patrol for good measure). All the more impressive then that it lives up to those hefty influences.

What’s most striking is the self-confidence of the storytelling. Its creators don’t feel the need to shout. This is a story told in a compelling whisper.

The Ghost Script

Jules Feiffer, WW Norton, £21.99


At 89 Jules Feiffer could be forgiven for putting his feet up, but the veteran Pulitzer prize-winning cartoonist has been busy in recent years on his Kill My Mother trilogy and this, the final volume, is a testament to the man’s feisty energy.

This is a vibrant, speedy and, yes, at times angry, account of the McCarthy era in Hollywood circa 1953, a mix-up of private eyes, pinko writers, Union goons and right-wing loons. It barrels along at pace, with Feiffer bringing a scratchy, manic intensity to his art. What is striking – to its creator as much as to its readers if his foreword is to be believed – is how much this stuff still burns; the callous opportunism of the McCarthy era and the venality of so many involved.

The only slight niggle is the pay-off punchline here which slightly undermines what has gone before. But would that we all will have this much petrol and vinegar in the tank when we’re on the cusp of our tenth decade.

Weegee Serial Photographer

Max De Radigues and Wauter Mannaert, Conundrum Press, £14.99


One final slice of noir. This graphic biopic of the great New York tabloid photographer Weegee is a satisfyingly peppery thing that has the same salacious eye for sex and violence as the man iwhose life it documents.

Weegee was an ambulance chaser who spends his nights listening into the police radio hoping to grab a photograph of the latest shooting or car crash. But he yearned for better things. As he says at one point: “I want to be the best photographer in New York, not the best corpse photographer in the Lower East Side!”

De Radigues and Mannaert follow him from the streets of New York to the Hollywood hills. Its worth taking the journey with him.

Feast of Fields

Sean Karemaker, Conundrum Press, £14.99


Sean Karemaker’s graphic memoir of his mother’s life in a Danish orphanage is distinctive not only for the compassion he brings to the subject, but for the originality of his visual approach. Telling the story in mostly consecutive double page spreads he moves the narrative through space and time across the page. The result is both striking and distinctive, a genuinely intriguing blueprint for the architecture of the comic strip.


Matt Fitch, Chris Baker and Mike Collins, SelfMadeHero, £15.99


A British retelling of the greatest of American adventures, the moon landing. This hardcover take in comic book form combines the talents of artist Mike Collins (Spider-Man, Batman and many more) with authors Matt Fitch and Chris Baker, co-founders of Dead Canary Comics. The storytelling is slick and straightforward, but not above the odd lurch into the surreal. What makes it work is the attention to historical detail and the way it embeds the Apollo story into a wider narrative about America in the second half of the twentieth century.