April 10, 2012

Earthbound Comics' LONGHUNTERS: A Review

One of the great advantages of being a comics blogger - besides getting complimentary electronic copies of books (like I did for this blog post), is that every once in awhile, I'll receive a book that I probably would not spend my own money on, but after reading it, want to not only purchase the next issue, but purchase back issues to "make amends" of a sort.

After checking out Earthbound Comics' The Longhunters # 3 (which was sent, along with links to issues 1 and 2, gratis for purposes of this blog post), I'm definitely going to have to continue to follow this book, and purchase back issues. It's an out-of-left-field surprise: a tale of explorers and hunters in early 19th-century America that is a pretty decent read, telling a variety of atmospheric, action-charged tales that deal with exploration - both physical and metaphysical.

Don't let the slightly Wolverine-esque cover by Cedric Nocon fool you - these are some tight, very well-drawn stories featuring Tom Snow, a man exploring the Midwest in the 1820s who gains the title "Sleepbringer". (One of the bonuses of Longhunters # 3 is an essay on the burial mounds in Missouri....a site which I never went to while I lived there, and now feel an obligation to check out). It's not quite a Western - Earthbound's press release calls it a "Frontier book"....but this is a book with a fresh, solid approach and concept, and feels like nothing I've ever read before.

(OK, maybe I caught an episode of Grizzly Adams when I was younger, but barely remember it). Art chores are handled well in his issue by Ruth Garcia ("Voices of the Dead") and Ben Ferrari ("Guilt Kills.") Plus, there's a variety of pin-ups and material from the books' former life as a graphic novel.

Make no mistake - there's pretty much no other book being published quite like Longhunters, and rightfully deserves a place on your comics reading list.

 All three issues are available for purchase via Indy Planet and Drive Thru Comics.

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