Weekly Top 10

Thanks to Jerianne Thompson of Zine World for these Revenge of Print stamps!

1. Paying For It: A Comic Strip Memoir About Being a John by Chester Brown (D&Q) $24.95 – Chester Brown did a pretty great thing with this book, one of the most anticipated graphic novels pretty much ever. I think it’s about time more johns speak out publicly about their involvement and investment in sex economies. In Paying For It, Brown presents an especially crisp libertarian-flavor case in favor of decriminalized sex work. There’s also sort of a nice journey of personal growth in here too where, through the course of the book, he goes from completely trashing and dismissing the idea of “romantic love” to finding his own weird and wonderful variation of it (thanks to his john-dom).Here in Chicago, aldermen are currently trying to get batshit-crazy anti-prostitution laws on the books, so, you know, speaking up about the destigmatizing and decriminalizing of sex work truly matters. Brown’s frank and shame-free stance is loud and clear and his cartooning style is built primarily around building his case. At times, the dialogue gets so loaded it’s almost polemic but the characters are all fleshed out enough that it sways more toward Fun Home-style self-analytical autobio. Also, there’s this tricky issue where he draws all the women he pays with the same faceless anonymity. Initially, this seemed troublesome, but I think that here Brown is showing us physical anonymity while letting the dialogue convey some of the subtler levels of involvement that make each of his encounters unique. When I think of great writing and art by sex workers, johns are often afforded a similar style of anonymity, making Brown’s approach just seem like common courtesy from the other side of the coin. -EF

2.The Believer #80 May 11 $8.00

3. Diamond Comics #6 (Floating World) $4.00

4. Kus #5 Baltic Comics Magazine

5. Rigor Mortis vol 4 by Davida Gypsy Breier $3.50 – The classic horror review zine with MAD drawing chops! Much like Robin Bougie’s Cinema Sewer, Rigor Mortis is oozing outrageous content out every orifice. Built on an open artery of monster flick reviews with special features on sexual subversion and queer subtext in early horror cinema, this is like sweetened condensed homebrew Fangoria . -EF

6. Ultraviolet Catastrophe by Andrea Walls $5.00 – “Ultraviolet Catastrophe is a chapbook excerpted from a larger work-in-progress, The Black Body Curve, a full-length collection of poetry in which the author considers the events of May 13, 1985, the day the city of Philadelphia, under the leadership of its first Black Mayor, dropped a C-4 explosive into the roof of 6221 Osage Avenue, a row-home known to be occupied by men, women and children, ultimately killing 11 people including 5 children and destroying 61 homes leaving 250 citizens homeless. The author tries to answer the question, how did this happen? How did issues of race, rhetoric and geography collide with the city’s history to inform the catastrophic conflict with the MOVE Organization and the residents of Osage Avenue?”

7. Boneshaker Magazine #4 $9.00

8. Boys Club #4 by Matt Furie (Pigeon Press) $6.00

9. Monocle vol 5 #43 May 11 $10.00

10. List #12: Goodbye Baltimore $3.00