There are a few authors out there that are so great, I'll buy they're next book without giving it a second thought. Doug TenNapel is one of them. Doug released his latest graphic novel "Flink" this past summer, and there have been so few copies and such poor distribution of the copies that its taken until today for mine to show up.
The story is sweet and straight-forward (Doug is great at developing great stories that suck you in right away and leave you craving more). "Its about a boy and his bigoot", says Doug. And it is. It's a story about a boy and his bigfoot, and it shows a refreshing new breed of bigfoot and the nastiest looking bear since "The Great Outdoors".
The artwork is amazing. I love Doug's work because he has such a great understanding of the media he works with: he knows how to use it, when to use it, and why to use it.
He published Flink (as well as Black Cherry, Iron West, Tommysaurus Rex, Earthboy Jacobus and Creature Tech) with Image comics and its done his work a great injustice. Nearly every printing of his books has had major problems: bindings that allow pages to fall out with one turn, misprints, misspelled text on the back cover, pages printed into the abyss of the binding, and poor handling of the distribution of his books and information on them. They've even pushed back his publication dates several times to no fault of his own!
As far as I know he could go with any publisher he wants, so I'm not sure why he's still with Image.
Anyway, the story is nice and its sad to see the niceness held back by printing and publishing problems again. And again. I think I'll post this up on their site.
For my fellow typography nerds out there: The 'k' in "Flink" is delicious! The right foot has only a half stroke and it resembles the way Doug draws legs and feet for some of his characters.
If you like what you see you can either borrow my copy of one of his books or get one of your own. I think "Iron West" is a great starter. Its a quick read and packed with all sorts of things to love in a book. You can get a copy here for only $7.
The artwork I've posted is stuff from Doug's books "Creature Tech" and "Solomon Fix", which are both a treat to read.