Progressive, Eclectic, Boutique: New Comic Book Publisher Clover Press Reveals Their Upcoming Titles
by Gary Catig
Clover Press recently entered the comics scene but don’t think they’re newbies to the industry. Publisher, Ted Adams, and Art Director, Robbie Robbins, have a wealth of experience from their days at WildStorm, IDW and other stops. The new publishing company is hoping to make an impact in the business and they live by a three-word motto: Progressive, Eclectic and Boutique.
They are progressive in their content both politically and socially but also in their distribution process. They want to do more than use the Previews method that local comic shops use and try to sell directly to consumers. They want to be eclectic in not only their titles but also the formats they use. Finally, they consider themselves boutique focusing on two to three titles a month so they can concentrate on finding an audience for their books and provide appropriate marketing and PR.
At this year’s San Diego Comic Fest, Adams and Robbins held a panel revealing the different products consumers can expect from them. Clover Press has a graphic novella line that is an upgrade quality wise from a typical TPB and is at an inviting price point. The covers are printed on stock that feel more like a hardcover. Books coming out this month are Kevin Eastman’s Totally Twisted Tales, The Spirit and Pirates: Book One.
Totally Twisted Tales is a collection of three full length stories from Eastman and Simon Bisley. The Spirit serves as a good intro to Will Eisner’s work that includes nine stories, five of which feature new coloring from Laura Martin. Pirates collects stories from the classic golden age comic.
Arriving later from the graphic novella line are a pair of Steve Niles titles. The first is The Grievling with October Faction partner, Damien Worm, while the other is The Possessed with art from Gyula Nemeth. Both are supernatural revenge stories. To round out the line are a rerelease of The Complete Wraith, Michael T. Gilbert’s 70’s homage to The Spirit, and Voting is Your Superpower, a collection of classic comics from yore about voting.
Speaking of cartoon strip collections, Clover will also publish, We Should Improve Society Somewhat and Tom the Dancing Bug: Into the Trumpverse. The former is a collection of cartoons by the Nib’s managing editor, Matt Bors. The latter features over 200 cartoons covering the political landscape during Trumps first term in office.
They have one original graphic novel entitled, Teaching ArtFully. Creator, Meghan Parker, made her thesis as an OGN and this is her story teaching art to children.
There are also several art books on the way. Pete Von Sholly has two of them including History of Monsters, which is an exploration of almost every monster created, and Lovecraft Illustrated, which features an illustration from each of Lovecraft’s stories.
In addition, there are The Fantastic Illustrations of Tim Truman, the first collection of his art, Travelers, a collection of Aron Wiesnfeld’s latest paintings, and The Art of Popeye, which features images of the iconic character from both alternative, underground and modern comic artists.
They are even developing prose novels. Dracula of Transylvania, by Ricardo Delgado, is a modern retelling of the titular character. Rattle of Bones & Other Terrifying Tales is a collection of short stories from Conan creator, Robert E. Howard, and features artwork from Gabriel Rodriguez of Locke and Key fame.
Finally, they have Theodore Roosevelt, Diablo House and Kabumpo in Oz coming out tentatively, this fall. Roosevelt is written by Adams and contains short anecdotes about the larger than life president including the time he wrestled a Sumo wrestler at The White House and how he continued giving a speech after being shot. Diablo House is Adams’ creator owned anthology prose series that takes inspiration from Tales from the Crypt. Ruth Plumly Thompson wrote several books in the Oz series and Clover previously published her first, The Royal Book of Oz, with artwork from Sarah Richards. They are hoping to republish all of Thompson’s Oz stories and Kabumpo is the next in line.