NBM Publishing, founded in 1976, has since risen to become the second largest indie comics press in the country. The company has sold more than $3 million in yearly retail through more than 150 graphic novels. A general interest publisher, NBM believes that comics can have the same reach as any great novel or film, and has built its brand through its knowledge of the general book trade.
This week we’re shipping a book I fell in love with.
Oh, it’s hard love, ’cause it’s about a thorny issue but it’s done so sensitively and the art rendered so beautifully in simple comic form, I just thought we have to see this in the States.
“Why I Killed Peter”, by Alfred and Olivier Ka, is an autobiographical book where the writer (Ka) had a mentor, a role model, a man he looked up to fondly, a priest. A very liberal priest who did not proselytize. Then, one day, he asked something of the kid that was improper. We’ve seen the news, a lot of this happening in many churches here. Well here’s the living of it.
BUT, before you go “Oh, God, I can’t read that”, what’s remarkable about this book is how the author does NOT get up on a soap box, or beat his breast looking for your pity or especially excoriate the priest as total evil. As a kid, the incident did not happen again, he continued to look up to him and continued to go to his summer camp for years. It’s absolutely remarkable that we can actually almost understand the priest’s point of view as ill-advised as it was.
However as he grew up the resentment and anger built up in him and he finally after many years gathers the courage to visit him with his friend, the artist (Alfred) of this graphic novel, and confront him, only to find a shriveled old little man crushed by his anger.
It’s just incredibly insightful and remarkably carried off. Another book NBM and its ComicsLit imprint likes to publish that moves this artform we all love forward.
See it here with previews: http://www.nbmpub.com/
Terry Nantier is a founding publisher of NBM Publishing. You can read more about the company at nbmpub.com.