This attractive square-format hardcover is published by La Mano, which is itself a project of Sally's. It contains six pieces finely rendered in a solid ink brush style that doesn't spare the ink. Ranging from eight to nineteen pages in length, these stories are threaded together by a shared theme, which is fully articulated by the volume's title. All the tales are populated by characters moving through a world where continual lapsing into error is the one and only way of life. Success is not an option here. Every chance is blown. Every step forward is a leap back. Progress is an illusion. No one gets better. It's just a matter of when and how it all goes bad.
This book, at the time of its publication only the second ever collection by DIY legend John Porcellino, exploits the advantages avaliable only to someone with a long career. Starting with some pages from some of the earliest issues, the material in Diary of a Mosquito Abatement Man spans a full decade, and it shows: you can witness the evolution of Porcellino's graphic style, from the early rough work all the way through to his highly refined Zen/minimalist style of the present. And then there's the story itself, full of the wistful resignation to life's exigencies that is the Porcellino trademark.
This 40 page comic book is printed entirely in red ink on newsprint bound into a textured cardstock cover. While it is indeed a comic book about how to make comics, it's likely that it is not what you think. How to Make Comics is more about how to prepare your self and soul for the arduous journey that comics making is. It is filled with full-page single images with text that engage the literal, figurative and metaphorical modes to provide a guide for The Way of Comics Making. Check it out.