Hasslein Blog: June 2017


Hasslein Blog

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Hasslein Publishing Releases New Book Exploring Comic Book Icon Red Sonja

 Matthew Stephen Sunrich's Drawn Swords: An Unauthorized 
Exploration of Red Sonja and the Artists Who Brought Her to Life 
features a special foreword by writer Nancy A. Collins.

NEW YORK, June 23, 2016—Since her debut in Marvel's Conan the Barbarian during the early years of the Bronze Age of Comics, Red Sonja has become the undisputed queen of sword and sorcery. She has hacked and slashed her way through more than 300 comic books to date—a number that continues to grow in the pages of Dynamite Entertainment's series.

Savage and beautiful, altruistic and deadly, Sonja, the flame-haired "She-Devil with a Sword," is a war-goddess in the tradition of Athena or the Valkyries—but though divinely blessed with supreme battlefield prowess, she is a flesh-and-blood woman. It is this dichotomy that makes Sonja the most redoubtable female of the Hyborian world.

In Hasslein Books' latest release, Drawn Swords: An Unauthorized Exploration of Red Sonja and the Artists Who Brought Her to Life, author Matthew Stephen Sunrich explores the character's adventures and how they relate to other comics, as well as novels, television programs, and films. Drawn Swords features a special foreword by Red Sonja: Vulture's Circle author Nancy A. Collins, a noted horror fiction writer widely praised for her Sonja Blue vampire novels, as well as her comic book work on Swamp Thing, Vampirella, and other titles.

This 322-page softcover book explores the character's adventures from Marvel and Dynamite, examining the work of the myriad artists whose pens and pencils gave her the breath of life—such as Neal Adams, Adriano Batista, Dan Brereton, Rich Buckler, John Buscema, Fritz Casas, Howard Chaykin, Frank Cho, Sergio Fernandez Davila, Walter Geovani, Dick Giordano, Homs, Pablo Marcos, Esteban Maroto, Mel Rubi, Barry Smith, Frank Thorne, and many others.

Drawn Swords: An Unauthorized Exploration of Red Sonja and the Artists Who Brought Her to Life is now available to order from Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, and CreateSpace. Click here for more information about this book, and here to download an excerpt.

Media requests: To obtain a review copy of Drawn Swords, or to arrange for an interview with author Matthew Stephen Sunrich, please email info@hassleinbooks.com.

About the Author
Matthew Stephen Sunrich has been a comic book, fantasy, and horror fan for as long as he can remember. After years of attempting to become a fiction writer, he directed his writing toward pop-culture analysis. He has contributed to two essay anthologies from Sequart—A Long Time Ago: Exploring the Star Wars Cinematic Universe and A Galaxy Far, Far Away: Exploring Star Wars Comics—and blogs about comics, fantasy, anime, and gaming at both Hasslein Books' blog and his own blog, Tomb of the Unknown Geek. Matt lives in Tallapoosa, Georgia, with his wife, two children, five cats, and eight hundred Dungeons & Dragons miniatures.

About Hasslein Books
Hasslein Books is a New York-based independent publisher of reference guides by geeks, for geeks. In addition to Drawn Swords, the company's line-up of unauthorized genre-based books includes titles about the Watchmen, Planet of the Apes, Back to the Future, Red Dwarf, and Doctor Who franchises, with future volumes slated to feature G.I. Joe, James Bond, and more. To stay informed regarding the company's projects, follow Hasslein Books on Facebook and Twitter, and at the Hasslein Blog.

Red Sonja©™ is the intellectual property of Luke D. Lieberman and Red Sonja LLC. No copyright infringement is intended or implied. Drawn Swords: An Unauthorized Exploration of Red Sonja and the Artists Who Brought Her to Life is a scholarly source-work that has not been licensed or authorized by any person or entity associated with Luke D. Lieberman or Red Sonja LLC.

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Monday, June 5, 2017

Comic Books: Writing or Art?

By Matthew Stephen Sunrich

Since at least the 1960s, there has been a lot of debate about which aspect of comic books is more important, writing or art. One could reasonably argue that both are indispensable, as the medium represents a marriage of the two, wherein neither is more important than the other, but it appears that many fans fall into one camp or the other.

When comics were a new thing during the 1940s, the quality of art varied wildly. Much of it wasn’t very good because it didn’t have to be. Many publishers would hire anyone who could get the job done in a hurry. Comics were considered kids’ stuff, and kids, after all, are hardly aesthetes. By the 1950s, however, the standards began to change. In the pages of Tales from the Crypt and Crime SuspenStories, for example, readers were treated to the sensational work of such luminaries as Graham Ingels, Jack Kamen, Johnny Craig, and Jack Davis, whose art made fans’ blood run cold with their macabre renderings.

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