Welcome to the Austin Books & Comics New Reader Guide! We’re here to introduce some of our favorite books that you may not already know about, and maybe even help you find your next favorite comic series!
Starting in 2015, Aftershock Comics has been the new publisher for creator-owned comics by some of the best writers and artists today. With a huge variety of styles and genres, Aftershock is sure to be a major player on the comics scene.
All titles are available at the store, and if not we will be happy to special order them for you!
A war between heroes and villains has been raging for years with more and more of the general populations caught in the middle. In the midst of this conflict, a third threat appears: the Alters. They appear all around the country with new and amazing powers, and are met with fear and distrust. This series centers around a young transgender woman known as Chalice, and her struggles of transitioning not only to her new gender identity, but also to her new superhero identity.
Creators: Paul Jenkins (w), Leila Leiz (a)
For fans of: Young Avengers, LGBTQ+ protagonists
In a small Midwestern town, a man covered in horrific scars appears. The townsfolk aren’t sure what to make of him, until he takes on a local gang of racist arms dealers and the corrupt law enforcement. Seen as a hero, they’re shocked to realize that he’s not there to save the town, but to take it over.
Creators: Brian Azzarello (w), Juan Doe (a)
Genres: crime, drama, horror
For fans of: Southern Bastards, True Detective, gritty and brutal crime stories
One day, the animals were able to think for themselves and communicate with people. They then started to take their revenge. A young girl and her dog escape from New York City to get to San Francisco in order to find the one person who can possibly save them.
Creators: Marguerite Bennett (w), Rafael de Latorre (a)
Genres: black comedy, adventure, action, horror
For fans of: Rover Red Charlie, Preacher, road trip stories
It’s night. You’re at home, alone. Suddenly there’s a knock at the door. It’s a pair of kids, asking to use your phone. They look a little odd, but you let them in. As soon as they enter, you feel an overwhelming sense of dread. Then you notice their eyes: solid black. You desperately want to escape, but it’s too late, they have you.
Creators: Joe Pruett (w), Szymon Kudranski (a)
For fans of: psychological horror, urban legends
Middle-aged shlub Chris Vargas has a secret: he can turn into teen superhero Captain Kid! This series asks the question: if you could be a teenager again, would you?
Creators: Mark Waid & Tom Peyer (w), Wilfredo Torres (a)
Genres: superhero, comedy
For fans of: meta/self-aware humor
Inspired by true events, Dreaming Eagles recounts the story of the Tuskegee airmen, a squadron of African-American fighter pilots during World War II. These brave pilots faced huge odds not only in the skies above wartorn Europe, but also in the face of racism at home.
Creators: Garth Ennis (w), Simon Coleby (a)
Genres: war, action, drama
For fans of: Battlefields, war stories, historical drama
In the late Victorian era, a pair of forbidden lovers discover a terrifying power that transforms them into monstrous creatures. Using this power, they create a new life for themselves while seeking vengeance on those that have wronged them.
Creators: Marguerite Bennett (w), Ariela Kristantina (a)
Genres: horror, romance, drama
For fans of: body horror, Victorian romance, LGBTQ+ protagonists
The world’s greatest con artists set out for a massive score: the powers of the gods themselves. Using their skills, wits, and a little luck, they’ll try to pull off the biggest heist of all time.
Creators: Ray Fawkes (w), Marco Failla (a)
Genres: action, thriller
For fans of: heist stories, modern mythology
At the intergalactic population hub known as the Transfer, Trevor Carter is a detective stretched too thin. Between a doofus partner, incompetent superiors, and too many responsibilities, Trevor decides to clone himself in order to better perform his duties. However, the cloning process goes awry and instead of one clone, he ends up with dozens. Each issue introduces a different clone, each with his own identity, including put-upon desk worker Number Two, stoner hippie Number Three, and half-baked legal genius Number Five.
Creators: Paul Jenkins (w), Andy Clarke (a)
Genres: sci-fi, action, comedy
For fans of: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Red Dwarf, British humor
In the 1890s, a young Theodore Roosevelt gathers a group of remarkable individuals to uncover and stop a force that threatens all mankind. With sharpshooter Annie Oakley, magician Harry Houdini, champion boxer Jack Johnson, and scientist Thomas Edison, Roosevelt and his Rough Riders fight a secret war against an alien threat.
Creators: Adam Glass (w), Patrick Olliffe (a)
Genres: action, adventure, sci-fi
For fans of: The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, alternate/secret history, period sci-fi
Former celebrity psychic Ray Pilgrim was famous for being able to see through the eyes of killers who were terrorizing London. He fell out of the public eye after being accused of the same crimes he was helping to solve. Now his daughter is attempting to uncover the truth about a secret group of child abusers that include some of Britain’s most powerful men. Desperate to expose the group and protect his daughter, Pilgrim goes down the same dark path he had long since left.
Creators: David Hine (w), Alberto Ponticelli (a)
Genres: horror, thriller
For fans of: psychological horror
In a world full of giant monsters, outlaw Strayer will fight them, for a fee. He ends up teamed up with Mala, a young girl with magical powers that have not been seen in ages. They travel the world fighting monsters, attempting to uncover the conspiracy behind the sinister origins of the giant beasts terrorizing the populace.
Creators: Justin Jordan (w), Juan Gedeon (a)
Genres: action, sci-fi
For fans of: Shadow of the Colossus, mismatched buddy action movies, giant monster fights
19 year old Dru Dragowski absolutely believes that she is destined for great things. Desperate to gain the superpowers in order to achieve this destiny, she tries recreating the origins of her favorite superheroes, including hiring a hobo to mug her parents and taking a bag of ants into an X-ray machine. She ends up discovering a massive threat to the earth, and that she may well end up fulfilling her heroic destiny after all.
Creators: Amanda Conner & Jimmy Palmiotti (w), Rafael de Latorre (a)
Genres: superhero, action, comedy
For fans of: Kick-Ass, Ms. Marvel, Faith, sendups/parodies of superhero tropes
Martin Monroe is a time-travelling assassin known as the Revisionist, tasked with repairing the broken timeline. He is forced to team with his estranged father and face his sordid history in order to save the future, but can he overcome his past and live with his decisions to do so?
Creators: Frank Barbiere (w), Garry Brown (a)
Genres: action, sci-fi
For fans of: time travel, mind-bending sci-fi