Monday, September 06, 2010

Chapters Thoughts

Sorry for the late post - just got back from Toronto. It was a nice trip, and I got to check out the local Chapters (The Canadian version of Borders or Barnes and Noble). A few quick observations:
-The floppies actually had some shelf space in the magazine section instead of being exiled to the spinner rack where they would never be seen or touched, and there was a fairly diverse selection of different publishers. Whether this is because comics are doing well or the magazine business is just that bad is more difficult to discern.
-The "graphic novel" section in where the adult books are sold is now almost the same size as the manga section, and it's starting to look like the books are all of a uniform size and shape, like the manga. There's still not much logical order, as I went through it alphabetically first by title then by creator and still found huge mismatches, but it's progress.
- Now, I didn't get the time to check out the younger readers sections of the store, so I'm going to assume (probably safely) that there is a seperate manga section for younger readers, while American/European publishers lack a solid presence there (with the possible exception of BOOM! and whoever else has some Disney material published).
-That said - is it just me or are the Marvel/DC collections ugly,? Most of them have black spines with barely readable titles and almost no logos. Looking at them from a distance, it would be hard to tell any one series apart from another.
-The exception to this? The DC Showcase Presents stuff - colorful enough to stand out, with a clear title and logo and even a little picture of the main character. Shining beakons in a black sea.
-This one's the store's fault, but just the same - if you're going to put one of the titles so that it's cover faces out to the general public, can I recommend that it's not one of the Marvel Zombies books? Thanks.


mrjl said...

I have no problem reading the title of the book on the spines.

Yes, it would be difficult to read them from a distance, but given their size anything would be difficult to read.

Anonymous said...

I think that, on standard-sized TPBs, the thickness of the spine makes it difficult to put in a logo and a portrait. That's there the Showcases (and the Essentials, if Marvel could be made to bother) have a definite advantage: space.

TraveLibrarian said...

I work part time in a Barnes and Noble, which I think is similar to Chapters. We have a Children's "Comics and Manga" section, which basically just displays graphic novels suitable for folks aged six to 12. Both "American" and manga series are shelved there, with "American" titles more in evidence.

There are some series by The Big Two, but many independent authors and publishers are now creating graphic novels for kids. There's a bunch of good stuff there, from volumes of Bone, by Jeff Smith, to Knights of the Kitchen Table and adaptations of Greek myths.

The stuff sells, too -- we're constantly restocking, and the section always has space for face-out displays.