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Author Topic:   First in Space (graphic novel)
Robert Pearlman

Posts: 27327
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 03-14-2007 02:37 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Oni Press release via HobbySpace
Oni Races Into "Space"

This April, Oni Press will join the space race by releasing the all new original graphic novel First In Space by talented newcomer James Vining, winner of a 2006 Xeric Award. Set in the early 1960s and extensively researched, First In Space tells the true adventures of Ham, America's first chimpanzee launched into space by NASA.

"This was a story I was determined to tell," explains James Vining. "Regardless of whether or not it ever found a publisher, I was going to make it happen. It took a while, but I finished the graphic novel and had just barely started to show it around. I was fortunate enough to be recognized by the Xeric Foundation at the same time Oni approached me about publishing it. It was pretty amazing to have those two things happen at about the same time "especially considering this was my first graphic novel."

"We were excited when we first received samples of Vining's work," said editor in chief James Lucas Jones. "His storytelling is amazing and we really felt that this story needed to be told. Ham paved the way for the first human flight into space, and this story is recognition of his amazing feat."

"James' work on First In Space was so good that I knew immediately that this was a story I'd be proud to publish," added managing editor Randal Jarrell. "The artwork is perfectly suited to the subject, and Ham's story, particularly as Vining has told it, is the best sort of historical fiction, truthful and full of heart."

In First In Space, Ham is paired with his human handler to undergo his training for the space flight. Smart and quick, Ham quickly outpaces his fellow chimpanzees, but nearly misses his flight because his fondness for banana pellets gets in the way of weight restrictions.

"First In Space is not only a fun and heartwarming adventure, but it also takes a serious look at the use of animals in government safety tests, an examination that's important to our history and particularly to our future," said Jarrell. "But it's also about monkeys in space! What could be better than that?"

First In Space is James Vining's debut as a solo cartoonist. Having been discharged in 2005 following four years of service in the US Coast Guard, he spent several months working and researching First In Space, and his dedication to the story shows in every panel.

The First In Space original graphic novel ships April 25, 2007 and retails for $9.95. It's a 96 page 6x9 trade paperback, with black and white interiors and a full color cover. The ISBN is 978-1-932664-64-5, and the Diamond order code is FEB07 3672.

For sample pages, see Comic Book Resources.

Order from


Posts: 296
From: Cleveland, OH USA
Registered: Aug 2006

posted 03-14-2007 09:02 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for space4u   Click Here to Email space4u     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Here's the author/illustrator's website. When you scroll through his other drawings, note an interesting collection of landing on the moon from the Apollo era!

Chris Dubbs

Posts: 143
From: Edinboro, PA USA
Registered: Nov 2004

posted 03-14-2007 09:41 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Chris Dubbs   Click Here to Email Chris Dubbs     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This looks like a fun publication, and it is always nice to see animals get their due. But "First" in space? I think I hear a few barks of protest.


Posts: 3093
From: San Diego
Registered: Feb 2002

posted 03-14-2007 02:15 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
He's making a monkey out of Laika!


Posts: 1181
From: Huntsville, AL, USA
Registered: Jun 2003

posted 05-02-2007 09:25 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for DavidH   Click Here to Email DavidH     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This hits shelves today, so be sure to visit your friendly neighborhood comic book store.

(Or, better yet, wait until Saturday, which is Free Comic Book Day, and pick up one of the many free titles that will be available.)

All These Worlds Space Blog |
"America's challenge of today has forged man's destiny of tomorrow." - Commander Eugene Cernan, Apollo 17 Mission, 11 December 1972


Posts: 296
From: Cleveland, OH USA
Registered: Aug 2006

posted 05-18-2007 06:00 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for space4u   Click Here to Email space4u     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Here's a link to an article about "First in Space" for those interested.

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