Short Stories 1990-1996
Soundtrack collects the best of Jessica Abel's self-published Artbabe series, one of the most exciting comic books to emerge in the late-1990s. Prior to joining the Fantagraphics line in 1997, Abel self-published five issues of Artbabe. The first four were self-xeroxed efforts, and led to a prestigious Xeric Grant in 1996, enabling her to publish a more professionally-packaged fifth issue. Though little-seen by her fans, it was this self-published series that led to an offer from Fantagraphics and her current success, and this volume presents the best of these five comic books, as well as other short strips, to a larger audience for the first time. Abel's stories are peppered with hipsters, fashion, and trendy locales — all of which have contributed to her considerable appeal — but don't let the generational trappings fool you. Her intuitive ear for dialogue and characterization have made Artbabe a hit amongst people of all ages, especially women. Jane magazine reports, "You'll like it. We promise." Abel's Fantagraphics series as well as her Xeric-financed self-published issue led to an honored Harvey Award for "Best New Talent" in 1997. Soundtrack, however, proves that Abel was a prodigious talent well before 1997.
"This 110-page book from Fantagraphics collects seven years of work from the grossly talented and punk-hearted Jessica Abel. Rarely can you separate the art from the writing and have them both stand strongly on their own, and together it's like a tantric orgasm." – Giant Robot
"Abel's intuitive artistic ability is hard to ignore." – Chicago Magazine