For the first month of 2007 Frank Miller's 300 has been, by far, the best-selling non-manga graphic novel in American bookstores continuing its Q4 2006 surge that saw it race to the #6 spot in sales among American releases for the entire year.  With Warner Bros. mounting a major advertising campaign for Zack Snyder's 300 movie (see '300 to Get Imax Release'), Dark Horse has an ambitious program that includes two 50K printings to make sure that copies of the 300 graphic novel are available for both the run-up to, and the aftermath of, the film's opening -- but Dark Horse's plans to push its Frank Miller graphic novel backlist are not limited to the movie-driven sales of 300.


Miller's growing name recognition with a wider audience led to solid sales of his Sin City graphic novels in 2006, long after the release of the Sin City movie.  Dark Horse is planning on cashing in on Miller's increasing visibility with a reprint of his excellent Hardboiled graphic novel (written by Miller and illustrated by Geof Darrow) in April.  Darrow also drew Miller's homage to Astro Boy and the classic Japanese monster films, Big Guy and Rusty the Robot, which Dark Horse is reprinting in May. 


The most ambitious portion of Dark Horse's plan involves the release of the final chapter of Miller and Watchmen artist Dave Gibbons' Martha Washington saga, which will first be published in periodical form before its inclusion in a Martha Washington Omnibus, which will collect all three previous Martha Washington graphic novels and present the complete saga in one volume.  Dark Horse hopes to have the Martha Washington Omnibus out by the end of the year, and comic shop retailers faced with a growing number of graphic novel releases and a finite amount of shelf space certainly benefit from having key backlist graphic novels combined into one volume editions such as this.