Diamond Comic Distributors, which currently represents Marvel and a number of other comic publishers to the book trade, has just reached an agreement with El Capitan Books, which names Diamond as the exclusive distributor of the publisher's English language books to the bookstore and library markets.  Founded in 1994 by David Lapham, El Capitan Books is known for Lapham's Eisner-Award winning Stray Bullets series as well as the more recent noir-flavored comic, Murder Me Dead.  El Capitan has long had a policy of moving quickly to collect issues of Lapham's comics into trade paperback collections, the format that bookstores prefer -- and Lapham's gritty crime stories are far closer in spirit to the hardboiled crime fiction of Jim Thompson and Richard Stark than they are to the spandex-tinged superheroics that dominate the comic market, so theoretically at least, traditional bookstores should be a good fit for Stray Bullets and Murder Me Dead.


Unlike the situation with the returnable bookstore market where Diamond has an exclusive on El Capitan books, in the direct comic market other distributors such as FM Distribution and Coldcut will continue to distribute El Capitan books and comics.