Emil Novak of Queen City Bookstore in Buffalo, New York is concerned about the out-of-stocks on key comic trade paperbacks:


Most retailers try to sell product in a multitude of ways.  Many rely on in-store sales, with a mixture of mail order business (i.e., eBay, self-published catalogs, etc.).  In the last 6 months or so, top selling trade paperbacks go out of print and never seem to go back to press.  I'm not talking about titles that are average sellers, I'm talking about top line sellers (see list below).


Even when they are in stock, rarely is there a comprehensive set of cover scans or item descriptions of some of the most popular mainstream titles on the Diamond Website.  This prevents retailers from ordering, or placing special orders of, trade paperbacks with any confidence that they're getting what the customer wants.


Marvel's successful 'Essentials' reprint line is a case in point.  When a title goes out of print we have no idea when, if ever, it will go back to press.  This is a major problem with sales, brickface or Web-related.


Here is the list (not complete) of out of print titles: Ultimates Vol. 2 TP, Marvel Essential Fantastic Four Vol. 1, Marvel Essential Tomb of Dracula Vol. 1, Marvel Essential Spider-Man Vol. 2, Marvel Essential X-Men Vol. 4.  Don't even begin to talk about the EC hardcover box sets.
The opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the columnist and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editorial staff of ICv2.com.