HeroesCon, but don't do pick them up. Chris Schweizer's The Crogan Adventures is one of those. It has been nominated for two Eisner Awards and it chronicles the adventures of various members of the fictional Crogan family tree, an interesting and varied group that includes cowboys, explorers, adventurers, scalawags, legionnaires, and ninja. This first book (out of a proposed 16!) focuses on the clever and resourceful Catfoot Crogan, a sailor turned pirate who lived in the 1700s.
As you can see from the excerpt below, the story is couched in real historical terms. I very much enjoyed seeing the amount of detail that went into depicting what life at sea would have been like at the time. I also appreciated how these details helped later propel the narrative.
As you have probably noticed from the artwork, it is pretty cartoonish. Even so, the attention to backgrounds, the ships, and the period garb are all on point, highlighting the expressive art style. Schweizer's storytelling and layouts are both expert and exceptional.
All of the reviews I have read about this book have been glowing. Don MacPherson wrote that it "stands up well as a self-contained, one-off story." Snow Wildsmith concluded, "Because of the well-crafted plot, strong writing and distinctive art,
Schweizer’s series is off to a great start and should prove popular with
teen and adult graphic novel fans." Andrew Wheeler summed up that it was "a somewhat sanitized pirate story, but what popular pirate stories
aren’t? It’s full of men swooping down from the crow’s nest, cannons
roaring across narrow stretches of water, desperate hand-to-hand fights
with pistol and cutlass, and men wearing earrings, bandannas, and
strange hats. What’s not to love?"
Crogan's Vengeance was published by Oni Press, and they have more info about it here.