Comics A.M. | Woman charged in theft of Terry Brooks' vintage comics

Legal | Terry Brooks, author of the Shannara fantasy novels, has been revealed as the owner of a valuable comics collection stolen between 2010 and 2012. The vintage comics, valued at between $100,000 and $500,000, were in the possession of the Sterling, Illinois, law firm Miller & Lancaster, where Brooks was an attorney before becoming a full-time author. Trisha J. Clemens, a former employee of the firm, has been charged with theft in the case. She also faces an earlier charge of theft of between $100,000 and $500,000 from the law firm. One of her bond conditions is that she can neither possess nor sell comics. A preliminary hearing has been set for May 2. [SaukValley.com]

Passings | Indian cartoonist V.T. Thomas, better known by his nom de plume Toms, has died at age 87. He lived in the state of Kerala and was the creator of a host of popular comics in the Malayalam language, most notably Bobanum Moliyum, the story of two mischievous children, Boban and Molly, which ran on the back page of the Malayala Manorama newspaper for more than 25 years. Toms said he named the characters after two neighborhood children who asked him to draw them, adding, “This took place after these two naughty children thwarted every attempt of mine to prevent them from jumping the fence around my house and walking through the kitchen, on their way to school.” [The Hindu]

Contests | Submissions are being accepted for the 10th International Manga Competition. Sponsored by the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the awards are open to any comics, published or unpublished, created outside Japan in the past three years. The top prizes include a trip to Japan. Last year's winner was The Divine, by Boaz Lavie, Asaf Hanuka and Tomer Hanuka, published in the United States by First Second. [International Manga Awards]

Political cartoons | Recent Pulitzer Prize winner Jack Ohman, the political cartoonist for the Sacramento Bee, talks about what his job is like in this election year: "To me, it doesn’t have anything to do with caricature. I mean, this is a public policy commentary job. It is a writing job. I’m not somebody sitting at the state fair doing, you know, funny caricatures. You know that’s what a lot of readers like, and I mean certainly I love doing that sort of thing, but to say that I sit down at my drawing board and am thrilled out of my mind that a clown like Donald Trump could get the Republican nomination is deeply troubling." [Oregon Public Broadcasting]

Political cartoons | Sudanese political cartoonist Khalid Al-Baih (who is now based in Qatar) is about to travel across the U.S. to examine and illustrate the parallels between issues in American and Arab politics. [StepFeed]

Creators | Writer Steven T. Seagle, co-creator of Big Hero 6, talks about his new graphic novel, Camp Midnight. [Entertainment Weekly]

Creators | Photojournalist Marc Ellison discusses his graphic novel Safe House, which is based on the stories of young women who are forced to marry as children and who have undergone female genital mutilation in Tanzania. Ellison mixes still photos and videos in a format he calls "graphic novel 2.0," and part of his process is figuring out how to incorporate the videos without interrupting the flow of the story. [Journalism.co.uk]

Comics | Matthew White rounds up 10 comics about animals, from WE3 to Stargazing Dog. [Publishers Weekly]

Retailing | Bruno Batista of Big Bang Comics in Dublin, Ireland, discusses the results of a survey the store did to gauge readers' interest in DC's Rebirth event. [Sktchd]

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