Official Press Release
Oni Press is pleased to announce the debut of BORROWED TIME, a dramatic new series of mini graphic novels by Neal Shaffer, the creative mind behind ONE PLUS ONE and LAST EXIT BEFORE TOLL. Mystery is at the core of this story that begins with a trip to the Bermuda Triangle and proceeds to get even stranger.
Taylor Devlin has a great life. He has a great apartment, a loving girlfriend, and a job that allows him to travel around the world. But when a writing assignment takes him to the Bermuda Triangle, his life takes a turn he could never have anticipated. Returning from a mysterious accident at sea he finds a different world than the one he left, and he finds himself with the challenge of getting back to the life he knew and the woman he loves.
“When most people approach the idea of something like the Triangle it’s usually from one of two places,” Shaffer explained. “It’s either to explore it from a kind of sci-fi/conspiracy angle, or to debunk it. For me it’s more philosophical than that. Like, ‘what if it there really is something to it…then what?’ That’s where the story really starts.
“From there it’s really a non-scientific take on the idea of time as a concept that’s not absolute, and through that I try to get at the human side of such a situation. I mean, imagine the dread of realizing that you’ve slipped into a world that’s just a few seconds away from what you had come to know and love, but those few seconds may as well be years, decades, forever?”
As Taylor struggles to come to terms with where he is and what’s happened to him, he comes across others trapped in the same predicament. How their approach differs from his is one of the questions at the heart of this dramatic story.
“Neal is so good at getting to the human element,” series editor Randal Jarrell commented. “His characters are never one dimensional, they’re complex and real. The things that Taylor and the others experience may fall more in the realm of the Twilight Zone than ‘real life’, but their reactions to those things couldn’t be more realistic.”
Joining Shaffer as artist for the series is Joe Infunari, a relative newcomer to comics and entrant in the 2006 Oni Press Talent Search.
“Joe came to me through two converging forces, both of which began at last year’s San Diego Con,” Shaffer explained. “A friend of mine knew of Joe in a friend of a friend kind of way, and suggested that he’d be good for my book. As it happens, Joe had also done one of Oni’s sample stories. I checked out Joe’s art, had a few beers with him at the hotel, and decided right then and there that he was my guy. Luckily, Randy and James agreed.
“His art is absolutely amazing – I can’t stress that enough. I love working with him, I love his work, and if I have my way this will be a long and fruitful collaboration. He’s aces.”
A second collaboration is also in the works, with an unexpected partner.
“I’ve been fortunate to hook up with a very highly respected designer, Tony Larson, who’s part of the Girl Skateboards Art Dump,” Shaffer explained. “He’s designed a t-shirt graphic which I have the main character wearing for a good chunk of the story. We’ll be printing that shirt up in limited quantity for sale when the book gets released. We’re also going to be doing a limited-edition promo poster. These will be really cool collectibles for those who enjoy the book, as well as a kind of ‘product placement’ outreach to people who may not have seen the comic.
“I don’t accept the idea that comics has ‘an audience’ any more than any other medium – film, music, painting, whatever – has ‘an’ audience. I’m trying to take something – the book – that’s strong on its own and do things outside of just what it is to make it even stronger, and in doing so hopefully open up a few eyes that otherwise might not have seen it.”
Details on these products will be available closer to their release.
Borrowed Time #1 will be 80 pages of black and white story and art. Shipping to stores in May with a cover price of $6.95, volume #1 will have an ISBN of 1-932664-40-8. Future volumes will ship on a semi-annual basis.
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