The Beguiling: Year In Review

As we continue the celebration of The Beguiling’s 25th year in existence, we thought we’d take a second to look back at what we feel has been an amazing year for comics and graphic novels in the city, and a banner year for us at The Beguiling, Little Island, and TCAF.

What follows is a list of our special events held throughout 2012. There are 50 of them, which is a big number, but frankly it felt a lot busier than that when I think back on it. (Also, if you want to get invited to or otherwise be made aware of these events, make sure to sign up for our mailing list! Sign up is in the upper-right corner of this page.)

Of course there’s always stuff going on at The Beguiling and Little Island that wouldn’t be listed here–great creators like Jeff Lemire, Jim Zub, Matt Fraction, Kelly-Sue Deconnick, Mo Willems, Seth, Chester Brown, Dave Lapp, and dozens more fine folks stopped by the stores to sign their books this year without an ‘official’ event. Little Island also runs comics making classes and crafts every Saturday, and none of those are included either.  But this is the stuff that we made a big deal of, and that our customers seemed to make a big deal out of too…!

January and February

2012-02-11-AdventureTimeJanuary started out with a month long rotating series of Boxing Day sales at The Beguiling and Little Island… We only do one real sale a year, so we try to make it a doozy. We found our feet and started doing events in February, and our February 11th event for Adventure Time ended up being one of the biggest of the year! We also made the initial announcements for TCAF 2012…

Jan 30  – Welcomed Marco Rudy to the Beguiling Art Store
Feb 11 – Adventure Time #1 Signing with Ryan North & Steve Wolfhard
Feb 19 – Jinchalo, Comics Class, My Name Is Elizabeth Launch with Matt Forsythe
Feb 29 – Bill Everett Archives v1 launch with Blake Bell


2012-03-14-BECKY_CLOONANThe amazing Studio Ghibli film retrospective ran this month at TIFF, and we had our biggest mailing list contest of all time, giving away passes to The Hunger Games movie premiere.

This month also marked the passing of a legend in the comics industry, Jean Giraud (Moebius).

Mar 14 – Crossed Day
Mar 14 – Conan signing with Becky Cloonan
Mar 31 – Mal & Lot Comics Making Party, with Chris Leung and Sondang Sianipar


2012-04-08-avengersvsxmenTCAF production was in full swing in April, with a flurry of event announcements made. The first TCAF tie-in event featured Ben Rivers at Toronto Public Library, in a preview of our interactive Comics vs. Video Games events.

Apr 03 – Avengers vs. X-Men Party
Apr 14 – Pirate Girl’s Treasure Comics Making Day – with Peyton leung and Hilary Leung
Apr 17 – Graphically Speaking: Comics vs. Video Games with Ben Rivers, TPL


2012-05-03-TCAF-Delisle copyTCAF TCAF TCAF! Easily our biggest and most elaborate Festival yet, TCAF encompasses more than a dozen events on its own, interacted with more than 20,000 people, and welcomed 350+ artists from more than 17 countries around the world.

May 03 – Comics vs. Games Showcase at Magic Pony
May 03 – An Evening with Guy Delisle
May 04 – A Parent’s Guide to the Best Kids Comics Launch, with Scott Robins
May 04 – Kid Koala Space Cadet Headphone Concert
May 04 – TCAF Kick-Off Event, with Jeff Smith, Gabriel Ba, Fabio Moon
May 04 – Gabriella Giandelli: A Toronto Retrospective
May 05 – FCBD at Little Island, with Andy Runton and Fabio Moon
May 05 – Dr. Sketchy’s Toronto: Draw Kiki
May 05 – Konami Kanata in Conversation @ The Japan Foundation
May 05 – 2012 Doug Wright Awards
May 05 – TCAF Queer Mixer, Featuring Alison Bechdel
May 05 – TCAF Day 1
May 06 – TCAF Day 2
May 07 – Gabriella Giandelli and Marco Cappelli in Conversation at The Italian Cultural Institute
May 27-29 – The Beguiling @ Anime North, Featuring Svetlana Chmakova (Nightschool) and Rem (Soulless).

June and July


Although it looks like things wrapped up May 7th, May stayed busy all the way to the end with a buying trip to Japan, and a massive exhibition at Anime North, and 2 months of focusing on the store. We got back into the swing of events in July by sponsoring some great events, doing some fun in-store promos, and throwing a grand book launch for Jeff Lemire’s The Underwater Welder, one of our favourite books of 2012. All that plus a week long trip to San Diego Comic Con, and we were looking forward to a vacation.

July – Comix Class with Britt Wilson @ Little Island
Jul 15 – Beyond Anime @ 2012 Shinsedai Cinema Festival
Jul 19 – Dark Knight Rises Day
Jul 23 – Comics and Medicine Conference & Panel Discussion
Jul 25 – Adventure Time: Marceline signing with Meredith Gran, Ryan North, and Michael DeForge
Jul 28 – The Underwater Welder – Book Launch with Jeff Lemire


2012-08-26-bigfootboyAugust was a bit slow, but that’s just because we were getting ready for an incredibly busy fall. Probably the best thing that happened? Some amazing posters were created for Little Island Comics (one of which is shown below).

Aug 22 – Real Life Superhero (Play) – Sponsorship
Aug 26 – Bigfoot Boy Launch, with J. Torres and Faith Erin Hicks

See more at


2012-09-26-comicsversusartLittle Island was on a roll this month, with 5 book launches, plus weekly comics creation classes and more! Meanwhile over at The Beguiling we were sponsoring and championing events left right and center, but since they weren’t ‘officially’ ours we haven’t included them here. 🙂

Sep 02 – Luz Makes A Splash! Book Launch, with Claudia DaVila
Sep 08 – Tomi Ungerer – Special Appearance at Little Island Comics
Sep 09 – Three Thieves Book 3: The Captive Prince Book Launch, with Scott Chantler
Sep 20 – Pope Hats #3 Launch
Sep 23 – Binky Takes Charge Book Party!
Sep 26 – Comics Versus Art Book Launch, with Bart Beaty


2012-10-21-rabbis_catOctober was a great month for the small press as Canzine was jam-packed this year, and we threw a launch for the new works by DeForge, Kyle, and Worton. We had our first-ever instore live webcast, which was neat. We’d try it again for the right folks.

Oct 19 – ShiftyLook Live Webcast from The Beguiling, with Omar Dogan, Stacy King, Erik Ko, Shane Law, Matt Moylan, Robe Pereyda, Jim Zub
Oct 21 – Canzine (Vendor, Sponsor)
Oct 21 – The Rabbi’s Cat Film Screening at TJFF
Oct 21 – Triple Threat Book Launch, with Michael DeForge, Patrick Kyle, and Zach Worton


2012-11-09-tatsumiFrankly, I don’t really remember November. There’s no way we jammed as much cool stuff into it as we did, particularly not after we took a week or two in the middle to head to Japan for Kaigai Manga Festa. But, apparently, we did it all…! Thanks to everyone who came out to our 25th Anniversary event especially, that was a pretty darned cool conversation.

Nov 09 – TATSUMI Film Screening at Reel Asian Film Festival (Sponsor)
Nov 12 – Beguiling 25th Anniversary Event with Charles Burns, Adrian Tomine, Chris Ware, and Seth
Nov 13 – Anouk Ricard signs Anna & Froga
Nov 18 – Kaigai Manga Festa (Tokyo, Japan)
Nov 24 – Justin Time: Pancake Express – Book Launch with Brandon James Scott


2012-12-05-FRANKVIVAINSTOREHard to believe, but the year is almost over. We managed to squeeze in 2 book launches, a feature presentation, and a great big holiday party though. And we’re already making plans for next year. But maybe we’ll take January off again… 😉

Dec 01 – A Trip To The Bottom Of The World – Book Launch with Frank Viva
Dec 02 – Checkers and Dot Book Launch, with Jennifer Lum and J. Torres
Dec 02 – Alison Bechdel Presentation and Signing
Dec 05 – Cary Nord signs X-O Manowar at The Beguiling
Dec 17 – Dinosaur Comics Holiday Party, with Kate Beaton, Joey Comeau, Emily Horne, and Ryan North

Thanks to all of our customers and all of the folks around the world who come to Toronto to experience comics in a new way. Thanks to all of the artists and authors who take time away from creating books to work with us to promote them. We’ll see you with more next year!

– Chris @ The Beguiling