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The 14 Most Interesting Comics of September

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Each month, we round up the most interesting comics, graphic novels, webcomics, digital comics, and comic-related Kickstarters that we think you should check out.

1. Ghosts

By Raina Telgemeier
Scholastic


One of the most anxiously awaited graphic novels of 2016 is from this decade’s biggest comics phenomenon, Raina Telgemeier. With two of her previous books, Drama and Smile, still on The New York Times Best Seller list for literally hundreds of weeks now, her newest book reads like a work from an artist who is not only at the top of her game but who has enough sales clout to try something a little different.

Ghosts is about two sisters, one of whom suffers from cystic fibrosis, whose family moves them to an oceanside town in Northern California where they hope the sea air will help young Maya’s troubled breathing. The older sister, Cat, is not happy about leaving her friends behind, but also worries a lot about Maya, especially when she learns that this new town is populated by ghosts who seem particularly drawn to her sister.

While Ghosts displays Telegemeier’s skill at writing family relationships and the types of knotty emotional strings that young girls try to unwind for themselves, it also leaves behind the autobiography of Smile and 2014’s Sisters, for a fictional story that deals with indigenous heritage and Día de Muertos celebrations. It’s a book that takes risks not only in depicting another culture but in daring to explore the subject of mortality in a thoughtful and uplifting way that will give younger readers something to ponder. 

2. Angel Catbird Vol. 1

By Margaret Atwood, Johnnie Christmas, and Tamra Bonvillain
Dark Horse Comics

Best-selling novelist Margaret Atwood’s first original graphic novel is the beginning of a three-volume all-ages series that is a throwback to the breezy, even bizarre, storytelling of early superhero comics. Its hero, Strig Feleedus, is a genetic engineer who, in the type of lab accident that is common in comics, becomes mutated into a cat/owl/human hybrid. The transformation introduces him to an underground world of cat/human hybrids who have names like Count Catula and sexy, potential love interest Cate Leone. 

You might expect a high profile graphic novel by an internationally acclaimed novelist to sport highbrow aspirations akin to Maus or Persepolis, but Angel Catbird reads more like Stan Lee and Steve Ditko’s original Amazing Spider-Man run. It’s light, fast-paced, and abundantly weird with wonderfully fluid and expressive artwork by Johnnie Christmas and colorist Tamra Bonvillain. That said, it is also a comic with a message about the dangers that roaming, domestic cats pose to birds (there are even footnotes throughout the comic with factoids courtesy of catsandbirds.ca). 

3. Doom Patrol #1

By Gerard Way, Nick Herrington, and Tamra Bonvillain
DC Comics/Young Animal

Back in the ‘90s, DC’s Vertigo imprint revolutionized comics through a weird and unique blend of superheroes, science fiction, and the supernatural with books like Sandman, Swamp Thing, and Doom Patrol. Spearheaded by editors such as Karen Berger and Shelly Bond, Vertigo introduced American readers to an influx of young British writers like Neil Gaiman, Peter Milligan, and Grant Morrison. These days, however, the line has divorced itself completely from its superhero roots, so when Gerard Way approached Bond with the idea of returning to those early days, it necessitated the start of a new imprint to be called Young Animal.

Way, the lead singer of the band My Chemical Romance and writer of the excellent Umbrella Academy comic for Dark Horse Comics, is very much influenced in style by Grant Morrison and is the perfect choice to kick things off with a relaunch of Doom Patrol. His cryptic, Morrisonian storytelling in this first issue – in which a burrito discarded by an EMT driver leads to the return of some familiar DP characters like Robotman  works particularly because of Herrington and Bonvillain’s pleasantly clear artwork, a departure from the loose and gritty art style you might remember from the ‘90s comics it gets its inspiration from.

4. Hilda and the Stone Forest

By Luke Pearson
Nobrow Press 


Luke Pearson’s series of Hilda books is celebrated in kid-lit art appreciation circles, but probably hasn’t yet achieved the mainstream bookstore recognition it deserves. That may change in 2018 when Netflix launches the animated Hilda show it is currently developing. In the meantime, the fifth book in the “Hildafolk” series brings a new adventure starring precocious, blue-haired Hilda who lives in Trolberg, a little town with a lot of fantastic things to explore: dimensional portals, giant trolls, sea monsters, and more. When Hilda’s mom grounds her in an effort to keep her from going off on all these crazy adventures, something goes terribly wrong and both Hilda and her mom end up lost in the dark and mysterious Stone Forest. 

Hilda is such a smart, delightful and relatable character for adventurous young girls to read about. One of the most interesting aspect of all of Pearson's books, however, is Hilda’s relationship with her single mom and a big part of Hilda and the Stone Forest is the way moms and daughters navigate that balance between friendship and maternal authority.

5. 2000 AD Prog 2000

By Various
2000 AD/Rebellion 

Comics have historically treasured the milestone issue (“Giant-Sized 100th Issue Spectacular!”) but today, with the trend in comics being to constantly reset numbering to create more frequent and accessible #1 issues, we don’t hit a lot of milestones anymore. Long-running British weekly sci-fi anthology 2000 AD hits a big one this month, though, with their 2000th “prog,” a celebratory issue with a little something for readers new and old.

This 48-page comic reintroduces some of the most popular strips of the past 30 years like Judge Dredd and Rogue Trooper, and also re-explains the overarching idea of 2000 AD – it’s actually an alien dispatch edited by Tharg the Mighty, and created by “script and art droids.” The droids for this issue happen to be some of the biggest names from 2000 AD history, including Brian Bolland (making a rare return to drawing sequential pages rather than covers) and Dave Gibbons (each draw one page interludes rather than full stories). A number of new stories are kicked off in this “prog” including Pat Mills and Kevin O’Neill reuniting for a new Nemesis the Warlock story. 

6. Mooncop

By Tom Gauld
Drawn & Quarterly 

"Living on the moon . . . Whatever were we thinking? . . . It seems so silly now.” That quote, spoken by a couple heading back to Earth, sums up Tom Gauld’s droll new science fiction graphic novel set in the waning days of a now out-of-fashion lunar colony. The “mooncop" of the story patrols his district pointlessly—as no crimes have ever been committed—and watches as the colonists he’s meant to protect abandon the quiet colony one by one.

Gauld is a popular illustrator whose work is most often seen in The Guardian and The New Yorker but is also known for his previous comics work like 2012’s Goliath. His minimalist, cross-hatched drawings and dry, almost melancholic wit bring to mind the work of both Edward Gorey and Chris Ware.

7. The Creepy Case Files of Margo Maloo

By Drew Weing
First Second/MacMillan 

Tough but diminutive Margo Maloo is a mediator who has an in with the monsters that live in Echo City. She’s there to ease grievances when disgruntled monsters lose their cool, steal toys or even eat someone. When Charles and his parents move to the city to restore a rundown tenement apartment, one of those monsters ends up in his closet, leading Charles to require Margo’s services. We soon learn these scary-looking monsters are really just scared themselves and hoping not to get displaced from their home by all these new people moving in.

Weing originally serialized Margo as a webcomic that has been well-regarded in the indie comics community, but this attractive hardcover printing will likely be a hit with the young reader audience it was made for. 

8. The Fix Vol. 1

By Nick Spencer, Steve Lieber, Ryan Hill, and Nic J. Shaw
Image Comics

While Nick Spencer has recently become somewhat infamous for his controversial run on Captain America, the comics he deserves the most notoriety for are his collaborations with artist Steve Lieber. The pair first worked together on Marvel’s Superior Foes of Spider-man, a hilarious romp featuring some low-rent costumed bad guys. Now they've teamed up for their own creation, one with a similar tone and sense of irreverence.

The Fix is a raunchy crime comedy that reads like an Elmore Leonard, Shane Black, and Chip Zdarsky collaboration. Its “heroes” are two crooked cops, Mac and Roy, who are willing to sink pretty low (robbing retirement homes, framing honest cops) in order to make some cash (and maybe sell a screenplay about their exploits along the way). The only thing keeping them from success is their psychotic, gluten-free, baby-bjorn-wearing boss Josh. And Pretzels, the police beagle, who knows something’s up. Oh, and their own sheer ineptitude. This is the funniest book of the year and its first five issues have just been collected in a trade paperback for less than $10. 

9. Our Mother

By Luke Howard
Retrofit 

Both Luke Howard and his mother began suffering from anxiety disorders at the same exact age, and he uses his new comic to process—sometimes directly, sometimes indirectly—his childhood memories of his mother’s struggles as well as his own. But Our Mother is not a sober rumination; instead, it is a funny, fast-paced romp through a variety of genres—noir, science fiction, sword and sorcery—that is not afraid to be nonsensical, ridiculous, or deeply personal. The book ends with a conversation between the author and his mom, depicted with cutout photos, and it is a wonderful and affecting coda that illuminates their relationship, adding a touching context to all the bits of story that come before it.

10. Kill Them All

By Kyle Starks
Kickstarter 

Kyle Starks came out of nowhere in 2014 with a Kickstarter for a book called Sexcastle, a hilarious send-up of ‘80s action movies, which has since been optioned by Fox and the Russo Brothers (Captain America: Civil War). Now, Starks is back with another Kickstarter and a new action movie satire. This time it’s Die Hard meets Kill Bill, as a hardened ex-cop and a ruthless female assassin must shoot and slice their way up a skyscraper filled with lethal killers. Starks has a knack for the so-dumb-they’re-smart one-liners ("You’re going to knock them dead, girl"/"That’s the plan") that both satirize and lovingly embrace the cliches of brainless shoot-em-ups. 

The Kill Them All Kickstarter has already reached its goal and is now adding some nice stretch goals for those who still want in.

11. Hadrian’s Wall

By Kyle Higgins, Alec Siegel, and Rod Reis
Image Comics 

The mysterious death of an astronaut sends pill-popping private investigator Simon Moore to a space station where the alleged “accident” occurred so that he can give the corporation a rubber stamp on the official cause of death. Moore is not so quick to fall in line, though, and the fact that the deceased was married to his ex-wife makes his presence there complicated.

In addition to being an outer space murder mystery, Hadrian’s Wall is also a socio-political thriller, set 100 years in the future after the U.S. and USSR nuked each other in 1985, only to then join forces, rebuild society and colonize space. Higgins, Siegel, and Reis previously dabbled in alternate history on C.O.W.L., their ‘60s-era comic about unionized superheroes. This time out, Reis slightly shifts the style of his artwork—reminiscent of Bill Sienkiewicz, Phil Noto, and movie poster pioneer Bob Peak—from the ‘60s influence he used in C.O.W.L. to an ‘80s-tinged futuristic look.

12. On a Sunbeam

By Tillie Walden
Webcomic

At this month’s Small Press Expo, Tillie Walden was a double winner at the prestigious Ignatz Awards. She took home awards for Outstanding Artist and Most Promising New Talent for her first two comics, The End of Summer and I Love This Part. Not one to rest while she’s ahead, Walden is serializing her newest comic online beginning September 28 and, being as prolific as she is, she’ll add 20-40 page chapters every Wednesday.

On a Sunbeam takes place in outer space but is full of the beautiful architecture and touching scenes of young love that might be considered the DNA of Walden’s style at this point in her career. The comic will jump between two stories, both about a girl named Mia, but showing her at two different stages in her life: one as she begins a job restoring old buildings in space and the other as a teenager in boarding school (which is also in space). As the Ignatz Awards have recognized, Walden is an exciting new voice in comics who has a long career (likely full of a LOT of comics) ahead of her.

13. Cheap Novelties: The Pleasures of Urban Decay

By Ben Katchor
Drawn & Quarterly 

Comics and nostalgia have a long history together, but Ben Katchor’s comics dabble in a form of nostalgia that is part imagined, part a grand testament to how our world is constantly changing around us. Katchor’s Julius Knipl is a “real estate photographer” who roams a slightly fictionalized New York City and documents the hidden and forgotten histories of the architecture and small businesses that reside within the buildings. Knipl waxes poetically about freshly delivered telephone books, piano movers, and rubber band salesmen. 

New York City has always been the nexus of urban progress and historic preservation, and therefore it makes the perfect setting for Katchor’s nostalgia for an imagined history whose remnants can still be seen if you know where to look. Cheap Novelties is the latest collection of “Julius Knipl, Real Estate Photographer” strips which have run in Raw Magazine, The Jewish Daily Forward, and other publications since the 1990s.

14. Cat Rackham

By Steve Wolfhard
Koyama Press 

On the surface, Wolfhard’s cute comic looks like it would be an all-ages funny animal strip, but in actuality it is a quiet (yet still often funny) rumination on anxiety and depression. Cat Rackham is a wide-eyed, big-headed, scruffy looking cat who suffers from bouts of existential ennui. In one comic, he can’t get to sleep because of the sound of his own beating heart. In another, he can’t seem to get out of bed (the forest ground) as we watch the seasons pass around him. Cute and wonderfully illustrated, Wolfhard manages to portray aspects of depression that will hit home with some readers more than a realistic depiction may have done.

Wolfhard, one of the artists behind the scenes on Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time, has published Cat Rackham as a webcomic for a number of years. This book from Koyama Press collects all of his strips in one edition. 

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Smart Shopping
This Week's Best Amazon Deals You Can Still Get
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Amazon

As a recurring feature, our team combs the Web and shares some amazing Amazon deals we’ve turned up. Here’s what caught our eye today, August 20.

Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers, including Amazon, and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we only get commission on items you buy and don’t return, so we’re only happy if you’re happy. Good luck deal hunting!

GADGETS, TOYS, AND MEDIA

Crosley CR7007A-MA Patriarch Turntable with Radio, CD Player and Aux-In (Mahogany) for $103.00 (list price $169.95)

TaoTronics Bluetooth Headphones, Sweatproof Wireless In Ear Earbuds, Sports Magnetic Earphones with Built in Mic (IPX5 Splash Proof Rating, aptX Stereo, Up to 7 Hours of Talk Time, Ceramic Antenna) for $25.99 (list price $69.99)

New Matter MOD-t Desktop 3D Printer | Built-In WiFi, Easy to Use, Safe and Quiet for $269.10 (list price $399.00)

Parrot Zik 2.0 Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones (Yellow) for $124.95 (list price $124.95)

Samsung Gear VR - Virtual Reality Headset (US Version with Warranty) for $34.11 (list price $49.99)

JS Portable Mini Wireless Bluetooth Nut Speaker with Sling for iPhone iPad Android and More for $11.88 (list price $25.99)

[The Smallest] Jackery Mini 3350mAh Portable Charger - External Battery Pack, Premium Aluminum Power Bank, Portable iPhone Charger for iPhone 7, 6s, Galaxy S7, Galaxy S6 (Black) for $11.99 (list price $29.99)

Quirky PCORP-GY01 Cordies Pop Wire and Cable Organizer, Grey for $10.00 (list price $14.95)

Satechi Aluminum USB Headphone Stand Holder with Three USB 3.0 Ports and 3.5mm AUX port - Suitable For All Headphone Sizes (Gold) for $34.99 (list price $39.99)

Canon PowerShot G9 X Digital Camera with 3x Optical Zoom, Built-in Wi-Fi and 3 inch LCD touch panel (Silver) for $399.00 (list price $529.00)

Invoxia Smart Portable Speaker with Amazon Alexa, Green for $199.00 (list price $199.00)

Withings Activité Pop - Activity and Sleep Tracking Watch for $99.99 (list price $179.99)

KITCHEN

The Keyboard Waffle Iron for $54.75 (list price $69.99)

Curva Artisan Series Double Wall Beverage Glasses and Tumblers - Unique 8 oz Thermo Insulated Drinking Glasses, Set of 4 for $26.31 (list price $26.31)

MatchaDNA Handcrafted Matcha Tea Bowl - White for $16.89 (list price $29.99)

Nordic By Nature Insulated Neoprene Lunchbox Tote Lunch Bag Made For Women, Men and Kids | Includes 12" Big Bottle Cooler | Lightweight | Rugged Lunch Box | Washable | Designer Camo Pattern Bags for $19.99 (list price $27.99)

One White Apple Wooden Spoons Disposable, 6" Length Eco-Friendly Biodegradable Compostable Birchwood (Pack of 100) GO GREEN! for $12.98 (list price $16.98)

Bento Lunch Box by Lifemark Labs - Stylish Leakproof Lunch Kit with 3 Compartments - For Kids & Adults - Easy Portion Control - Container is Dishwasher & Microwave Friendly for $19.97 (list price $34.95)

Bellemain 4 Piece Airtight Acrylic Canister Set , Food Storage Container for $22.95 (list price $39.95)

koziol KASIMIR Hedgehog Cheese Grater, transparent red for $12.95 (list price $14.40)

Joseph Joseph 40085 Nest 9 Nesting Bowls Set with Mixing Bowls Measuring Cups Sieve Colander, 9-Piece, Blue for $40.00 (list price $42.99)

Cafe Du Chateau 34oz French Press, 4 Level Filtration System, 304 Grade Stainless Steel, Heat Resistant Borosilicate Glass for $22.95 (list price $27.95)

Bekith Brushed Stainless Steel Mortar and Pestle / Spice Grinder / Molcajete for $13.98 (list price $49.99)

Oster 2-Pound Expressbake Bread Machine with 13-Hour Delay Timer, CKSTBRTW20 for $43.12 (list price $59.99)

HOME

Vornado VFAN Vintage Air Circulator Fan, Vintage White for $95.00 (list price $119.99)

Saganizer Hamper with Wheels Rolling Cart Heavy Duty Triple Laundry Organizer/Sorter, Chrome/White for $37.99 (list price $49.99)

Bronze Dimmable Accent Table Lamp with 1 Vintage Edison Style Bulb, Plugin, Brooklyn Bulb Co. Hoyt Collection, Inset Switch, ETL Listed for $69.99 (list price $129.00)

T4U 3 Inch Ceramic Cameo Double Layer Howllow Design succulent Plant Pot/Cactus Plant Pot With Saucer Full colors Package 1 Pack of 3 for $19.93 (list price $49.86)

Rexford Mid-Century Walnut Table Lamp Set of 2 for $119.98 (list price $179.99)

Seville Classics 3-Tier Resin Slat Utility Shoe Rack, Espresso for $29.99 (list price $34.40)

Byredo - Burning Rose Candle for $68.24 (list price $95.00)

K&H Manufacturing Mod Dream Pod Gray/Black 22" (unheated) for $38.39 (list price $45.59)

Deco 79 68135 Metal Bookend Pair for $28.40 (list price $57.00)

Mini Ceramic Hanging Succulent Planters Flower Pots for Home Decor - White 2 Pieces HakkaGirl for $9.89 (list price $16.54)

Prevue Pet Products Kitty Power Paws Multi-Platform Posts with Tassel Toys, Natural for $71.95 (list price $82.74)

HERNGEE Deer Head Single Wall Hook / Hanger Animal shaped Coat Hat Hook Heavy Duty, Rustic, Decorative Gift , Grey for $12.98 (list price $14.98)

OFFICE, SCHOOL, AND CRAFTS

Eames Style Aluminum Group Management Office Chair Reproduction Leather White for $345.00 (list price $1,345.00)

Acrylic Desktop, Folder and Makeup Palette Organizer - Mail, Paper/Paperwork Organizer - File Sorter; File Folder Holder - Laptop Rack - by Unum - Black and Clear, 9" x 6.75" x 6.5" for $20.99 (list price $29.99)

Microsoft Designer Bluetooth Mouse for $23.53 (list price $29.95)

Arteza Real Brush Pens - 24-Colors - Watercolor Markers - (Set of 24) for $21.99 (list price $66.99)

KABB Modern Digital Mechanical Retro Flip Dоwn Clock wіth Internal Gear Operated (Black) for $43.99 (list price $89.99)

Block Sketch Desk Tidy, Blue for $29.06 (list price $38.00)

Sharpie Tank Highlighters, Chisel Tip, Assorted Colors, 12-Count for $4.99 (list price $12.96)

Scotch Magic Tape, 3/4 x 1000 Inches, Boxed, 6 Rolls (810K6) for $9.89 (list price $11.45)

Wilson Jones 3 Ring Binder 3 Inch, Round Ring View Binder, Basic, 362 Series, Customizable, White (W362-49W) for $4.89 (list price $7.18)

eBoot 12 Inches Plastic Ruler Straight Ruler Plastic Measuring Tool for Student School Office, Clear, 2 Pack for $6.99 (list price $8.99)

Mead Composition Notebook, College Ruled, 100 Sheets, 5 Pack (72930) for $13.90 (list price $20.30)

Personal Daily Planner Organizer Will Help You to Keep Work-Life Balance & Achieve a Little More Goals - NO DATES Calendar Planner ( 8,5 X 5,7 ) - Diary Notebook for Man and Women 2017 / 2018 / 2019 for $18.99 (list price $29.99)

HEALTH AND BEAUTY

Conair Oval Shaped Double-Sided Lighted Makeup Mirror, 1x/7x magnification, Polished Chrome Finish for $26.09 (list price $34.99)

Mudder Silicone Cosmetic Containers Cream Jar with Sealed Lids, 3 Pieces (20 ml) for $8.99 (list price $14.99)

Dukes Daily Age-Defying Facial Moisturizer Cream 4oz - Anti-Aging Lotion - Day/Night Face Wash Fuel for Men – All Organic for $19.99 (list price $45.00)

Himalayan Pink Salt Bar Soap Bar with Rose (Everest) (4 Oz)- Handmade Organic with Essential Oils. Natural Moisturizing Body Soap for Skin and Face. With Shea Butter, Coconut Oil, Natural Glycerin for $7.99 (list price $9.00)

Umbra Stowit Jewelry Box - Modern Keepsake Storage Organizer with Hidden Compartment Drawers for Ring, Bracelet, Watch, Necklace, Earrings, and Accessories for $42.05 (list price $60.00)

Gentleman Jon Deluxe Wet Shave Kit | Includes 8 Items: Safety Razor, Badger Hair Brush, Shave Stand, Canvas & Leather Dopp Kit, Alum Block, Shave Soap, Stainless Steel Bowl and Astra Razor Blades for $75.00 (list price $95.00)

Trader Joe's Tea Tree Tingle Shampoo with Peppermint, Tea Tree and Eucalyptus Botanicals, 16-Ounces for $11.43 (list price $12.00)

Buxton Men's Addison Leather U-Zip Hanging Travel Kit, Cognac for $37.88 (list price $70.00)

Eye Cream Anti Aging Moisturizer - for Dark Circles, Puffiness, Wrinkles and Bags - Best Natural & Organic Ingredients - Use Day & Night - 1.7 OZ for $17.99 (list price $25.99)

Red Clay Honey Mask 9 fl oz for Anti Aging Facial Treatment, Facial Cleanser, Pore Reducer, Anti Aging Mask, Acne Treatment, Blackhead Remover, Cellulite Treatment & Natural Moisturizer for $15.95 (list price $49.99)

Dental Tool Set, ElleSye Dental Hygiene Tool Kit for Home Oral Care, Stainless Steel Tartar Remover Dental Pick Dental Scaler Dental Tweezers Anti-fog Mouth Mirror for Personal and Pet Use for $11.69 (list price $29.99)

OUTDOORS, GARDEN, AND SPORTS

Poler Men's Retro Rolltop Backpack, Black, One Size for $63.71 (list price $74.95)

Everstryke Match Pro Lighter - Waterproof Fire Starter Especially for Survival and Emergency Use for $9.99 (list price $29.95)

JOOLA Midsize Table Tennis Table for $144.98 (list price $219.95)

Streamline Rainbow Color Wheel Umbrella for $23.99 (list price $26.81)

mKitchen World Marshmallow Roasting Sticks | Telescoping Smores Skewers Hot Dog Extending Stainless Steel Fork | Extra Long 3.75 FT-45’’|Set of 5|Fire Pit, Camping, Campfire, Bonfire Kids Accessories for $16.99 (list price $37.64)

Schwinn Discover Women's Hybrid Bike (700C Wheels),White,28" for $249.39 (list price $275.37)

Running Belt – Fanny Pack – iPhone 6 , 7 Plus Pouch for Runners - Best Fitness Gear for Hands Free Workout – Reflective Waist Pack by Sport2People for $14.97 (list price $37.47)

Joovy Bicycoo Balance Bike, Red for $117.87 (list price $129.99)

eBags Crew Cooler II (Blue Yonder) for $34.99 (list price $49.99)

2 Pack Swimming Cap - TURATA Waterproof Unisex Premium Earmuffs Silicone No-Slip Swimming Cap for Adults Kids Woman and Men One Size Hat - Black & Blue for $11.99 (list price $29.99)

SEMOO Water Resistant ,2-3 Person,1 Door,3-Season Lightweight Tent for Camping with Carry Bag for $42.99 (list price $79.98)

Moon Lence Outdoor Ultralight Portable Folding Chairs with Carry Bag Heavy Duty 242lbs Capacity Camping Folding Chairs Beach Chairs for $34.99 (list price $67.99)

TOOLS

Bosch GMS120 Digital Multi-Scanner for $65.00 (list price $69.99)

True Utility FIXR Multi-Tool (20 Tools in 1) for $4.09 (list price $14.99)

GlowGeek 120 to 3000 Grit Sandpaper Assortment, Dry/Wet, 9 x 3.6 Inch, 42 Pieces,Sand Paper for Automotive Sanding, Wood Furniture Finishing, Wood Turing Finishing for $9.96 (list price $24.99)

First Aid Kit (275 Pieces 40 Unique Items) Family Emergency Disaster Earthquake & Survival. Large Portable Bag Ideal for Home Car Boat Kayak Backpack RV Sports Camping Hiking. Protect Your Loved Ones for $44.95 (list price $69.95)

Dremel 2200-01 Versa Flame Multi-Function Butane Torch for $39.00 (list price $42.99)

Plus Pen Style Compact Twiggy Scissors with Cover, White (34609) for $4.36 (list price $5.99)

Dremel 8220-1/28 12-Volt Max Cordless Rotary Tool for $79.00 (list price $99.00)

Southwire Tools & Equipment POUCH4 Leather Tool Pouch for $15.28 (list price $17.98)

NoCry Safety Glasses with Clear Anti Fog Scratch Resistant Wrap-Around Lenses and No-Slip Grips, UV Protection. Adjustable, Black & Green Frames for $9.39 (list price $10.49)

Signstek 45 in 1 Professional Portable Opening Precision Screwdriver Hand Tools Kit Set with Tweezers & Extension Shaft for Precise Repair Maintenance for $8.00 (list price $19.99)

Bingogous 5.0Ah 20V Max Premium XR Lithium Li-ion Replacement Battery for Dewalt DCB205 Dewalt DCB180,DCB204-2,DCB205-2,DCB200-2,DCB200 Dewalt DCD/DCF/DCG Series Dewalt 20V Battery 2 Pack for $59.99 (list price $99.99)

ORIA 86 in 1 Precision Screwdriver Set, Magnet Repair Tool Kit with Portable Bag for iPhone/ Cell Phone/ iPad/ Tablet/ PC/ MacBook and Other Electronics for $29.99 (list price $89.99)

Hole Saw Sets,16 Pcs Hole Saw Kit 3/4"-5" Inch Metal Circle Cutter Wood Steel Saws with Mandrels and Install Plate for Door Knob Lock for $16.14 (list price $18.99)

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Big Questions
Should You Keep Your Pets Indoors During the Solar Eclipse?
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PAUL ELLIS/AFP/Getty Images

By now, you probably know what you’ll be doing on August 21, when a total solar eclipse makes its way across the continental United States. You’ve had your safety glasses ready since January (and have confirmed that they’ll actually protect your retinas), you’ve picked out the perfect vantage point in your area for the best view, and you’ve memorized Nikon’s tips for how to take pictures of this rare celestial phenomenon. Still, it feels like you’re forgetting something … and it’s probably the thing that's been right under your nose, and sitting on your lap, the whole time: your pets.

Even if you’ve never witnessed a solar eclipse, you undoubtedly know that you’re never supposed to look directly at the sun during one. But what about your four-legged family members? Shouldn’t Fido be fitted with a pair of eclipse glasses before he heads out for his daily walk? Could Princess Kitty be in danger of having her peepers singed if she’s lounging on her favorite windowsill? While, like humans, looking directly at the sun during a solar eclipse does pose the potential of doing harm to a pet’s eyes, it’s unlikely that the thought would even occur to the little ball of fluff.

“It’s no different than any other day,” Angela Speck, co-chair of the AAS National Solar Eclipse Task Force, explained during a NASA briefing in June. “On a normal day, your pets don’t try to look at the sun and therefore don’t damage their eyes, so on this day they’re not going to do it either. It is not a concern, letting them outside. All that’s happened is we’ve blocked out the sun, it’s not more dangerous. So I think that people who have pets want to think about that. I’m not going to worry about my cat.”

Dr. Jessica Vogelsang, a veterinarian, author, and founder of pawcurious, echoed Speck’s statement, but allowed that there’s no such thing as being too cautious. “It’s hard for me to criticize such a well-meaning warning, because there’s really no harm in following the advice to keep pets inside during the eclipse,” Vogelsang told Snopes. “It’s better to be too cautious than not cautious enough. But in the interest of offering a realistic risk assessment, the likelihood of a pet ruining their eyes the same way a human would during an eclipse is much lower—not because the damage would be any less were they to stare at the sun, but because, from a behavior standpoint, dogs and cats just don’t have any interest in doing so. We tend to extrapolate a lot of things from people to pets that just doesn’t bear out, and this is one of them.

“I’ve seen lots of warnings from the astronomy community and the human medical community about the theoretical dangers of pets and eclipses, but I’m not sure if any of them really know animal behavior all that well," Vogelsang continued. "It’s not like there’s a big outcry from the wildlife community to go chase down coyotes and hawks and bears and give them goggles either. While we in the veterinary community absolutely appreciate people being concerned about their pets’ wellbeing, this is a non-issue for us.”

The bigger issue, according to several experts, would be with pets who are already sensitive to Mother Nature. "If you have the sort of pet that's normally sensitive to shifts in the weather, they might be disturbed by just the whole vibe because the temperature will drop and the sky will get dark,” Melanie Monteiro, a pet safety expert and author of The Safe-Dog Handbook: A Complete Guide to Protecting Your Pooch, Indoors and Out, told TODAY.

“If [your pets] have learned some association with it getting darker, they will show that behavior or at a minimum they get confused because the timeframe does not correspond,” Dr. Carlo Siracusa of Penn Vet Hospital told CBS Philly. “You might put the blinds down, but not exactly when the dark is coming but when it is still light.” 

While Monteiro again reasserts that, "Dogs and cats don't normally look up into the sun, so you don't need to get any special eye protection for your pets,” she says that it’s never a bad idea to take some extra precautions. So if you’re headed out to an eclipse viewing party, why not do your pets a favor and leave them at home. They won’t even know what they’re missing.

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