A taste of the new independent bookstore Howling Pages available this weekend in Portage Park, as doors open April 23 for the Seventh Corner Gallery art exhibition; official store opening set for May 13 – Nadig Newspapers



The community can get a glimpse of the new independent bookstore Howling Pages, at 4354 N. Milwaukee Ave., during a pop-up art exhibit from 5-9 p.m. on Saturday, April 23.

Howling Pages, which will sell graphic novels, indie comics and print art, is not expected to officially open until Friday, May 13, but its doors will open to the public this weekend for an organized one-night show by the Seventh Corner art gallery, said Howling Pages owner Alain Park. Admission to the show is free.

“It will be comic book-inspired art,” he said. “They did a few pop-up shows in the area.” Seventh Corner brings together several artists from the Portage Park area.

Although the store hasn’t opened, community support has been overwhelming, Park said. A start-up campaign raised $16,366 to help pay for the store’s initial inventory.
“The response has been tremendous, … especially from the neighborhood,” Park said of the fundraising campaign. He added that most of the contributors are residents he has never met.

The store won’t carry periodical-style single-issue comic books, sometimes called “floppy disk,” Park said. Instead, the store will carry graphic novels, which contain the entire storyline of a comic book series, he said.

The inventory will include stories from famous Marvel and DC characters, but the focus will be on standalone novels, including international and self-published comics.

Park said he hoped the store’s wide selection of comics would help attract new readers to the comics. He added that it can be difficult to choose a comic that is part of a larger storyline, but a novel allows the reader to capture the whole story.

Park said he enjoys comic books as a hobby and his background includes being an artist and writer. “I worked for several years in publishing,” he says.

Portage Park was chosen as the location for the store largely because I Park lives there. “I wanted to invest in my community and I wanted to be able to walk to work,” he said.

Park added that the Milwaukee-Montrose area is becoming “a destination”: with a variety of unique small businesses, including Tone Deaf Records at 4356 N. Milwaukee Ave. and Moonflower bar at 4359 N. Milwaukee Ave.


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