Comic book reader

Peruse 1.2.0

Comic books are brilliant. They're centuries old and yet still feel like one of the most contemporary forms of art, accessible to all, whether that's The Beano, Judge Dredd, or Watchmen. They also seem to have suffered very little from the digital revolution. This is likely because they're tactile and physical. Unlike vinyl records, however, they don't offer any convenience by being digitized. This doesn't mean that digital comics aren't as good, they just offer a different set of advantages. Vast archives of comics are available online, for example, and although printed versions would be wonderful, freely downloadable versions you can archive and peruse at your leisure are great, too.

This is why Peruse is such a useful tool. It works just like a PDF viewer. In fact, it's one of the best PDF and ePub viewers I've used. But it also loads formats commonly used for digital comics, such as bz, cbr, cb7, cbt, cba, as well as weird ones like CHM (I'm not sure if this has ever been used for a comic, although Windows Help is often a joke). After launching, it will scan a predefined set of folders looking for compatible files and present these like a collection of music, as you see in apps like Clementine. Viewing is as you'd expect, with cursor keys or a click left or right to switch between pages. As this is a KDE application, it sits very well within a KDE desktop using a dark theme. The KDE transitions that scroll parts of the UI in and out of view are also lovely, and the UI does a good job of getting out of the way. There's even a Get New Stuff panel for downloading comics directly, but this seems linked to the Krita website and doesn't offer much content at the moment. Unfortunately, this is a common problem with KDE's Get New Stuff functionality. But if you've already got access to a collection of comic books, give Peruse a try.

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