Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2022) Featured Review of Renegade Rule by Ben Kahn, Rachel Silverstein, and Sam Beck

Renegade Rule Cover Art

Renegade Rule by Ben Kahn, Rachel Silverstein, and Sam Beck
Dark Horse Books
Publication Date: June 2, 2021
ISBN: 9781506718019

Renegade Rule follows up-and-coming team The Manhattan Mist as they compete for a spot in the national Renegade Rule Tournament. Renegade Rule is a virtual reality video game similar to capture the flag where two teams play against each other, trying to eliminate players from the other team or find the prize objective on different maps. The Manhattan Mist team is composed of four friends who enjoy spending time with each other and playing the game, all while handling other complications such as family illness, impostor syndrome, and more. 

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Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2022) Featured Review of The Dire Days of Willowweep Manor by Shaenon K. Garrity and Christopher Baldwin

Dire Days Cover Art

The Dire Days of Willowweep Manor by Shaenon K. Garrity and Christopher Baldwin 
Margaret K. McElderry Books / Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: July 20, 2021
ISBN: 9781534460874

After jumping into the river to rescue a handsome young man on a dark and stormy night, Haley wakes in Willowweep Manor, a gothic mansion like those in her favorite books. She learns that the manor—and its caretaker brothers—are the only things keeping evil at bay in the “real world.” Together with this sibling trio, Haley must channel her knowledge of literary tropes to save Willowweep from an evil slime bent on destruction, all while becoming the hero of her own story.

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Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2022) Featured Review of The Tea Dragon Tapestry by K. O’Neill

The Tea Dragon Tapestry Cover Art

The Tea Dragon Tapestry by K. O’Neill
Oni Press
Publication Date: June 1, 2021
ISBN: 9781620107744

In this stunning conclusion to The Tea Dragon series, we continue with the story of Greta and Minette as they look towards the future. Greta struggles to discover her own crafting style, while attempting to create an extraordinary piece to impress a master blacksmith who is looking to take on an apprentice. At the same time, Minette struggles to decide if she should stay or go after she receives an unexpected package from the monastery where she once trained. With the support and love from friends and family, Greta and Minette will decide the next phase in their lives and find out where their place is in the world.

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Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2022) Featured Review of X-Factor, vol. 1 by Leah Williams, David Baldeón, and Israel Silva

X factor Cover Art

X-Factor, vol. 1 by Leah Williams, David Baldeón, and Israel Silva
Marvel Comics
Publication Date: January 12, 2021
ISBN: 9781302921842

It’s a new world order for the mutants of Krakoa. A new combination of mutant powers has allowed the X-Men to cure mutants of death. But how do they decide who should be granted this cure? Longtime X-Men Northstar and Polaris lead a team of misfit mutants to investigate mysterious deaths for potential Resurrection.

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Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2022) Featured Review of Seen: Edmonia Lewis by Jasmine Walls and Bex Glendining

Seen Cover Art

Seen: Edmonia Lewis by Jasmine Walls and Bex Glendining
BOOM! Box / BOOM! Studios
Publication Date: September 29, 2020
ISBN: 9781684156344

American sculptor Edmonia Lewis is the first figure featured in the new nonfiction graphic novel series Seen: True Stories of Marginalized Trailblazers. The goal of the Seen series is to present readers with the life stories of remarkable people who are passed over by the standard history textbooks. This first volume tells the story of an artist who achieved international recognition against all odds: Edmonia Lewis was female, Black, and Native American, seeking to attain an education and career in sculpture during the Civil War period in the United States.

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Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2022) Featured Review of Cells at Work! Baby, vol. 1 by Yasuhiro Fukuda and Akane Shimizu (original creator)

Cells at Work Baby Cover Art

Cells at Work! Baby, vol. 1 by Yasuhiro Fukuda and Akane Shimizu (original creator)
Kodansha Comics / Kodansha USA
Publication Date: February 23, 2021
ISBN: 9781646512027

Cells at Work! Baby is a very cute spinoff of the Cells at Work! manga which turns the body’s cells into fun and quirky characters and takes the reader on a fun and informative journey of all the work it takes to keep a body healthy and functioning. In Cells at Work! Baby, the characters have all been reimagined as younger, more child-like versions of the characters found in the original and focuses specifically on the journey of what happens in a baby’s body during and after pregnancy. There are plenty of adventures to be had, and the book adds in real-life complications that might happen during childbirth and in infancy, including fluid in the lungs, a norovirus invasion, and heat rash—which brings another beloved character from the original into the story.

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Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2022) Featured Review of Incredible Doom, vol. 1 by Matthew Bogart and Jesse Holden

Incredible Doom Cover Art - white text on black background dissolves into pixelated image of sky, houses, and newspaper delivery kid on bike

Incredible Doom, vol. 1 by Matthew Bogart and Jesse Holden
HarperAlley / HarperCollins
Publication Date: May 11, 2021
ISBN: 9780063064942

Set in the 1990s, four teens navigate the early, dial-up days of the Internet through the use of BBS or Bulletin Board System. Allison uses BBS as an escape from her emotionally abusive magician father and meets Samir, another teen connected to the local BBS. When they meet in person, they begin to build a relationship, but conflict arises when Allison runs away from home. In a different town, Richard is in a new school and far away from his former BBS friends. He is the target of bullies until Tina, teenage anarchist and fellow BBS user, connects him with her crew, EVOL, who rebel against social conventions. Richard finds himself becoming more and more involved with this new crew, but becoming friends with the crew is more of a challenge for him.

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Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2022) Featured Review of Villainous by Stonie Williams and Jef Sadzinski

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Villainous by Stonie Williams and Jef Sadzinski
Mad Cave Studios
Publication Date: May 4, 2021
ISBN: 9781952303067

Matilda “Rep-Tilly” Anderson is ecstatic when she’s paired as a sidekick with superhero great Showdown. Showdown is supposed to train her for superhero field duty, but instead, Rep-Tilly spends her time cleaning and picking up dry cleaning. During her “training,” Rep-Tilly learns that Showdown and the Coalition of Heroes are not always so heroic and actually kill people. When she begins to question the heroes and the Coalition, she must decide who she thinks is the real villain and if she wants to team up with the Shadow Order—the people she thought were villains.

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Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2022) Featured Review of Surviving the City, vol. 2: From the Roots Up by Tasha Spillett and Natasha Donovan

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Surviving the City, vol. 2: From the Roots Up by Tasha Spillett and Natasha Donovan
HighWater Press
Publication Date: October 27, 2020
ISBN: 9781553798989

Miikwan and Dez’s story continues in this second volume of The Debwe Series. After her grandmother passes, Dez struggles with her loss and grief. She lives in a group home, but feels lonely and out of place. Dez’s romantic relationship with Kacey grows, but Dez hesitates to make it public. Meanwhile, Miikwan develops her own romance with new student Kiel, who is also dealing with a loss. The four attend an after-school gathering called Mino Bimaadiziwin, but when Dez tries to sit at the drum with the other young men, she is initially denied until an elder, Geraldine, intervenes. Miikwan also defends Dez, and Dez finally reveals her identity as a Two-Spirit person. The four students convince Geraldine that the old protocols are exclusionary and antithetical to Mino Bimaadiziwin or “the good life,” and Riel’s Auntie Alex is invited to share about Two-Spirit teachings. Afterward, everyone, no matter their gender or sexuality, is welcomed back into the circle.

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Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2022) Featured Review of Wicked Things by John Allison and Max Sarin

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Wicked Things by John Allison and Max Sarin
BOOM! Box / BOOM! Studios
Publication Date: April 20, 2021
ISBN: 9781684156061

Everyone’s favorite supernatural detective, Lottie Grote, is back and ready to show the world who the best detective is! Fresh from her time in John Allison’s Giant Days and Bad Machinery series, Lottie is now 19 years old and wanting to start her dream life off right. She’s on her way to Oxford, ready to be on her own, and on top of that, she’s finally being recognized for her years of stellar detective work by being nominated for the National Solver’s Teen Detective of the Year Award. But, things go horribly awry when Charlotte is framed for attempted murder at the very awards ceremony where she was going to wow them all. Her choice: go to jail or join up with the local police to try and clear her name. She decides she’ll show them all just how talented of a detective she really is or maybe just how well she can fix everyone a nice cuppa.

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