Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers (#QP2020) Nominees Round Up, September 24 Edition

Click here to see all of the current Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers nominees along with more information about the list and past years’ selections.

I Wish You All the Best by Mason Deaver
Push
Publication Date: May 14th, 2019
ISBN: 9781338306125

Ben De Becker gathers their confidence over winter break of their senior year of high school and comes out to their parents as non-binary–unfortunately, they are instantly kicked out of the house without even time to put shoes on. Ben manages to contact the sister they haven’t seen in 10 years and moves in with her and her husband. With the help of their sister and new friends, Ben finishes out their senior year in a new school and a new town, trying to navigate what they want their future to look like while dealing with a crushing rejection from their parents. Continue reading Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers (#QP2020) Nominees Round Up, September 24 Edition

Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2020) Nominees Round Up, March 14 Edition

Marvel Rising written by Devin Grayson, Ryan North, and G. Willow Wilson, illustrated by Marco Failla, Georges Duarte, Roberto Di Salvo, Irene Strychalski, and Ramon Bachs
Marvel Worldwide/Marvel
Publication Date: November 6, 2018
ISBN: 978-1302912611

This book is a prequel to the film Marvel Rising: Secret Warriors. Squirrel Girl and Ms. Marvel team up for the first time, forging the backstory of their onscreen best friendship. College student Doreen Green (Squirrel Girl) volunteers to teach coding to high schoolers and Kamala Khan (Ms. Marvel) is one of those students. Another student in the class is manipulated into becoming a villain and Squirrel Girl and Ms. Marvel (with the help of America Chavez and Inferno) must stop her while trying to preserve their secret identities!

Continue reading Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2020) Nominees Round Up, March 14 Edition

#GGN2019 Nominees Round Up, June 14 Edition

The Unstoppable Wasp vol. 2: Agents of G.I.R.L by Jeremy Whitley, Elisa Charretier, Veronic Fish, Ro Stein, and Ted Brandt
Marvel Comics
Publication Date: 3/13/18
ISBN: 978-1302906474

Nadia’s best and only friend from the Red Room, Ying, literally has a time bomb in head. It is up to Nadia and the other genius female teenage scientists of New York, recently recruited by Nadia for G.I.R. L. Labs, to figure out how to disarm and remove the bomb before it kills Ying and possibly everyone else in the room. Meanwhile, Ying and Nadia’s “mother,” their main captor from the Red Room, does not like that her two young genius assassin protégées have escaped, and she will do whatever it takes to get them back. Continue reading #GGN2019 Nominees Round Up, June 14 Edition

Women in Comics – 2017 Eisner Award Nominees

The 2017 Eisner Award nominees are here and once again they include a number of female creators. Though there are too many to list, below are some noteworthy nominees that you may want to add to your reading list or library collection.

Beasts of Burden returns this year in a standalone story named What The Cat Dragged In, which earned a Best Single Issue/One-Shot nomination for Evan Dorkin, Sarah Dyer, and Jill Thompson. In addition to being a good new story in this universe, it is a great starting place for those who haven’t read Beasts of Burden in the past. This is also a great recommendation for any horror fans you may know.

Not surprisingly, Fiona Staples has two personal nominations (for Best Penciller/Inker or Penciller/Inker Team and Best Cover Artist) and a nomination with Brian K. Vaughan for Best Continuing Series all for her great work on Saga. If you don’t already have this series in your library, you should definitely consider it for your older comic fans.

Continue reading Women in Comics – 2017 Eisner Award Nominees

Interview with Alex Award winner Ryan North

I didn’t read too many Young Adult books as a teenager because I was a fool and thought I was better than them. Obviously, the joke is on me because YA books are incredible and that’s basically all I read these days. But this is one of the reasons why I love the Alex Awards. Sometimes teens just fit better with adult books and I love that YALSA supports those teens. Maybe they’ll even come to revisit young adult books in their adulthood just like me. So when we Hub writers were offered the chance to interview Alex Award winners, I jumped at the chance. When I heard Ryan North was one of the interviewees, I LEAPT at the chance.

Image via Goodreads

If you don’t know Ryan North’s work you should get on that yesterday. North is the writer of the hilarious Dinosaur Comics as well as the Harvey and Eisner award winning writer of the Adventure Time comics. North is no stranger to the Youth Media Awards as his Adventure Time comics as well as his Unbeatable Squirrel Girl comics have won entry to the Great Graphic Novels for teens lists in 2014, 2015, and 2016. Most recently his “chooseable path adventure” Romeo and/or Juliet won an Alex Award in 2017. I was able to chat with Ryan via email. Check it out!

Anna Tschetter: You’ve done “chooseable path adventure books” with To Be or Not to Be and now Romeo and/or Juliet and even your Adventure Time comic. Did you read a lot of the classic “Choose your Own Adventure” books as a kid (or a grownup in preparation to write your versions?)

Ryan North: I did! I loved them as a kid and could not understand why adults weren’t reading them. They’re books where YOU get to decide what happens next: what is not to like?  When 30 years later I realized that if I wanted to see these books I guess I should write them myself, I had two advantage, I think: there’s not a lot of books written in the CYOA style for adults, and I could write my book on a computer.  Earlier non-linear narratives tended to be of the “put pieces of paper on a pinboard and connect strings between them for choices”, which obviously limits the scale of stories you can tell, but I could use software to keep track of all the different paths and how they interact with each other – and that really freed me up to try all sorts of new things.

Just as an example: there’s a page early on in the book where you choose your character: Romeo or Juliet.  But then if you play through the book as either of these characters and follow a certain path to its conclusion, you unlock a third playable character: Rosaline!  We figured out how to have unlockable characters in books.  Normally that’s tricky, since you can’t change the state of the book, but what I realized was that you can always change the state of the reader.  So the book tells you a secret for how to unlock Rosaline, and then on your next playthough, when you get to the character select page – which hasn’t changed, obviously – you can now see a way to play as Rosaline.  It’s a neat trick, and I was really happy that we were able to get it to work so well! Continue reading Interview with Alex Award winner Ryan North

Women in Comics: 2016 Eisner Award Nominations

eisnerawards_logo_13It’s that time of year again! The 2016 Eisner Award nominations have been announced and the list includes a ton of great female creators. So many, in fact, that there are too many for a single post. Rather than try to talk about all of these great comics, this post focuses on the nominees that will have the greatest appeal among teens and other fans of young adult literature.

BandetteBandette by Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover has once again earned a double nomination in both Best Digital/Webcomic and Best Continuing Series. This is an extremely fun series that follows a thief with a heart of gold on her adventures. Two volumes are currently available, Presto! (which was on YALSA’s Great Graphic Novels 2014 list) and Stealers Keepers! Also on the list for a second year in a row is Noelle Stevenson’s Nimona, which is nominated in the Best Graphic Album-Reprint. This one also qualifies for the currently ongoing 2016 Hub Challenge, so check it out now if you are participating!

Squirrel GirlAlso nominated in the Best Continuing Series category is Giant Days by John Allison, Lissa Treiman, and Max Sarin, a series that follows a group of friends through their lives at college. The irreverent and off-beat stories are hugely entertaining and have so far been collected in two volumes. For more college adventures, but with a superhero twist, The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl by Ryan North and Erica Henderson, which was nominated for Best New Series, follows Doreen Green as she tries to balance her life as a secret superhero with college life.

SuperMutant Magic AcademyThis year’s nominees in both the Best Publication for Kids (9-12) and the Best Publication for Teens (13-17) include a wealth of great titles by women, all of which are well worth checking out. Of particular note, Baba Yaga’s Assistant by Marika McCoola with art by Emily Carroll is an updated take on the Baba Yaga folk tale and is sure to appeal to those who enjoy creepy artwork and a modern take on familiar stories. Awkward by Svetlana Chmakova is also a great book that will have wide appeal. It tells the universal story of trying to fit in and make friends at a new school. Fans of This One Summer by Mariko Tamaki and Jillian Tamaki will also be excited to see that Jillian Tamaki’s newest work, SuperMutant Magic Academy has been nominated. These offbeat comics are all set at a boarding school that is slightly reminiscent of Hogwarts, but even more weird and hilarious.

silent_voice_1In the category of Best U.S. Edition of International Material-Asia, both A Silent Voice by Yoshitoki Oima and A Bride’s Story by Kaoru Mori made the list. These series have both earned YALSA recognition in the past as well and should definitely be in your Manga collection. As an added bonus, A Silent Voice qualifies for the 2016 Hub Challenge, so you have no excuse not to start reading it now! Continue reading Women in Comics: 2016 Eisner Award Nominations

Women In Comics: Looking Ahead to 2015

Photo entitled "Change the last number! Happy new year!" by clement127. CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.
Photo entitled “Change the last number! Happy new year!” by clement127. CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

As 2015 opens, I have decided to focus this month’s Women in Comics post on the great comics from women that we can look forward to this year. It looks as though 2015 will bring many exciting options for fans of everything from superheroes to memoirs. Get ready for some great reads in the new year!

Unbeatable Squirrel Girl: Marvel will be bringing their Squirrel Girl character back as an ongoing series created by Erica Henderson and Ryan North. The series starts this month, so you can check it out right now.

G. Willow Wilson: Author G. Willow Wilson has two exciting projects coming in 2015, the release of volume two of Ms. Marvel at the end of March and her involvement with the X-Men series starting this month. Both are part of her recently announced exclusive deal with Marvel, which may well point to a future with many more Marvel Universe stories from Wilson. Continue reading Women In Comics: Looking Ahead to 2015