Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2022) Nominations Round-Up, Summer

Due to the large number of nominees, not all titles are shown here. See full list below.

Each quarter, the Selected Lists teams compile the titles that have been officially nominated to date. These are titles that have been suggested by the team or through the title suggestion form, read by multiple members of the team, and received approval to be designated an official nomination. At the end of the year, the final list of nominations and each Selected List’s Top Ten will be chosen from these titles.

Across the Tracks: Remembering Greenwood, Black Wall Street, and the Tulsa Race Massacre. By Alverne Ball. Art by Stacey Robinson. Abrams Books / Abrams ComicArts – Megascope, $15.99 (9781419755170). 

Greenwood is a prosperous city for Black Americans, until a deadly confrontation begun by a white mob ensues, leading to the massacre of 300 Black Americans in Tulsa. Greenwood’s development and recovery are explored in this graphic novel.

After the Rain. By Nnedi Okorafor and John Jennings (adapter). Art by David Brame. Abrams Books / Abrams ComicArts – Megascope, $22.99 (9781419743559).

Chioma is visiting relatives in Nigeria, when, on a stormy night, she opens the door to a strange boy missing half of his head. After this strange encounter, Chioma starts noticing odd smells and creatures around her, and as things escalate, she begins to question her reality.

The Ancient Magus’ Bride: Wizard’s Blue, v.1. By Makoto Shinkai. Art by Isuo Tsukomo. 

  • v.1. 2020. Seven Seas Entertainment, $12.99 (9781645058397).
  • v.2. 2021 Seven Seas Entertainment, $12.99 (9781645059868). 

In a spinoff of Ancient Magus’ Bride, action and magic comes to Paris, France, where an artistic orphan, Ao, is chosen to be the inhuman Mage Giselle’s groom. As Ao grows into his alchemical powers under Giselle’s tutelage, he must also navigate his feelings for Giselle and whatever the future may bring.

Asadora!, v.2. By Naoki Urasawa. VIZ Media / VIZ Signature, $14.99 (9781974720101). 

After seeing a strange sight in the storm that had destroyed parts of the town, Asadora vows to find the rest of her family. Years pass, and Asadora and her found family are confronted again by the past.

Be More Chill: The Graphic Novel. By Ned Vizzini and David Levithan (adapter). Art by Nick Bertozzi. Buena Vista Books, Inc. / Hyperion, $21.99 (9781368057868). 

Jeremy wants to be more popular and noticed by his crush. One day, he’s offered a squip, a small microchip implant in his brain that will make him cool. When the squip changes everything about him, will he keep his friend and win over his crush?

Boys Run the Riot, v.1. By Keito Gaku. Kodansha USA / Kodansha Comics, $12.99 (9781646512485). 

Ryo, a transgender teen, dresses in clothes that make him feel comfortable, even if they defy expectations. An unlikely friendship with a cisgender teenage delinquent named Jin soon leads the pair to a start-up clothing business. Follow them as they work to make their business a success!

Cells at Work! Baby, v.1. By Yasuhiro Fukuda and Akane Shimizu (original creator). Art by Yasuhiro Fukuda. Kodansha USA / Kodansha Comics, $12.99 (9781646512027). 

Take a behind-the-scenes look at the biology of a baby’s body as anthropomorphized cells work to keep it safe in this educational and action-packed manga.

Cheer Up!: Love and Pom Poms. By Crystal Fraiser. Art by Val Wise. Oni Press, $14.99 (9781620109557). 

Smart, antisocial cisgender Annie joins the cheerleading squad for college apps and crosses paths with her ex-friend BeeBee, a transgender girl seeking validation in school to keep her parents’ support. The two rekindle their friendship and romance blooms.

The Crossroads at Midnight. By Abby Howard. Iron Circus Comics, $18.00 (9781945820687). 

Five Twilight Zone-like short stories mix real world issues with otherworldly horrors, ranging from terrifying to quietly sad. Amazing art pulls the reader in and heightens the suspense of each story.

Cyclopedia Exotica. By Aminder Dhaliwal. Drawn & Quarterly, $24.95 (9781770464377). 

In this thought-provoking and humorous comic, six cyclopes negotiate love, life, and the pressures of being “other” within a human and cyclopean world.

The Dire Days of Willowweep Manor. By Shaenon K. Garrity. Art by Christopher Baldwin. Simon & Schuster / Margaret K. McElderry Books, $21.99 (9781534460874). 

After jumping into the river to rescue a handsome young man, Haley wakes in Willoweep, a Gothic mansion like those in her favorite books. With a trio of brothers, she must use her knowledge of literary tropes to save Willoweep from an evil force.

Djeliya. By Juni Ba. TKO Studios, $14.99 (9781952203244). 

Mansour Keita and Awa Kouyaté go on a quest to various lands to recover their old kingdom in this West African folklore-inspired tale.

Drifting Dragons, v.7. By Taku Kuwabara. 2020. Kodansha USA / Kodansha Comics, $12.99 (9781646510368). 

The crew of the draking ship, Quin Zaza, continue to enjoy their lives of hunting and eating dragons, while the backstories of several characters are revealed.

Feelings: A Story in Seasons. By Manjit Thapp. Penguin Random House, $21.99 (9780593129753). 

A young woman’s emotional journey over the course of six seasons is beautifully depicted in this graphic novel.

The Hazards of Love, v.1: Bright World. By Stan Stanley. Oni Press, $19.99 (9781620108574). 

Amparo makes a deal with a talking cat who promises to improve their life, but ends up in a place called Bright World. Now, Amparo has to find a way to get back to their own life without losing all of their memories.

Heaven’s Design Team, v.1. By Hebi-zou and Tsuta Suzuki. Art by Tarako. 2020. Kodansha USA / Kodansha Comics, $12.99 (9781646511136). 

When it comes to designing animals for Earth, the work has been outsourced to a design team. They all have different ideas for animals, some stranger than others, and must work together to have their animals approved—quirks and all!

How to Be Ace: A Memoir of Growing Up Asexual. By Rebecca Burgess. 2020. Jessica Kingsley Publishers, $18.95 (9781787752153). 

In this coming-of-age memoir, Burgess depicts their struggle with identity, mental health, and self-acceptance, giving readers an honest, funny, and relatable primer on asexuality—a spectrum of identity that is often misunderstood and misrepresented.

The Impending Blindness of Billie Scott. By Zoe Thorogood. 2020. Avery Hill Publishing, $16.95 (9781910395561). 

Billie, a rising artist, discovers she is going blind and decides to go on a trip to make original paintings. The people she meets and places she visits all guide her towards her future as an artist.

Inkblot, v.1. By Emma Kubert and Rusty Gladd. Image Comics, $9.99 (9781534318243).

A sorceress accidentally summons a magical, time- and dimension-traveling cat that’s threatening to destroy reality. Can she stop the adorable furball before it’s too late?

Jukebox. By Nidhi Chanani. Macmillan / First Second, $21.99 (9781250156372). 

When Shaheen’s music loving father disappears, she and her cousin, Tanaaz, find a time-traveling jukebox that may be behind her father’s disappearance.

Let’s Talk About It: The Teen’s Guide to Sex, Relationships, and Being a Human. By Erika Moen and Matthew Nolan. Penguin Random House / Random House Graphic, $23.99 (9781984893147). 

This comprehensive and easy-to-read guide discusses sex, consent, gender, and body image, as well as how to negotiate personal relationships and difficult situations. This guide is essential reading for growing teens.

Little Witches: Magic in Concord. By Leigh Dragoon. 2020. Oni Press, $11.99 (9781620107218). 

The March sisters attempt to discover who’s behind the disappearances around town while trying to keep their magic quiet in this retelling of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women.

Love Me, Love Me Not, v.7. By Io Sakisaka. VIZ Media / Shojo Beat, $9.99 (9781974713158). 

In volume 7 of this shojo manga series, friends Yuna and Akari continue on their romantic journeys: Yuna hears from a new love while Akari hears from an old ex.

Manga Classics: Anne of Green Gables. By L.M. Montgomery and Crystal Chan. Art by Kuma Chan. 2020. Manga Classics, $19.99 (9781947808188). 

In this manga adaptation, Anne, an orphan, arrives on Prince Edward Island, bringing joy, imagination, and drama to her adopted family, Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert.

My Body in Pieces. By Marie-Noëlle Hébert and Shelley Tanaka (translator). Art by Marie-Noëlle Hébert. House of Anansi Press / Groundwood Books, $19.95 (9781773064840). 

Ever since she was small, Hébert was aware of her weight and appearance and how it would be perceived negatively by her family and peers. In haunting black-and-white illustrations, she shares the journey of her struggle, her trauma, and the potential hope for her future.

Nineteen. By Ancco and Janet Hong (translator). Art by Ancco. 2020. Drawn & Quarterly, $21.95 (9781770464100). 

In a series of personal coming-of-age stories, Ancco explores the darker side of growing up.

Parenthesis. By Élodie Durand and Edward Gauvin (translator). Art by Élodie Durand. IDW Publishing / Top Shelf Productions, $19.99 (9781603094818). 

Judith’s life is forever changed when a tumor triggers seizures and memory loss. Her experience navigating this new reality is hauntingly expressed through this graphic memoir.

A Quick and Easy Guide to Consent. By Isabella Rotman. Art by Luke Howard. 2020. Oni Press / Limerence Press, $7.99 (9781620107945). 

This quick guide provides examples of all the ways consent should be present in relationships. “No means no” is not where consent ends, and the guide encourages partners in a relationship to each give an affirmative and enthusiastic “yes!”

Renegade Rule. By Ben Kahn and Rachel Silverstein. Art by Sam Beck. Dark Horse Books, $19.99 (9781506718019). 

Renegade Rule is one of the most popular VR video games out there, and the Manhattan Mists have made it to a tournament to compete with other teams. The question is, can their friendship survive as the competition goes on?

Seekers of Aweto: The Hunt Is On. By Nie Jun and Edward Gauvin (translator). Art by Nie Jun. Lerner Publishing Group / Graphic Universe, $9.99 (9781728420219). 

Xinyue and Qiliu are brothers who hunt chadolos that carry the magic of aweto with them. Xinyue finds a baby chadolo and must figure out how to take care of it before his brother finds out.

Seen: Edmonia Lewis. By Jasmine Walls. Art by Bex Glendining. 2020. BOOM! Studios / BOOM! Box, $5.99 (9781684156344). 

Follow the true story of artist and trailblazer Edmonia Lewis, who was driven to create and make her own path, in this series designed to highlight lesser known female-identifying historical figures.

Slaughterhouse-Five, or the Children’s Crusade: A Graphic Novel Adaptation. By Kurt Vonnegut and Ryan North. Art by Albert Monteys. 2020. BOOM! Studios / Archaia, $24.99 (9781684156252). 

In this adaptation of Vonnegut’s classic tale, Billy Pilgrim becomes “unstuck in time,” simultaneously living through the firebombing of Dresden and the whole rest of his life. Billy is searching for something meaningful, but what?

Star Wars, v.1: The Destiny Path. By Charles Soule. Art by Jesús Saiz. 2020. Marvel Comics, $17.99 (9781302920784). 

After the events of The Empire Strikes Back, the Rebellion is dealing with their losses against the Empire. With a new foe set on revenge, Luke, Leia, and Lando all find themselves racing against the clock to save the Rebellion.

Surviving the City, v.2: From the Roots Up. By Tasha Spillett. Art by Natasha Donovan. 2020. HighWater Press, $19.95 (9781553798989). 

In this continuing story of the friendship between two Indigenous teens, Miikwan tries to support Dez, who is dealing with the grief of her grandmother’s passing, while also figuring out her place in her community as a Two-Spirit person.

The Tea Dragon Tapestry. By K. O’Neill. Oni Press, $21.99 (9781620107744). 

Return to the magical world of Tea Dragons one more time for a tale of friendship and family, finding yourself, and of course, drinking tea and caring for Tea Dragons.

Thirsty Mermaids. By Kat Leyh. Simon & Schuster / Gallery 13, $29.99 (9781982133573). 

Three merfolk pals run out of booze and ill-advisedly decide to magic themselves some legs. Problems, chaos, and fun arise when they find out they don’t know how to change back.

Villainous. By Stonie Williams. Art by Jef Sadzinski. Mad Cave Studios, $14.99 (9781952303067). 

Tilly, or Rep-Tilly, just joined the Coalition of Heroes and is excited to be working with her idols. She learns the truth about the heroes, and she now must attempt to discover the hero she wants to be while on the run.

Welcome to the New World. By Jake Halpern. Art by Michael Sloan. 2020. Metropolitan Books, $21.99 (9781250305596). 

The Aldabaan family, refugees from Syria living in Jordan, finally receive travel visas to the United States and arrive on the day Donald Trump is elected President. This graphic novel chronicles their first few years in the US.

Wicked Things. By John Allison. Art by Max Sarin. BOOM! Studios / BOOM! Box, $16.99 (9781684156061). 

Lottie Grote has been solving mysteries since she was a wee lass in Tackleford. Now grown up, she’s at the top of her game. But when she’s suddenly accused of murder (!!), she must work with the Metropolitan Police to find out who framed her and why!

X-Factor, v.1. By Leah Williams. Art by David Baldeón. Marvel Comics, $15.99 (9781302921842). 

Krakoa is a mutant paradise where any mutant can be brought back from death. Sometimes these mutants die under mysterious circumstances, and X-Factor must use their skills to solve these mysteries.

Want to suggest a title? The Title Suggestion Form is open!

Want a printable version of this round-up? Download the Summer nominations round-up.

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Great Graphic Novels for Teens

Great Graphic Novels for Teens Blogging Team @ YALSA's The Hub.