Mister Miracle: the Great Escape by Varian Johnson and Daniel Isles
Publication Date: January 25, 2022
Scott Free, an orphan raised at the Goodness Academy on the abysmal world known as Apokolips, is making plans to escape to Earth. Unfortunately, he has caught the attention of Granny Goodness and her Female Furies, specifically their new leader, Big Barda. However, against all the odds, Scott and Barda find common ground and their friendship turns into a romance. This new relationship is put to the test as Scott’s escape plan becomes more urgent, and both teenagers’ secrets are revealed. To accomplish the impossible, Scott will have to live up to his nickname, Mister Miracle.
Continue reading Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2023) Featured Review of Mister Miracle by Varian Johnson and Daniel Isles
Click here to see all of the current Great Graphic Novels nominees along with more information about the list and past years’ selections.
By Night, Volumes 1 & 2 written by John Allison and illustrated by Christine Larsen and Sarah Stern
Publication Date: March 19, 2019
In Volume 1, we meet Jane and Heather who used to be high school besties, but after a falling out have found themselves finding each other again where they grew up in Spectrum, South Dakota. What starts out as a casual hang session at the bar turns into a multi-dimensional travel journey that will either bring Jane and Heather together, drive them apart or keep them together forever…in another dimension!
Continue reading Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2020) Nominees Round Up, June 20 Edition
I read my first Jane Austen novel after watching the 1995 BBC adaptation of Pride and Prejudice. From there I read the other books – and watched various movie adaptations of each. Movie adaptations are often used in schools a culminating activity, with some sort of compare contrast note-taking work. The thing is, a good adaptation can help readers before they tackle the original, giving them the sense of the plot and characters, as well as the big ideas the work addresses.
Some recent graphic novels can serve the same purpose – giving readers access to a work of literature before they tackle the original – whether for school or for pleasure.
Continue reading Graphic Adaptations
Samurai Rising: The Epic Life of Minamoto Yoshitsune is the true story of one of Japan’s greatest samurai warriors and a finalist for YALSA’s 2017 Nonfiction Award. Today I’m thrilled to have the book’s author Pamela S. Turner and illustrator Gareth Hinds here to answer some questions about the book.
Congratulations on Samurai Rising‘s selection as a 2017 Nonfiction Award finalist! Where were each of you when you heard the news? Who was the first person you told about the big news?
Pamela S. Turner (PST): The big news (yay!) arrived one morning via an email from Donna Spurlock, the marketing director at Charlesbridge Publishing. I told my dogs right away but they were notably unimpressed.
Gareth Hinds (GH): I was at a school visit in Vermont when I got the news. They let us know a couple of days before the public announcement, so I was only allowed to tell my wife.
Pamela, what was the inspiration for Samurai Rising? In some ways this story could have focused on numerous samurai, including several of Yoshitsune’s relatives, how did you know you had found your next protagonist in Yoshitsune?
PST: I lived in Japan for six years during the 1990s and during that time read The Tale of the Heike. Yoshitsune impressed me because his tale is so much like King Arthur’s or Luke Skywalker’s: all are heirs to a great tradition, yet raised in obscurity; all become a hero, yet discover that their greatest enemy is a member of their own family. But Yoshitsune’s story is true.
I never considered writing about anyone else from that time period. Despite Yoshitsune’s faults I find him a deeply sympathetic character. According to the standards of his time and culture Yoshitsune did everything he was supposed to do and yet was betrayed in the most cynical fashion. His military accomplishments had a deep and lasting impact on Japanese history; his personal tragedy had a deep and lasting impact on Japanese art and literature. If you go to my website at http://www.pamelasturner.com/resources/yoshitsune_world.html, you can see some examples of how Yoshitsune’s life has inspired generation after generation of writers and artists.
Continue reading 2017 Nonfiction Award Finalists: An Interview with Pamela S. Turner and Gareth Hinds on Samurai Rising