Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2024) Featured Review: The Moth Keeper by K. O’Neill

  • The Moth Keeper
  • by K. O’Neill
  • Publisher: Random House Graphic
  • Publication Date: March 7, 2023
  • ISBN-13: 9780593182260

In The Moth Keeper Anya becomes an apprentice to the Moth Keeper for her nocturnal village. Generations ago, the Moon-Spirit gifted her village with the Moon-Moths that pollinate the Night-Flower which grants them blessings that allow the villagers to thrive. The Moth Keeper’s duty is to watch over the Moon-Moths each night in solitude and guide and protect them. As Anya struggles with the isolation during the cold nights and fulfilling her duty, she grows curious about the sun and what daytime is like. Will Anya be able to keep her vow to protect the Moon-Moths and her village?

The Moth Keeper is a magical coming of age story that beautifully illustrates the pressure of living up to expectations and struggling to carry a burden on your own as well as learning to rely on others. The themes of finding yourself and discovering a sense of belonging within a community is something that many can relate to. The art has an ethereal quality that matches the tone of the story and world building. The color palette includes a wide variety of purples and oranges that express the contrast of the desert setting during the night and daytime beautifully.

The Moth Keeper will appeal to fans of magic and fantasy as well as heartfelt coming-of-age stories. Fans of Hayao Miyazaki’s works such as Spirited Away and My Neighbor Totoro will appreciate the whimsical art style and world building of The Moth Keeper. Video game players who enjoy games such as Kena: Bridge of Spirits, Ori and the Blind Forest, and Celeste will enjoy Anya’s journey of self-discovery and growth as well as the beautiful illustrations of nature. Readers who enjoy witchy stories such as Mooncakes by Suzanne Walker and Tidesong by Wendy Xu will likely enjoy The Moth Keeper as well.

—Kaleigh Oldham

Other Nominated Titles

Release Date: September 6, 2022
Release Date: October 25, 2022
Release Date: November 8, 2022
Release Date: February 7, 2023

The Selected Lists teams read throughout the year in search of the best titles published in their respective categories. Once a book is suggested (either internally or through the title suggestion form), it must pass through a review process to be designated an official nomination.

Each week, the teams feature a review of one of the officially nominated titles. Additional titles to receive this designation are listed as well. At year’s end, the team will curate a final list from all nominated titles and select a Top Ten.

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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