Borders by Thomas King and Natasha Donovan
HarperCollins Publishers Ltd
Publication Date: September 7, 2021
Six years after his older sister left the reserve to make a new life in Salt Lake City, a boy and his mom pack their car to drive south across the border to visit her. When his mom declares that they are not American or Canadian, but Blackfoot, they are denied entry and turn back toward home, only to face the same problem at the Canadian border. The two are then trapped in physical and legal limbo between Sweetgrass, Montana and Coutts, Alberta with dwindling food and supplies.
Continue reading Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2023) Featured Review of Borders by Thomas King and Natasha Donovan
Mao, Vol. 1 by Rumiko Takahashi
VIZ Media LLC
Publication Date: September 14, 2021
Nanoka Kiba is your average teenager except for a mysterious fatal car accident she had as a child. Curious and drawn to an abandoned shopping center, Nanoka finds herself spirited to the Taisho era, where she happens to be saved by a mysterious boy named Mao. When Nanoka returns to her time, she learns that she is not as normal as she first thought. Full of questions, Nanoka returns back to the Taisho era looking for answers but finds herself pulled into Mao’s mystical investigations. They realize they might share a supernatural connection as they look into these paranormal occurrences.
Continue reading Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2023) Featured Review of Mao, vol. 1 by Rumiko Takahashi
The High Desert: Black. Punk. Nowhere by James Spooner
Mariner Books / HarperCollins
Publication Date: May 17, 2022
“Punk rock is Black music.”
Continue reading Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2023) Featured Review of The High Desert: Black. Punk. Nowhere by James Spooner
James Spooner’s coming-of-age graphic memoir shows him navigating life as a biracial teen in 1990’s rural California. Here he grapples with figuring out who he is, not who people — his clueless white mother, his absent Black father, and his mostly prejudiced classmates, teachers, and community members — think he should be. Finding punk music and other Black punks helps him get closer to his true self. Set against a backdrop of an isolated desert community, The High Desert shows a Black teen wrestling with identity, racism, young love, and finding your voice through an alternative community.
Something is Killing the Children, Vol. 4 by James Tynion IV and Werther Dell’Edera
Publication Date: January 11, 2022
Finally, the backstory of Erika’s entry into the House of Slaughter! Wondering where and how our fierce fighter was introduced to this world of monsters and chaos we go way back to where it all started. The first monster she saw, what happened that night she was taken by a Slaughter member, and what happened to her parents. However, before she can stake a claim to the black room of the Slaughter home, she needs to pass a test by facing her worst demons, and Erika has more nightmares than the average person.
Continue reading Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2023) Featured Review of Something is Killing the Children Vol. 4 by James Tynion IV and Werther Dell’Edera
It’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.
Bandette 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!
Also 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.
This 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.
In 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