Alphabetical Index of First Second

Maker Comics: Survive in the Outdoors!

I’ve been looking forward to this installment of Maker Comics — I’m really curious about learning how to Survive in the Outdoors. As told by Mike Lawrence, Sophia and her younger brother Alonso are spending the weekend with Grandpa, who’s going to take them fishing. They just want to stay on their phones and video games, but he manages to involve them in preparing for their trip. There’s an air of danger to all this. Typical of the series, the […]

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Go With the Flow

Go With the Flow marks just how prevalent female readers and authors have become in comics. As one of the characters says, “Fifty percent of the population gets a period… but it’s like this HUGE secret we can’t talk about?” This book would not have existed several years ago. As it is, it’s a good starting point. It’s a lengthy book, over 300 pages, because the authors touch, if only briefly, on a wide variety of related subjects. (I believe […]

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The Peter & Ernesto Series

The Peter & Ernesto series by Graham Annable features two sloths who are the best of friends although they’re very different in personality. Ernesto is adventurous, wanting to explore and see new things, while Peter appreciates their home and enjoys the familiar. The sloths have perhaps the most minimal character design ever, being basically tubes with faces and sticks for arms and legs, but Annable’s animation experience gives them a wonderful physicality and sense of motion. The result is a […]

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Maker Comics: Grow a Garden!

The purpose of the Maker Comics line is admirable: to teach readers essential or entertaining skills in illustrated form. Unfortunately, while I was very interested in the topic, Maker Comics: Grow a Garden! by Alexis Frederick-Frost was the first series entry that disappointed me. It’s overwhelming. There’s too much background information provided too technically. Instead of feeling encouraged, as though I could try these processes myself (as I did after reading Maker Comics: Fix a Car!), I was frightened away. […]

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Science Comics: Crows: Genius Birds

Science Comics: Crows: Genius Birds by Kyla Vanderklugt offers amazing insight into just how intelligent these birds are. That’s why I love this series: I had no idea about any of these facts before reading, and now I am fascinated by corvids (crows, magpies, jays, and ravens). Vanderklugt beautifully navigates between drawing the bird as a bird and giving it the personality it needs to attract the reader and keep them interested. The crow gets a dog, Buddy, to help […]

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Kid Gloves: Nine Months of Careful Chaos

First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes Lucy Knisley with a baby carriage. Kid Gloves: Nine Months of Careful Chaos captures the graphic memoirist’s experiences with pregnancy and childbirth — which went about as not smoothly as you could fear, since she almost died during the process. From reading her previous autobiographical graphic novels, I knew she’d dreamed about having children for a long time. As she says in her illustrated introduction, the book covers two years of “what […]

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Pumpkinheads

Author Rainbow Rowell (Fangirl) and artist Faith Erin Hicks (The Nameless City, Friends With Boys) team up for a lovely seasonal story about friendship and crushes and moving on to a new stage of life in Pumpkinheads. Josiah and Deja are working their last night at the Pumpkin Patch (which is more like a minor amusement park, with food booths and attractions and a giant corn maze). It’s Halloween, after which the patch shuts down, and they’re getting ready to […]

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Maker Comics: Draw a Comic!

Continuing the excellent Maker Comics line, JP Coovert’s Draw a Comic! is a fun celebration of the love of comics, both as reader and creator, with a surprising amount of technical guidance. There’s a story, too. Maggie and her (talking) dog Rex (it’s a comic) are putting together a new comic library in honor of her grandfather, who used to read Tintin to her and wanted to share the love of comics with everyone. This open acceptance is a hallmark […]

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