Alphabetical Index of Other Publishers

Heroines #1: Ted Naifeh Does Superheroes

I’m always surprised to find out what Ted Naifeh’s going to do next. My first awareness of his work was when he was exploring goth identity and gender fluidity. Then he took a sarcastic approach to the fantasy genre starring a young girl discovering her family history of magic. He’s also put out a female version of the running away to become a pirate boys’ adventure type of story, and my favorite, a twisted take on princesses that throws a […]

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Nothing Better 3: Great Expectations Part 1

I was concerned, when I talked about the Kickstarter to publish this series installment, that I would have lost track of the story, given the time since I’d last read it. (The first collection, No Place Like Home came out in 2007; the second, Into the Wild, in 2009.) That wasn’t a problem. While there’s a large cast to keep up with, Tyler Page does a great job of clear storytelling. Plus, college students struggling with relationships and big questions […]

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Tonoharu Part Three

While I can intellectually appreciate the amount of work that goes into such a heavily detailed book, particularly given the artist’s comments on the subject — the style feels woodcut-influenced, with tons of crosshatching — I’m afraid that the third and final volume of Tonoharu didn’t fix the problems I saw in the first book. In short, I don’t care to spend time with the protagonist, Daniel, who’s teaching English in Japan but bored and lonely most of the time. […]

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Leave Me Alone!

Vera Brosgol, author of the fantastic graphic novel Anya’s Ghost, has released a picture book about finding your own space (as announced last summer). Leave Me Alone! is about a grandmother who just wants to get some knitting done. She’s got some tasks to complete before winter, but all the kids in her crowded house keep getting in the way. What’s amazing about this book, and what brought me back to it multiple times, were the superlative double-page spreads. When […]

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Brief Histories of Everyday Objects

Andy Warner’s Brief Histories of Everyday Objects provides capsule four-page histories of a wide variety of everyday objects. But he also covers more than just “did you know who invented the microwave or the sports bra?” I previously wrote about the book’s description, but now I’ve read and enjoyed it. The contents are arranged by the likely location where you’d find the objects discussed — kitchen, living room, bathroom, but also coffee shop, office, and grocery store. History is tricky. […]

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Awkward

It’s an amazing time for graphic novels for kids, and Svetlana Chmakova’s Awkward is only the latest astoundingly good one I’ve read. It’s the story of Peppi, who’s just started at a new school. In order not to stand out in the wrong ways, she does something early on she’s ashamed by, something to avoid bullies that hangs over her memories and keeps her from being her full self. She finds the art club, though, and she enjoys her time […]

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Nightlights

Nightlights is a gorgeous parable by Lorena Alvarez. Although I’m not entirely sure I grasped the meaning of everything that happens in it, it is absolutely beautiful. (And a work that leaves you thinking isn’t a bad thing, either.) Sandy is a young artist, drawing constantly. At night, she sees sparkles of light that fire her imagination, leading to luscious, expansive spreads of collaged images, all richly colored in fuchsias and purples and blues. At school, she meets a ghostly […]

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When Anxiety Attacks

It’s the perfect comic for our times. When Anxiety Attacks is Terian Koscik‘s autobiographical story of how and why she talks to a therapist about anxiety. This simple autobiography is straightforward and approachable, great at demystifying the condition. The thought bubble, considered an old-fashioned comic device, is perfect in this context, an elegant way to show Terian’s inner concerns while her figure is drawn engaging in everyday home activities. It really brings home how she feels, making it understandable to […]

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