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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Breaks

Emma Vieceli writes (with co-writer Malin Ryden) and draws the webcomic Breaks, which can be described as “what if Archie and Jughead starred in a boys’ love manga?” It’s been running for four and a half years and is still going, updating weekly. The first storyline has been collected by Soaring Penguin Press, which is how I was introduced to the series. I was glad to meet these characters, but I found the book not quite as satisfying as I […]

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Stage Dreams

We’re living in a bonanza period for graphic novels — there are comics for everyone, including those who might be interested in, in this case, a young adult Western with queer and trans characters. Stage Dreams is an historical adventure in which Flor, a legendary outlaw with a trained hawk, robs a stagecoach and kidnaps Grace, a trans lady running away from having to become a Confederate soldier in the Civil War. Grace wants to make it from Georgia to […]

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Adler #1

Although I wanted to give Adler #1 a fair shot, the reliance on cliche and overly familiar elements made it just another forgettable action thriller. It’s written by Lavie Tidhar and illustrated by Paul McCaffrey, and I previously posted some preview pages and covers. I liked the idea of teaming up a bunch of women who transcend the expectations of their era, but I object to most of this first issue actually being about Jane Eyre, who’s pulled from watching […]

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The Twilight Man: Rod Serling and the Birth of Television

I’ve enjoyed the relatively recent boom in graphic memoir and biography, particularly those stories that cover the lives of artists and creative people. Unfortunately, too often we see that those who make long-lasting works struggle personally, and The Twilight Man: Rod Serling and the Birth of Television by Koren Shadmi is no different. What sets it apart, though, is its setting in the relatively modern era. The book has four major sections, tied together with a framing story that will […]

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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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An Enola Holmes Mystery: The Case of the Left-Handed Lady

An Enola Holmes Mystery: The Case of the Left-Handed Lady by Serena Blasco is the second graphic novel adaptation from the YA series by Nancy Springer, following The Case of the Missing Marquess. Unfortunately, the concept is not growing on me. The idea of a young, smart, adventuresome heroine is a great one, but using the Holmes name and characters without bothering to capture what made those stories so well-loved is frustrating. I’m reading this series because I’m a fan […]

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Moonstruck: Some Enchanted Evening

Moonstruck: Some Enchanted Evening is the first direct-to-graphic-novel entry in the hipster fantasy series (although the first issue of this storyline, #6 in the series, was released on its own before plans changed), and the second volume in the series. I was looking forward to it. I liked the idea of the setup (since I read the single issue), in which a frat house used fairy magic to give their parties a better atmosphere, in spite of the magic trapping […]

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