Comically Aware: Graphic Novel Reviews for Booksellers

DBD introduces a new graphic novel review series by bookseller Bianca Walters (The Book Table). Every month, Bianca provides reviews of three graphic novels, providing information on suitable audiences for each title, artistic comparisons, and sell-through suggestions.

Babyteeth Volume 1
CONTRIBUTORS
Donny Cates (writer) Garry Brown (artist)
PUBLISHER: AfterShock Comics
ISBN: 9781935002772
SECTIONS: Graphic Novels, Horror, Young Adult (13+)
ON SALE: 12/19/17

This is a story about the birth of the antichrist. And the cult that wants to kill him. And the cult that wants to save and worship him. And his loving family. Babyteeth occupies a familiar horror space with style and confidence - providing a seamless mixture of absurdity, emotion, and unapologetic darkness.

For Fans of: Punk Rock Jesus by Sean Murphy, Nailbiter by Jonathan Williamson,

Art: Inky lines and shadows - a skillful scrawl, and perfect reflection of the tone.

Sell it: In the horror section, to people who are touched by familial love and strong females but are also kind of goth.


Generation Gone Volume 1
CONTRIBUTORSAles Kot (writer), Andre Lima Araujo (writer, artist), Chris O’Halloran (artist)
PUBLISHER: Image Comics
ISBN9781534304703
SECTIONS: Graphic Novels, Sci-fi (16+)
ON SALE: 1/9/2018

“Be anything you want to be, as long as it isn’t harming others. Because you can very likely achieve it.”

Elena realizes she can fly and goes straight to the sun to bask and test her limits. Her boyfriend Nick has discovered himself to be indestructible and in no time is expressing the self-multiplying rage that is present in every panel he’s in. Baldwin, ever the dutiful third wheel, can’t quite see his powers right away like the others do. Three young hackers wanting to test their strength, they were looking to pillage some big bank when they stumbled into the trap of a man called Mr. Akio. He chooses the millennial hackers to be recipients of an “evolutionary” gift. What that gift entails is unclear to the hackers and maybe even Akio himself. The only sure thing is that Elena, Baldwin, and Nick are no longer limited to the skills and strengths of average humans. This series is painfully timely, and reading it hurt so good.

For Fans of: MR. ROBOT, John Dies at the End by David Wong, Neuromancer by William Gibson, Akira the Katsuhiro Otomo Movie & Manga

Art: Ajauro is as bold as this concept, and terrifying when it counts. 

Sell it: To those hungry for hacker flavored sci-fi and revolution.


Elsewhere Volume 1
CONTRIBUTORSJay Faerber (writer), Sumeyye Kesgin (artist)
PUBLISHER: Image Comics
ISBN9781534304697
SECTIONS: Graphic Novels, Young Adult (13+)
ON SALE: 1/9/18

Where did Amelia Earhart really go all those years ago? Jay Faerber has some ideas. He has created the land of Korvath, where Amelia materializes in the middle of the daring escape of Cort and Tavel - two rebels, fighting against the evil dictator Lord Kragen. Structurally fast paced, Faeber fleshes out this world with agility and surprising touches of whimsical emotion.  For instance, the mode of transport in Amelia and the rebels’ escape is a “steed” - a flying dragon-horse with a lion’s mane - but after Amelia lands one for the first time, she takes what is her first moment of realization while the rebels decide what to do with her. She begins to cry, and the steed cries also, as it is an empathic species. Little surprises like this are everywhere in Elsewhere, rendering Korvath and its inhabitants wildly interesting without ever slowing the pace. I finished this volume engulfed in questions that must be answered, and a dire need to read something about Amelia Earhart.     

For Fans of: Quirky historical sci-fi, kind of in the Sandman way but with more classical adventure elements.    

Art: Kesgin flexes her creature muscles, previously on display in Faerber’s Copperhead, with expressive and dynamic species as well as a believable Earhart that I’d like to see on a poster.

Sell it: To those looking for a playful but engrossing history-laced fantasy adventure.


ELSEWHERE VOLUME 1 COMIC TRAILER

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Bianca is a bookseller, a polite troublemaker, an eventual time traveller, and a graphic novel evangelist. She and her two cats are from Berwyn, IL and she currently works at The Book Table in Oak Park. Follow the store on Instagram @thebooktable to see some pictures she takes, and read more of her recommendations here: http://www.booktable.net/biancas-picks

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