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Graphic Novels Book Reviews

***** Graphic Novels for Adults *****

Listed below are our most recent book reviews for Graphic Novels. To view additional book reviews, choose a subcategory from the list on the left.


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Wytches, Vol. 1

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Snyder, Scott(2015)Recently Added Review
Wytches, Vol. 1

The Rooks family have just moved to Litchfield, New Hampshire to escape a horrible tragedy involving their young daughter Sailor and a relentless bully. Soon, Sailor starts to notice something horrifying in the woods; some dark and unknown. It seems that the wytches are coming for those that are “pledged,” or those up for sacrifice to the wytches. The wytches are horrible creatures that live underground and they enjoy eating children. If you like dark horror stories, this is a great graphic novel to read. It has all your classic horror elements: a house in the woods, weird townspeople, monsters, and lots of frantic emotions. The images in the graphic novel are very eye pleasing and well done; it really brings the dark atmosphere to the reader.

Reviewed by Maeve C., University City Regional

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Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, + Me

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Forney, Ellen(2012)
Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, + Me

Marbles is the memoir of cartoonist Ellen Forney which covers her diagnosis with and subsequent treatment of Bipolar Disorder. The graphic novel spans from Forney’s thirtieth birthday forward as she struggles with mania, depression, medication side effects, and everything in between. Along the way Forney explores the possible connections between her illness and her creativity, going so far as to research artists from the past who exhibited traits of Bipolar Disorder. Though the memoir deals with serious topics, Forney manages to keep the work filled with an equal mix of levity and of hope. This is an important book for anyone trying to gain some insight into this little understood illness or for anyone who is currently suffering and looking for someone to relate to.

Reviewed by Sarah F., Matthews Branch

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The Sculptor

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McCloud, Scott(2015)
The Sculptor

Would you give up your life to be able to create art out of anything? When David Smith makes a deal with Death, he’s suddenly able to mold anything - brick, iron, granite - with a touch of his hand. Unfortunately, he has 200 days to make something worthwhile before he dies. The question is, who decides what something is worth? In the midst of his frustrations with the politics of art dealers, agents, and fellow artists, David meets a girl who makes him feel everything he’s wanted to gather from his works. Now he has to decide what’s worth dying for: love or art. Sometimes the two are the same. This beautiful graphic novel is simply drawn yet psychologically thrilling.

Reviewed by Kaitlyn M., Morrison Regional

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Zen Pencils : cartoon quotes from inspirational folks

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Than, Gavin Aung(2014)
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Zen Pencils : cartoon quotes from inspirational folks

While inspirational and comic books might seem like apples and oranges, artist and blogger Gavin Aung Than creatively combines wisdom with visually impactful graphics in his recent collection Zen Pencils: Cartoon Quotes from Inspirational Folks. Topics from emotional intelligence to feminism, diversity to scientific advancement, and more are celebrated in this graphic novel. Quotes by social commentators and thought leaders such as Jiddu Krishnamurti, Henry Rollins, Samuel Beckett, Robert Ebert, Ira Glass, Marianne Williamson, and many others are woven through dynamic images of personal achievement and social justice. If you enjoy the color and excitement of the graphic novel format, Zen Pencils promises to be an uplifting read.

Reviewed by Lydia T., Main Library

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Forever Evil:  Blight

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DeMatteis, J. M.(2014)
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Forever Evil: Blight

This collection continues the story of the Crime Syndicate takeover of Earth and the resulting destruction of the Justice League of America. Delving deeper into the back stories of Pandora, the Phantom Stranger, and John Constantine, we find our crew of shadowy spell casters searching for the missing members of the Justice League Dark and battling both a growing evil presence called Blight as well as the Crime Syndicate. Can the JLD withstand having their powers siphoned to create a supernatural weapon of mass destruction and save the world? This must-read companion to Justice League Dark - Volume 4, features an all-star cast of mysterious characters and will have you clamoring for the next installment of this riveting series.

Reviewed by Jori F., Steele Creek Branch

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Justice League Dark, Volume 1 - In the Dark

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Milligan, Peter(2012)
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Justice League Dark, Volume 1 - In the Dark

A malevolent spirit brings chaos to Earth and puts the Justice League of America out of commission. Madame Xanadu, a powerful clairvoyant, has a vision of the coming evil apocalypse and brings together Deadman, John Constantine, Zatanna and Shade, a disparate group of anti-heroes who operate in the shadows, far removed from the conventional tights and cape-wearing crowd. This uncomfortable new alliance of practitioners of the “Dark Arts” battles its mysterious, havoc-wreaking foe as its members battle their personal demons and mistrust of each other. This first volume of a great new comic series showcases the abilities and intersecting lives of some of the lesser-known and unorthodox members of the DC Universe with satisfying results.

Reviewed by Jori F., Steele Creek Branch

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The Gigantic Beard That Was Evil

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Collins, Stephen(2014)
The Gigantic Beard That Was Evil

In this modern fable, reminiscent of stories by Franz Kafka or Roald Dahl, a man named Dave lives in a place called Here. His existence is tidy, predictable, and totally hairless, save for one stray hair that refuses to be trimmed, plucked or waxed away. One day, the singular sprout explodes into a beard unlike any seen in Here before, starting a surprising series of events in the town. Will the beard be blight or a blessing for the community? And what will happen to Dave? Pencil lines in varying shades of gray are perfect for this graphic novel, making it visually appealing as well as thought-provoking.

Reviewed by Rene K., ImaginOn

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Andre the Giant: Life and Legend

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Brown, Box(2014)
Andre the Giant: Life and Legend

Whether he played the good guy, the heel or the Brute Squad, Andre Roussimoff made an indelible impression in the worlds of sports and entertainment during his brief and illustrious life. In Box Brown’s graphic novel biography of the entertainer, athlete, actor and generally nice guy, brief vignettes are presented with bold, spare artwork. Repeatedly, Brown lets the reader know that art and reality are not mutually exclusive, and the stories presented are proof, with their embellishments, exaggerations and possible half-truths. Like the storylines he used to act out, Andre the Giant was neither all good nor all bad, but a man who lived a life rife with pain and promise, and who consciously made the most of every sweet year he was given.

Reviewed by Sarah K., Morrison Regional

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Aquaman Vol 1: The Trench

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Johns, Geoff(2012)
Aquaman Vol 1: The Trench

A great reboot for an underrated hero, this is one of the gems on DC`s publishing crown. This comic opens in a world where Aquaman is the butt of jokes about his `friends` the fish, questions of his efficacy out of water, and even public doubts about the existence of Atlantis and his underwater race. All he wants is a quiet existence with his wife in their lighthouse home, away from his abdicated throne, the mocking press, and occasionally venturing out to help people (he is still a hero, after all). Then the Trench arrive, an insatiably-hungry race of carnivores from the deepest underwater caverns, a race that is only a legend to the mighty and ancient Atlantean empire, and a massive threat to anyone who lives near water.

Reviewed by Jonathan W., South County Regional

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Injustice: Gods Among Us Vol. 1

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Taylor, Tom(2013)
Injustice: Gods Among Us Vol. 1

This non-canon standalone story is written as a prequel to the video game. I have never played the game. I don`t know if it properly ties into the game from the creators of Mortal Kombat. I only know that it is the best comic about DC superheroes I`ve read in years. The Joker finally broke our best hero, Superman is alone and his city destroyed. With the best intentions paving a road before him, Superman decides to bring about world peace, usurping personal freedoms, pushing aside national sovereignty, and using his allies to bring his own vision of “justice” whether the world wants it or not. It is exactly what Batman has always feared, and has secretly planned for. Dark, funny, surprisingly poignant, if you like DC, read this book.

Reviewed by Jonathan W., South County Regional

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