Graphic Novels & Comic Books Book Reviews

THE KING AND THE SEA by Heinz Janisch
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"This gem's childlike warmth, whimsy, and wisdom bring to mind The Little Prince. (Picture book. 7 & up)"
The titular king, a smallish character made of paper and featuring crayoned features and crown, converses with many creatures and inanimate objects in a series of double-page "chapters," each title beginning, "The King and…." Read full book review >
TRAVELS OF AN EXTRAORDINARY HAMSTER by Astrid Desbordes
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"A blunt, at times knee-slapping story suitable for perceptive young readers, those unsure of social cues, and global readers alike. (Graphic novel. 7 & up)"
Hamster—a sarcastic, egocentric, yet still enjoyable protagonist—travels with his band of patient, tolerant timberland friends to the Arctic Circle. Read full book review >

LITTLE NEMO'S BIG NEW DREAMS by Josh O'Neill
GRAPHIC NOVELS & COMIC BOOKS
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"Inventive work by some of comics' most distinguished artists makes these tributes a triumph. (foreword, introduction, contributors' bios, bibliography) (Graphic anthology. 12 & up)"
Thirty-one graphic artists pay homage to newspaper cartoonist Winsor McCay. Read full book review >
HONOR GIRL by Maggie Thrash
GRAPHIC NOVELS & COMIC BOOKS
Released: Sept. 8, 2015

"A luminescent memoir not to be missed. (Graphic memoir. 13 & up)"
Thrash chronicles one monumental summer at an all-girls' camp where she experienced her gut-wrenching first love. Read full book review >
ANN TENNA by Marisa Acocella Marchetto
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 15, 2015

"Zany with a touch of uplifting. You will be measurably hipper after reading it."
A high-spirited graphic novel skewers the Twitterati. Read full book review >

COMMENTARII DE INEPTO PUERO by Jeff Kinney
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Sept. 15, 2015

"For most readers, this effort sits as a curio alongside other Latin versions of modern books, truly delighting only the rare readers who can both navigate the syntax of Latin and giggle at the 'Tactus Casei' ('Cheese Touch'). (Graphic/fiction hybrid. 10 & up)"
The Latin version of Kinney's Diary of a Wimpy Kid (translated by Vatican Latinist Gallagher), is an exploration of new form rather than new content, much like the Shakespearean version of Star Wars or the Klingon version of Hamlet. Read full book review >
THE MARVELS by Brian Selznick
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Sept. 15, 2015

"Time, grief, forgiveness, and love intersect in epic theater celebrating mysteries of the heart and spirit. (notes) (Fiction. 10 & up)"
In the final volume of a trilogy connected by theme, structural innovation, and exquisite visual storytelling, Selznick challenges readers to see. Read full book review >
THE GOLDEN COMPASS by Philip Pullman
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Sept. 22, 2015

"Best for readers new to the series, who won't be distracted by comparisons with the original. (Graphic fantasy. 11 & up) "
Lyra Belaqua begins her journey north again in this graphic-novel adaptation of Philip Pullman's classic fantasy. Read full book review >
THE SLEEPER AND THE SPINDLE by Neil Gaiman
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Sept. 22, 2015

"If this book isn't quite a masterpiece, it's certainly a treasure, and that's more than enough. (Fairy tale. 11-18)"
Is it fair to expect a masterpiece when Gaiman and Riddell work together? Probably. Read full book review >
FIRST MAN by Simon Schwartz
GRAPHIC NOVELS & COMIC BOOKS
Released: Oct. 1, 2015

"A welcome profile of a little-known African-American explorer, despite its somewhat heavy-handed embroidery of the facts. (introduction, chronology, selected bibliography) (Graphic historical fiction. 13 & up)"
A fictionalized account of the life of Matthew Henson, the black American who reached the North Pole before Robert Peary, told in graphic form. Read full book review >
NICHIREN by Masahiko Murakami
GRAPHIC NOVELS & COMIC BOOKS
Released: Oct. 1, 2015

"An intriguing imagining that is both edifying and enlightening and that makes an ancient figure easily accessible to a modern audience . (Graphic historical fiction. 13 & up)"
A graphic-novel treatment of the life and Buddhist teachings of Nichiren, a real-life 13th-century Japanese priest. Read full book review >
MESSENGER by Tony Lee
GRAPHIC NOVELS & COMIC BOOKS
Released: Oct. 1, 2015

"Striking visuals augment an already-captivating tale. (Graphic historical fiction. 12 & up)"
Having tackled Robin Hood in Outlaw (2009) and King Arthur in Excalibur (2011), Lee now envisions Joan of Arc's humble beginnings to her inevitable martyrdom. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Libba Bray
author of LAIR OF DREAMS
August 25, 2015

In Lair of Dreams, the second installment of Libba Bray’s bestselling young adult Diviners series, after a supernatural showdown with a serial killer, Evie O'Neill has outed herself as a Diviner. Now that the world knows of her ability to "read" objects, and therefore, read the past, she has become a media darling, earning the title "America's Sweetheart Seer." But not everyone is so accepting of the Diviners' abilities....Meanwhile, mysterious deaths have been turning up in the city, victims of an unknown sleeping sickness. Can the Diviners descend into the dreamworld and catch a killer? “Weaving together a chilling mystery with a truly elusive solution, several poignant love stories, agonizing injustice, terrifyingly monstrous dreams, and even a cameo by legendary psychiatrist Carl Jung, this installment wraps enough up to satisfy but clearly sets the stage for more,” our reviewer writes in a rare starred review. “How will readers stand the wait?” View video >