Graphic Novels & Comic Books Book Reviews

GRACE FOR GUS by Harry Bliss
CHILDREN'S
Released: Feb. 6, 2018

"A heartwarming call and response. (Graphic fiction. 5-adult)"
Based on a short film by Bliss' son, Alexander, this nearly wordless graphic novel follows a seemingly quiet second-grader through an eventful 24 hours. Read full book review >
SHAKA RISING by Luke Molver
GRAPHIC NOVELS & COMIC BOOKS
Released: Jan. 9, 2018

"A worthy introduction that offers a young Anglophone audience entry into a legend of Africa without the annoyance of overtranslation and with refreshingly three-dimensional characters. (Graphic historical fiction. 12-adult)"
Shaka Zulu rises to power amid great regional turmoil to defend his people against the tide of the expanding European-backed slave trade. Read full book review >

LOOK! WHAT DO YOU SEE? by Xu Bing
CHILDREN'S
Released: Nov. 7, 2017

"Wow! This cross-cultural cipher is a feast for the eyes and a challenge for the mind. (Picture book. 8-adult)"
At first glance, this book looks indecipherable—but look closer! Read full book review >
SUGAR TOWN by Hazel Newlevant
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Oct. 17, 2017

"A lushly illustrated comic that explores bisexuality, queer culture, and unconventional sex through the upbeat story of a woman's vacation romance."
In this graphic novel, the simple story of two weeks in the life of a young woman provides insights into the complexities of polyamorous relationships. Read full book review >
POP-UP SHAKESPEARE by Reed Martin
CHILDREN'S
Released: Oct. 3, 2017

"The plays are really the thing, but these concise and often hilarious takes offer tantalizing hints of their enduring value, along with their content. (Informational pop-up. 12-adult)"
Is it possible for one not-very-large volume to contain pop-up summaries of the Bard's every play and poem, with representative scenes, settings, quotes, and historical notes? Read full book review >

TUNNEL TO HELL by Scott  MacGregor
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Oct. 1, 2017

"Illuminates a neglected but relevant part of history and subtly draws parallels to today's water infrastructure crises."
In 1916 Cleveland, a risky tunnel construction project brings together a black inventor and laborers in this debut graphic novel. Read full book review >
CHASING CHRISTMAS EVE by Jill Shalvis
GRAPHIC NOVELS & COMIC BOOKS
Released: Sept. 26, 2017

"Shalvis achieves another winning love story with her signature mix of witty banter, lighthearted humor, and romantic high notes."
When Colbie takes a much-needed break, she doesn't expect to meet the man of her dreams or find unexpected balance, but when she does, will it mean completely leaving her old life behind to embrace her newfound happiness? Read full book review >
HER RIGHT FOOT by Dave Eggers
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 19, 2017

"Occasionally mannered but heartfelt throughout and indisputably timely. (bibliography, source list) (Picture book. 9-13, adult)"
Everyone knows what the Statue of Liberty stands for—but, as Eggers notes, she's not actually "standing" at all. Read full book review >
BRER RABBIT RETOLD by Arthur Flowers
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 15, 2017

"A lavishly illustrated art book with a self-indulgent purpose that may appeal to adults but misses the mark for children's literature. (Picture book/folk tales. 5-10, adult)"
A successful reclamation project—or one that adds to an already-problematic literary history? Read full book review >
DICTIONARY OF WITCHES by Grégoire  Solotareff
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 15, 2017

"A surprising treat with a cackle on every page, this is a perfect book for Halloween or any day ending in Y. (Picture book. 6-adult)"
French artist and author Solotareff provides readers of most ages with an alphabetical guide to identifying, understanding, and avoiding the witch community. Read full book review >
POPPIES OF IRAQ by Brigitte Findakly
GRAPHIC NOVELS & COMIC BOOKS
Released: Sept. 5, 2017

"Small in size but large in impact, this intimate memoir is a highly relevant and compassionate story of family, community, prejudice, and the struggle to love when the forces of the world push groups apart. (timeline) (Graphic memoir. 10-adult)"
From the daughter of a French mother and Iraqi father comes a touching memoir of childhood in Iraq. Read full book review >
MARCO POLO by Marco  Tabilio
GRAPHIC NOVELS & COMIC BOOKS
Released: Sept. 1, 2017

"Complex even for history buffs, this one requires and merits a second read. (afterword, glossary) (Graphic historical fiction. 14-adult)"
Italian cartoonist Tabilio and translator Schwandt breathe some new life into Marco Polo and his travels in this debut graphic novel. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >