Q-and-A sessions with 13 influential creators of comics for children and teens.
Marcus, the renowned children’s-literature historian, sits down for frank interviews with some of today's most important and award-winning cartoonists, including Printz winner Gene Luen Yang, multiple Eisner Award recipient Hope Larson, and Scott O’Dell Award winner Matt Phelan. The artists tell their own stories and also speak about their influences and daily routines (if they have one). They not only provide personal insight into their lives and careers, but have also each created a new and original comic, centered around the theme of "the city," creating an embedded minianthology. These cartoons, however—the major visuals in an otherwise prose-heavy book—can fall disjointedly into the middle of the text, breaking up the natural rhythm of the questions and even sentences. Every conversation has an intimate, comfortable feel, and Marcus doesn't shy away from tough questions or blunt language, tackling such subjects as race and death. Though Marcus' questions are nothing if not thought-provoking and insightful, at times they feel a little aimless and cause the conversations to stumble. True fans, however, should not be put off by these editorial foibles and will revel in the deeper look into the creators they adore.
Despite some flaws, this collection proudly stands as an engaging and erudite glimpse between the panels. (source notes, art media notes, selected reading, index) (Nonfiction. 13 & up)