This month’s Reading Resolutions challenge is to read a graphic novel or Manga. While our library has an excellent collection in our Young Adult/Teen area, these books might be less familiar to adult readers.
If you’re wondering what a graphic novel is, the simple answer is that it’s a story told through illustrations. While most people are familiar with comic books, and graphic novels are often referred to as comics, the label is deceptive. Graphic novels can cover all genres of literature, (including non-fiction!) and aren’t limited to traditional comic book/super hero fare. Graphic novels can also include serialized works, and even illustrated versions of popular novels.
Manga are Japanese graphic novels and are read from right to left. Manga have a distinctive artistic style and are most often serialized into multi-volume stories.
We’ve created a special collection of graphic novels, which you can browse here , and we’ve also highlighted a few selections by genre. We’re sure you’ll find a great read, but if you’d like a recommendation, be sure to give us a call.
The Crossroads at Midnight by Abby Howard – In this collection of evocative, unnerving slice-of-life horror, five stories explore what happens when one is desperate enough to seek solace in the unnatural, and what might be waiting for us at the Crossroads at Midnight.
Blankets by Craig Thompson – Loosely based on the author’s life, chronicling his journey from childhood to adulthood, exploring the people, experiences, and beliefs that he encountered along the way.
Girl in Dior by Annie Goetzinger – It’s February 12, 1947 and the cráeme de la cráeme of Paris Haute Couture is flocking to the momentous event of Dior’s first show. Clara, a freshly hired chronicler, is our guide in the busy corridors of the brand new house of Christian Dior. In a flurry of corolla shaped skirts, the parade of models file down the runway. Dior’s career is launched and Clara’s story begins when she is picked by Dior himself to be his model.
Victor and Nora: A Gotham Love Story by Lauren Myracle – Victor is mourning the death of his brother, and Nora is coping with the illness she knows will eventually kill her. Readers looking for a tragic romance with moral ambiguities, even those unfamiliar with the DC universe, will appreciate this backstory of one of Gotham’s most notorious criminals.
Autobiography and Non- Fiction
March by John Lewis – A first-hand account of Congressman John Lewis’ lifelong struggle for civil and human rights, meditating in the modern age on the distance traveled since the days of Jim Crow and segregation.
Fun Home by Alison Bechdel – Author and cartoonist Bechdel tells of her childhood with a closeted gay father, who ran a funeral parlor. The book is the basis for a Tony Award-winning Broadway musical.
Persepolis: the story of a childhood by Marjane Satrapi –The great-granddaughter of Iran’s last emperor and the daughter of ardent Marxists describes growing up in Tehran in a country plagued by political upheaval and vast contradictions between public and private life.
The Beast of Chicago by Rick Geary – The true-crime tale of early 20th century serial killer Herman Mudgett, better known as H.H. Holmes, who was the inspiration for the book The Devil In White City.
Novel to Graphic Novel Adaptations
The Giver by Lois Lowry – Now in graphic novel format, Lois Lowry’s Newbery Medal–winning classic story of a young boy discovering the dark secrets behind his seemingly ideal world is accompanied by renowned artist P.Craig Russell’s beautifully haunting illustrations.
Octavia Butler’s Kindred by Damian Duffy – Dana is a 1970s black woman repeatedly and involuntarily whisked back in time to a nineteenth-century plantation, where she becomes embroiled in the lives of the people enslaved there, risking everything by educating their children, even as she forms an uneasy and dangerous relationship with her own white ancestor.
Anne Frank’s Diary by Ari Folman – Authorized by the Anne Frank Foundation, this volume beautifully brings to life the inhabitants of the Secret Annex. Although this account has not been adapted verbatim, owing to length, Folman and Polonsky effectively convey the material, and the visuals capture the heartbreak of families in prolonged hiding.