Whether you have always loved comics or you never picked one up in your life, if you want to read about cape-and-tights heroes or curl up with something trendy and artsy, then this list has something for you.
The Arrival – Shaun Tan
The Arrival is proof that a good story doesn’t even need words. A stunning narrative of an immigrant’s experience in a new and alien land, it’s like having someone play solos about hope and isolation on your heartstrings.
Barbarian Lord – Matt Smith
This is the comic book that Vikings would have written if Vikings wrote comic books. Sure, there are other comic books that try to capture the age, or even just borrow the aesthetic, but Barbarian Lord reads like a deadly-serious re-telling of one of the Icelandic Sagas.
Marvel Illustrated: The Picture of Dorian Gray – Oscar Wilde; Roy Thomas; Sebastian Fiumara.
It’s a hard task to adapt a longer book to graphic format, but Marvel does a fantastic job with The Picture of Dorian Gray. Taking a dark, psychological, Gothic novel and adapting it successfully to graphic format – that’s nothing short of a miracle.
Astro City: Confession – Kurt Busiek; Alex Ross; Brent Anderson.
If you never read comics because you felt superheroes were flat characters and the world they are set in simplistic, Confession will change your mind. Smart, sensitive, and nuanced. The storytelling will keep you glued to the page.
Hellboy: The Chained Coffin and Others – Mike Mignola
Although the third in the Hellboy series, this volume of short stories speaks to the soul of the series: respect for the source material. If you like gritty, pitch-perfect renditions of folklore and mythology, and a bit of dry humor on the side, this is the book for you.
-Katherine, Teen Services, Highlands/Shelby Park