The last long weekend of summer looms before us, and the Good Comics for Kids gang are going to be spending it wisely—by reading comics. We have lots of summer releases and advance copies of fall books, so here’s what we will be reading—chime in in comments to let us know what’s on your stack this holiday weekend!
Robin: I’m settling in with a stack of Scholastic titles, including James Burks’s Bird & Squirrel (already delightful after a few pages read) and Doug TenNapel’s Cardboard. I’ve already read Drama as an advance copy, but I want to peruse its full color glory as well.
I was also considering catching up on a few older series — get the latest few volumes of 20th Century Boys, and maybe finally catch up on a few webcomics like O Human Star (http://ohumanstar.com/) and Nimona (http://gingerhaze.com/nimona).
Esther: Not that I have a whole lot of time to read these days….. but I do have a nice pile of comics to read. And it’s handy that so many of them are digital copies, because it’s been working out well, feeding the baby while reading on the computer! It’s actually easier to handle the digital copy.
But my pile is mostly sequels & series… We know sequels have the potential to be very disappointing, but so far…. I’m enjoying my reads immensely.
I have the sequel to Hereville by Barry Deutsch, called Hereville: How Mirka Met a Meteorite. Mirka is as strong as ever and her family is just as lovable
I also have a sequel to Foiled, Curses! Foiled Again, by Jane Yolen. And I liked the first one, but I really am liking this story. I only wish I had more time to sit and read it.
I also have the latest installment to George O’Connor’s Olympian series, Poseidon. I didn’t look at it yet, but I haven’t been disappointed in any of the installments yet.
I’m looking forward to Drama by Reina Telgemeier (Not actually a sequel to anything). But I have not yet gotten my hands on a copy!
Michael May: They’re not new, but I’ve spent a lot of time this summer with the first couple of Marvel’s Oz adaptations and the four volume Children of the Sea manga. For new books, I hope to get to the final volume of First Second’s Resistance trilogy this week as soon as I finish re-reading Sailor Twain.
Robin: Just to take a moment and flail — Sailor Twain! SO GOOD.
Michael: I know! I seriously NEVER re-read a book as soon as I finish it the first time, but I had no choice with this one.
Eva: Speaking of re-reading, I’m really looking forward to taking a second and maybe a third look at two graphic novels I read last week. The first is Ichiro, by Ryan Inzana. It’s current events and Japanese folklore blended together into an unusual coming of age story. Really good stuff. The second book that deserves a re-read is A Game For Swallows: To Die, To Leave, to Return, by Zeina Abirached. A memoir of a night spent waiting for her parents to return home from a visit to her grandmother in war-torn Beirut, I’ve been describing this book as Persepolis for elementary school-aged kids. It’s a powerful, accessible story.
Kate: At the top of my stack is Why Does Batman Carry Shark Repellant? And Other Amazing Comic Book Trivia, a collection of lists compiled by Brian Cronin, an editor at Comic Book Resources. Cronin’s lists run the gamut from funny — “Five Stupidest Superhero Origins” and “Six Awesome Commie Villains from the Early Days of Marvel” — to fascinating — “Three Very, Very Strange Comics Written by Allan Moore” — to serious — “Five Comic Book Depictions of the Vietnam War.” I fully expect to finish the book knowing more about Aquaman than I ever cared to!
Also in my stack is the second volume of the Lagos’ brothers revisionist history The Sons of Liberty. I wasn’t crazy about the first: the premise was terrific, but the execution was wanting, with so-so artwork and a goofy subplot involving a famous abolitionist. (In the Lagos brothers’ retelling of eighteenth-century history, Benjamin Lay was a master of dambe, an African martial arts form. So much for his Quaker pacifism!) I’m hoping that volume two takes fewer liberties (sorry!) with the historical record and focuses more on the main heroes’ quest to develop and control their new-found powers.
Last but not least is Matt Dembicki’s Xoc: The Journey of a Great White, an edu-comic tracing the migration of a great white shark from the California coast to Hawaii. I read the book during Shark Week, and found it an odd mixture of anthropomorphism and didacticism, with a few Discovery Channel flourishes for good measure. I’d like to read it again before I review it. I can see its value for a school library collection, but I’m not sure it was a good comic — there was an awful lot of telling and not enough showing. We’ll see how I feel on my second pass through the book!
Mike Pawuk: I’ve got my hands full of great titles to read in between enjoying the annual Cleveland Air Show. I’m planning on also reading:
Xoc: Journey of a Great White. I’ve been a fan of sharks ever since I was a kid and the film “Jaws” came out in 1975 – and to a lesser extent since Hanna Barbera created Jabberjaw in 1976. Can’t wait to read this.
Crogan’s Loyalty, by Chris Schweitzer. I’ve been a big fan of Chris’ tales of the fictional Crogan family tree, and this one looks to be just as good with a focus on the American Revolution from both points of view.
Superman: Earth One, Vol. 2. I really enjoyed the first Superman: Earth One graphic novel and I’m greatly looking forward to this alternate approach to Superman.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Ultimate Collection, Vol. 1. I’ve been a fan of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles from way way back to their first appearance in 1984 when the original creators, Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird were telling stories you couldn’t find anywhere else in comics. IDW Publishing has gorgeously reprinted the original stories and I can’t wait to dive into them again when they were primal, gritty, and non-pizza-eating ninjas.
Lori: I can’t wait to sit down with George O’Connor’s newest addition to the Olympiads series, Poseidon. I haven’t been able to keep up with up with it as much as I’d like, so I’m thrilled to be able to read this one.
I’m also tempted to grab my daughter’s copies of Axe Cop: President of the World. Her giggling has made me very curious.
Then there’s my pile of manga I’ve been trying to get through, with Pokemon: Black and White sitting at the top now. I’d like to get caught up with that this long weekend.
Brigid: So much to read, so little time! On the top of my list is vol. 1 of Madeleine Rosca’s Clockwork Sky; I loved her Hollow Fields and I can’t wait to dive into this one. First Second’s Bloody Chester piques my curiosity, so that’s next. And I want to check out Economix: How Our Economy Works (and Doesn’t Work), a new nonfiction title from Abrams. It looks pretty good.
Also, with a couple of days off work, I’m looking forward to catching up on some manga series. I’m a couple of volumes into Blue Exorcist, and it’s a lot of fun, so I want to catch up with that, and I woud like to get up to date with the sassy shoujo manga A Devil and Her Love Song as well. I really enjoyed the first few volumes of GTO: 14 Days in Shonan, so I want to get back into that. And if I really get some downtime, the Alice in the Country of Hearts trilogy awaits…