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More BEA Highlights

I had a hard time navigating the BEA site before the show and only found one session related to Graphic Novels. (I know there had to be more, but I really couldn’t find them.) Luckily, I did find a session moderated by John Hogan, the editorial director of Graphic Novel Reporter. I came a few minutes late and missed a few titles, but even so, a number of exciting comics were mentioned. (Not all were children and YA titles).

First Second Books made quite a showing at this panel:  Americus by MK Reed – which is about two best friends who love a certain fantasy series. When one of the friend’s moms discovers the books she wants to have it banned because of all the magic in the books.

Feynman, which was recently reviewed here on Good Comics also had a mention. As did Defiance, the sequel to Resistance. Paul decides to join the resistance. According to one of the panelists, this book is even better than the first one.

MangaMan by Barry Lyga sounded like a lot of fun. A manga character comes to life and falls in love with a real girl.

The Last Dragon by Jane Yolen and Rebecca Guay is being released in October 2011 by Dark Horse. It was noted for the extraordinary artwork. And while I only got a couple of peeks, I have to admit the artwork was breathtaking.

Finally, some other titles worth mentioning are the adaptation to Ray Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes.

In the honorable mention category, the panelists chose a few more children and YA titles. Bad Island by Doug TenNapel which was described as a sort of Swiss Family Robinson. Doug TenNapel is also the author of Ghostopolis.

Walt Disney’s Mickey Mouse: Race to Death Valley by Floyd Gottfredson got a mention from an educational standpoint. One panelistdescribed how educators could use this comic in the classroom and said the familiar character would appeal to kids.

One last title worth mentioning is FAME: Lady Gaga which is put out by Bluewater productions is going to be a must add for my library. I mean, it’s Lady Gaga.

It was great going through the Javits Center last Wednesday. For a change, I had a pen and paper out so that I could absorb and remember all the titles I was seeing. But I felt like I struck gold when I got my hands on a copy of Brian Selznick’s Wonderstruck . While it isn’t exactly a graphic novel, at the very least it’s a hybrid. Where much like The Invention of Hugo Cabret, the illustrations are just as important to telling the story as the text is. I read through the first 100 pages on my train ride home and almost missed my stop. The artwork is beautiful and really captures the imagination.

Last but not least was a bit of a surprise to me. The Big Nate Books have been quite popular in my library. I didn’t realize the books werebased on a regular comic strip by Lincoln Pierce. Andrew McMeel Publishing has the collected strips. Big Nate Out Loud and Big Nate from the Top.

Esther Keller About Esther Keller

Esther Keller is the librarian at JHS 278, Marine Park in Brooklyn, NY. There she started the library's first graphic novel collection and strongly advocated for using comics in the classroom. Her collection is also the model for all middle school libraries in NYC. She started her career at the Brooklyn Public Library, and later jumped ship to the school system so she could have summer vacation and a job that would align with a growing family's schedule. On the side, she is a mother of 4 and regularly reviews for SLJ and School Library Connection (formerly LMC). In her past life, she served on the Great Graphic Novels for Teens Committee where she solidified her love and dedication to comics.

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