Although comics and graphic novels are often seen as books for children, with a primary focus on superheroes and humour, the books I have chosen provide a much different picture of the kinds of material available in the comics medium. I hope these books will prove to be a useful starting point as you explore the world of comics and graphic novels.
Dale Jacobs teaches writing, rhetoric, pedagogy, and comics courses in the Department of English.
PN 6727 .S54465 Z46 2009- 3rd Floor, Main Bldng
Stitches is a powerful graphic memoir that tells the story of Small developing cancer after being exposed to countless unnecessary x-rays as a child. Deeply felt and harrowing, this memoir will push you to reconsider the kinds of stories that are possible in comics.
PN 6727 .M2476 A77 2009- 3rd Floor, Main Bldng
Ostensibly about an arrogant architect who never actually builds any buildings, Asterios Polyp is one of the best examples of formal innovation I have read in the past few years. And it’s a great story to boot.
PN6728.Y2 V38 2003- 3rd Floor, Main Bldng
What happens when a cataclysmic event wipes out every man on earth but one? In this excellent series of post-apolcalytpic graphic novels, you will see what Vaughn and Guerra are able to do with this fascinating concept. There are ten volumes; start with the first, Unmanned.
Local by Brian Wood and Ryan Kelly
PN6790.J34 W66 2008 – 3rd Floor, Main Bldng
A series of loosely connected short stories, Local focuses on a number of different places in North America (including Portland, Missoula, and Toronto) and the people who inhabit those locales. Wood and Kelly are masters of the short form of comics storytelling, crafting small narratives that make you feel like you’ve lived in all the places they describe.
Skim by Mariko Tamaki and Jillian Tamaki
PN 6733 .T34 S53 2009 – 3rd Floor, Main Bldng
In one of the best graphic novels about the confusion of living through high school, Mariko and Jillian Tamaki introduce us to the memorable character Kimberly Keiko Cameron (aka Skim). This book is an example of the art and words working together perfectly to create a powerful whole.