Monday, December 13, 2010

Graphic novel book club selections May-August 2011

Yes, graphic novel aficionados, the library plans just this far ahead. It's time to choose some graphic novels for the upcoming trimester of 2011. Feel free to suggest some yourself or weigh in on these options.

Revolver by Matt Kindt
A story involving duality, a young journalist lives in two universes at once. One is a violent dystopia where he is a hero and the other is a dull place where his job is awful and his life's activities are suddenly mundane.

Creature Tech by Doug TenNapel
A story of a young scientist whose father was a pastor, Creature Tech very tastefully explores the age-long argument of religion versus science. The protagonist is attacked by a parasite that gives him super powers and a new philosophy. Also, there are space eels.

Almost Silent by Jason
A collection of Jason's early work, I'll let Amazon describe each story, as I have not read this particular graphic novel. "You Can’t Get There From Here...tells the tale of a love triangle involving Frankenstein, Frankenstein’s Monster, and The Monster’s Bride...Tell Me Something is a brisk (271 panels), near-totally-silent (just a few intertitles) graphic novelette about love lost and found again, told with a tricky mixture of forward- and back-flashing narrative...The Living and the Dead is a hilariously deadpan (and gory) take on the traditional Romero-style zombie thriller."

Transmetropolitan series by Warren Ellis
A 90s series that follows Spider Jerusalem, a vulgar journalist who lives in an overpopulated and dirty futuristic city. Over the course of the series, he uncovers a government plot involving aliens. Or does he?

Blankets by Craig Thompson
Blankets is an autobiographical black and white epic of Craig Thompson's first love. This graphic novel is chock full of humor and is truly compelling and critically acclaimed.

American Vampire by Snyder and Stephen King
We're always talking about Stephen King in the book club anyway, why not read a Stephen King graphic novel? This original story involves vampires and the wild west, how could you go wrong?

Tricked by Alex Robertson
I have not read this graphic novel, either. Go Amazon! "A creatively blocked rock star, a signature--forging memorabilia-shop clerk, a teenager seeking the father she has never known, a functional schizophrenic not taking his meds, a waitress suffering from her latest breakup, and a pretty Latina doing temp work eventually converge for a violent climax...Inspired plotwise, it seems, by The Bridge of San Luis Rey and the twenty-fifth anniversary of John Lennon's murder, Robinson excels at less-than-transparent personae whose adventures he skips among in chapters presented in a countdown, 49 to 1, that bolsters the story's inherent suspense."

Traditionally, the graphic novel book club has taken a break in July for recuperating and reading things that are not comic-related, so let me know if you all would like a break. Either is fine with me. I also acknowledge that the superhero and manga side of the graphic novel world is a bit under-represented here due to a lack of knowledge on my part. If you have any suggestions or recommendations for these genres (preferably a 80+ page standalone or short series that was recently published) let me know. In any case, I'd like some feedback on what you all would like to read and/or what you would NOT like to read. Thanks!


  1. I love Doug TenNapel and have creature tech on my list of "to read." I have heard of Blankets and American Vampire. Either way, they all look like good reads. I look forward to reading them.

  2. Definitely want to discuss Creature Tech with the group. I was floored by the positive/negative portrayal of mid-western Christianity that it put out there. I'm sure you've all noticed that I love me some comparative religion, so that one gets my vote.

    Tricked sound fascinating. I vote for that as well.

    Blankets is intriguing. As long as it doesn't turn out to be one of those Jimmy Corrigan-style relationship-nihilism buffets.

    Warren Ellis is not really my favorite guy, but I loved Planetary to death, so heck, why not Transmetropolitan?

    Hey, for that matter, why isn't Planetary on this list? That's a series that would be super fun and it's fairly easy to get a hold of. Consider that my suggestion.

  3. I would also like to discuss Creature Tech with everyone else. Blankets is fantastic and would also make for good discussion, but maybe not back to back because of the overlap in subject matter (and Jeremiah, I promise, it doesn't Jimmy Corrigan out).

    I like that Tricked is apparently based in part on classic literature, and Revolver has an interesting premise as well. I'm not crazy about the prospect of more Warren Ellis, but I'll read anything.

    And someday, I would like to see Mr. Punch, Love and Rockets, Pedro and Me or (dare I say it) Jokes and the Unconscious as book club selections. I will take full responsibility if everyone hates them.