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Quick Picks Booklists

THE GRAPHIC FANTASTIC

American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang

Alternates three interrelated stories about the problems of young Chinese Americans trying to participate in the popular culture.

Anya's Ghost by Vera Brosgol

Anya, embarrassed by her Russian immigrant family and self-conscious about her body, has given up on fitting in at school. But after she falls down a falling down a well and encounters a ghost who follows her home, she discovers things could be worse.

The Arrival by Shaun Tan

In this wordless graphic novel, a man leaves his homeland and sets off for a strange new country to build a new life.
Cairo

Cairo by G. Willow Wilson*

Mixes the realistic with elements of the fantastic. The action-driven plot features a drug runner, a down-on-his-luck journalist, an American expatriate, a young activist, an Israeli soldier, and a genie as they navigate the Cairo underworld in search of a stolen hooka coveted by a wrathful gangster-magician.
Complete Maus

The Complete Maus by Art Spiegelman

A visually and emotionally rich tale of the Holocaust.
Emiko Superstar

Emiko Superstar by Mariko Tamki

A self-described geek faces a summer of isolation until she stumbles upon a performance-art group and tries out for a part that leads to minor stardom and a difficult dilemma.
Foiled

Foiled by Jane Yolen

Aliera Carstairs prefers fencing to high school, where she does not fit in, but her life changes when her mother buys her a new weapon with a strange (magical?) jewel attached to the hilt and and a gorgeous new boy named Avery Carstairs shows up in her biology class.

Fun Home by Alison Bechdel*

This graphic-format memoir presents a darkly funny family portrait that details the author's relationship with her father—a historic preservation expert dedicated to restoring the family's Victorian home, a funeral home director, a high-school English teacher, and a closeted homosexual.
Good Neighbors

The Good Neighbors: Book One, Kin by Holly Black, et. al.

Sixteen-year-old Rue Silver, whose mother disappeared weeks ago, believes she is going crazy until she learns that the strange things she has been seeing are real, and that she is one of the faerie creatures, or Good Neighbors, that mortals cannot see.
How I Made It to Eighteen

How I Made It to Eighteen by Tracy White*

Small and angry seventeen-year-old Stacy Black puts her fist through a window and soon finds herself a resident of the Golden Meadow mental hospital. There, she struggles to face the reasons for her depression in order to stop from self-destructing.
Laika

Laika by Nick Abadzis

Fact and fiction come together to tell the story of Laika, the abandoned puppy destined to become Earth's first space traveler.
Life Sucks

Life Sucks by Jessica Abel, et. al.

Life sucks for Dave Marshall. The girl he’s in love with doesn’t know he exists, he hates his job, and ever since his boss turned him into a vampire, he can’t go out in daylight without serious—not to mention painful—consequences. With its vivid, B-movie-style artwork and tongue-in-cheek humor, this hilarious graphic novel is a winner.
Mangaman by Barry Lyga

Mangaman by Barry Lyga

Manga character Ryoko Kiyama falls through a rip into the real world—the western world—and tries to survive as the ultimate outsider at a typical American high school. Visually, this novel moves back and forth between traditional western and Japanese comic styles.
Mercury by Hope Larson

Mercury by Hope Larson

Forced to move in with her cousins after her house burns down, Tara faces a difficult adjustment while her mother is away trying to earn money. Interwoven with this story is that of Tara's ancestors, who in 1859 were convinced by a mysterious stranger to put all their money into searching their property for gold.
Persepolis

Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi

The great-granddaughter of Iran's last emperor and the daughter of ardent Marxists describes growing up in Tehran in a country plagued by political upheaval and vast contradictions between public and private life.
The Plain Janes

The Plain Janes by Cecil Castelluci and Jim Rugg

When transfer student Jane is forced to move from the big city to suburbia, she thinks that her life is over until she meets three other girls named Jane who decide to form a secret art gang and turn the town and high school upside down.

Rapunzel's Revenge by Shannon Hale, et. al.

In this boldly illustrated reimagining of the classic fairy tale, the adventure is just beginning with Rapunzel’s escape from the tower. Instead of a languishing princess awaiting rescue, Punzie is a self-sufficient, tomboyish cowgirl determined to right the wrongs of the evil Mother Gothel and rescue the downtrodden. Along the way, she teams up with a charming huckster named Jack (and his Goose Goldy). Followed by Calamity Jack.
Re-gifters

Re-gifters by Mike Carey

Korean American Jen Dik Seong, also known as Dixie, is on the verge of winning a championship in the ancient martial art of hapkido until she falls for fellow hapkido fan Adam, a California surfer, and she struggles to win his affections as well.
Skim

Skim by Mariko Tamaki

Kimberly Keiko Cameron—a.k.a. Skim—a would-be Wiccan goth, encounters the whole gamut of tortured teen life in 1990s Toronto.
Skip Beat

Skip Beat by Yoshiki Nakamura

After discovering that her rock idol boyfriend is using her as a maid, Kyoko  undergoes a makeover and adjusts her attitude before joining showbiz and seeking revenge against Sho. Using manga style drawings, Kyoko's looks and features change depending on her mood and the inner demons she is trying to keep under control.
Sloth

Sloth by Gilbert Hernandez*

One year after willfully slipping into a coma, troubled teenager Miguel Torres becomes a walking urban legend as he wakes up virtually unchanged—except for his sloth-like pace.
Stitches

Stitches by David Small*

In this award-winning, graphic-format memoir, the author relates his troubled childhood with a father who subjected him to repeated x-rays and his experiences after leaving home to become an artist at the age of sixteen.
The Tale of One Bad Rat

The Tale of One Bad Rat by Bryan Talbot

This beloved underground graphic novel tells the story of a young girl, Helen Potter, who runs away from home to escape her abusive father and indifferent mother. Using Beatrix Potter’s life as her guide, she travels to the beautiful landscapes of the Lake District and lands a job at an inn where Potter once stayed.
Tales from Outer Suburbia

Tales from Outer Suburbia by Shaun Tan

Fifteen illustrated short stories, some humorous and some haunting, set in the Australian suburbs.

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Last Updated 9/14/12