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Graphic Novel

Hoo Goes There?

Here’s a very unusual graphic novel which comes to us courtesy of Action Lab, called The Ghost, The Owl. “On a cool evening on the swamp, a figure appears dancing across the water. A human figure, but far from a human form. A Ghost, a young girl spirit that seems to have lost its way. A good Samaritan owl decides to help against the wishes of his animal brethren. What mysteries does the ghost girl hold the secrets to and what will happen when she and the owl unlock them together? Will they find out what happened to her? Will she find her way to where she needs to be? What will happen to the animals in the swamp and surrounding forest?” Written by Franco and illustrated by Sara Richard, it’s available now at Barnes & Noble. Meanwhile there’s a preview over at Comicsverse.

image c. 2018 Action Lab

 

Learning to Live with Change

Some of you may recall the Eisner-nominated anthology comic Island, which looked at LGBTQ issues from a variety of perspectives through a variety of artists and writers. Well now Image Comics have taken one selection from Island, called The Pervert, and expanded upon it to full graphic novel length. “A surprisingly honest and touching account of a trans girl surviving through sex work in Seattle, The Pervert is an unflinching debut graphic novel that is preoccupied with work — what we put into our work and what it takes from us.” Needless to say, this is Adults Only material — and by that, we mean grown-ups. Written by Michelle Perez and illustrated by Remy Boydell (Emergency!, Recovery Blogger), it’s available in trade paperback now. Image has a detailed preview (with reviews) at their web site.

image c. 2018 Image Comics

For Your Fashionable Feet

Sara Varon is a comic creator whom we’ve talked about before several times as both a writer and an artist. (Seriously: Look her up!) Now she’s back as both again with her latest hardcover book, New Shoes, published by First Second. They describe it as “… a heartwarming graphic novel about a donkey on a quest to make the perfect pair of shoes.” Really now? “Francis the donkey is the best shoemaker in the village. He uses only the finest materials: coconut wood for the soles, goat’s wool for the insoles, and wild tiger grass for the uppers. One day he receives a special order from his favorite singer: Miss Manatee, the queen of calypso. But he’s all out of tiger grass! To make the perfect pair of shoes, Francis must journey deep into the jungle . . . and that means leaving his village for the first time.” Find it now over at Barnes & Noble.

image c. 2018 First Second

Lonely Girl Meets Only Bird

Dodo is a new full-color graphic novel written and illustrated by Felipe Nunes. Ostensibly for young readers, it actually has more on its mind… “Laila is six years old and she’s been taken out of school following her parents’ divorce. She doesn’t understand why she can’t go to school with the rest of her friends or why her dad never comes by anymore. Laila comes across a mysterious bird, a dodo named Ralph, and befriends the creature that has been living in the part near her house. Through her friendship with Ralph, Laila starts to notice things, things she never wanted to understand.” Check it out at Simon & Schuster.

image c. 2018 Boom! Studios

Submitted for Your Approval: A Planet of Apes

Bit of trivia you might not be aware of: In the late 1960’s Rod Serling (creator of The Twilight Zone) was the first person picked to adapt a screenplay from Pierre Boulle’s science fiction novel Planet of the Apes. Which he did — unfortunately his version (closer to Boulle’s book, featuring apes in a modern high-tech world) was considered un-filmable at the time, and a new adaptation by Michael Wilson was used instead for the famous 1968 film starring Charlton Heston. Well now, Boom! Studios have created Planet of the Apes: Visionaries, a new full-color graphic novel of Serling’s original script. Put into comic book form by Dana Gould and illustrated by Chad Lewis, it arrives in stores this August. Previews has an interview with the Boom! Studios folk all about it.

image c. 2018 Boom! Studios

A Flying Ape with a Beak. Yes.

One of the things that was almost impossible to miss at WonderCon this year was a huge display booth for Genesis II, a full color graphic novel by Allen Ling and Christian Boe. It’s a science fiction story about genetic experiments gone very, very strange, but that barely scratches the surface. The booth display featured three of the principle weird creations from the story in larger than life size, sculpted by none other than Stan Winston Studios. The graphic novel is available now as a hardcover book, and also as a download for purchase. The creators plan to release a softcover version later this year. Visit their web site to see what we’re talking about — and to order your copy.

image c. 2018 genesisiicomics.com

Nick & Judy, Back in the Day

Many thanks to our friend KeiFox for pointing this one out to us. Here’s what we learned over at the Hollywood Reporter: “Fans of Disney’s animated 2016 hit Zootopia should prepare for a return to the animal metropolis this summer, with Dark Horse Comics releasing a brand-new graphic novel based on the movie as part of its new deal with Disney. Aimed at younger readers, Disney Zootopia: Friends to the Rescue will feature two stories spotlighting young versions of both Judy Hopps and Nick Wilde and taking place before the events of the movie. Judy has to save the day — and her friend Dinah — at the Bunnyburrow County Fair, while Nick has to put his (questionable) talents to good use to give his friend Hedy the best birthday party imaginable. Both stories are written by Jimmy Gownley, with art by Leandro Ricardo da Silva, colors by Wes Dzioba, and lettering from Chris Dickey. The 48-page title will also feature special features and story-related activities.” Look for it on September 12th.

image c. 2018 Dark Horse Publishing

Once Upon A Time, A Grumpy Gnome…

Ward’s Valley is a new full-color fantasy graphic novel from IDW and Top Shelf Comics. “Ward is a grumpy gnome who only wants to be left alone. He never asked for company… but when his beautiful forest starts filling up with animals, it’s more than just grumpiness that makes him nervous. Mysterious trolls are one the loose and Ward will need all the help he can get to defend Ward’s Valley.” This is interesting to note: The art is by Brenda Hickey, known for her work on IDW’s My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic series, the the story is written by Bobby Curnow, the My Little Pony series editor. Look for it on the shelves now.

image c. 2018 Top Shelf Comics

My Boyfriend is a Bear

Look, how could we possible do better than simply the title for this one? It’s a new full-color graphic novel written by Pamela Ribon and illustrated by Cat Farris. Publishers Weekly has a review: “Ribon (Slam!) and Farris (Emily and the Strangers) collaborate to deliver a winning slice-of-life romantic comedy with a twist. After dumping her latest terrible boyfriend, 28-year-old Nora unexpectedly falls in love with an American black bear she meets in the woods. ‘The bear’ is no ordinary wild animal: He’s kind, wears a hip Arcade Fire T-shirt, and has a great fondness for juggling, cuddling, and craft beer. The two enjoy a nearly idyllic life together, despite objections from Nora’s family and friends, but when their honeymoon phase passes, Nora’s life falls apart all over again—before winter sets in, the bear must abandon her to hibernate in the mountains…” My Boyfriend is a Bear comes to us from Oni Press in mid-April.

image c. 2018 Oni Press