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Graphic Novel

The Senses of a Dog

Here’s an interesting new hardcover graphic novel from Boom! Studios. Simply called Bear, it’s actually based on scientific research into the brains of animals.  “Bear is a service dog who would do anything for his owner and best friend Patrick who is blind. But when Bear suddenly loses his vision, he worries he’s lost his purpose in life—protecting Patrick! Following the misguided advice from some self-serving raccoons, Bear embarks on a transformative journey to regain his eyesight. Out of both necessity and survival, he learns to tap into his other senses and begins to see the world from a new perspective that is at times more rich and colorful than the world he’s always known.” Written by Ben Queen (Disney/Pixar’s Cars 2 and Cars 3) and illustrated by Joe Todd-Stanton (A Mouse Called Julian), Bear is available now from Simon & Schuster.

image c. 2020 Boom! Studios

Free from the Zoo to You

If you haven’t heard yet: Free Comic Book Day is on this year — but in a different way. Now it’s Free Comic Book Summer, where the samplers will be passed out in batches over several weeks, rather than all at once, as a way to prevent crowding at comic book stores. And here’s one we found right off the bat… Brett Bean is an illustrator and character designer who is a “frequent face” at comic book convention artist alleys. Well now he’s come out with his own series of full-color graphic novels called Zoo Patrol Squad. “The lion has gone missing? The king cobra has vanished? Sounds like a job for the Zoo Patrol Squad! Timid Fennlock Fox and outgoing Penny the Pig team up for their first adventure as they look for clues to track down the missing animals in their usually peaceful zoo.” The free Zoo Patrol Squad sampler is available now at a comic shop near you (wear a mask and visit safely!) and the first graphic novel in the series, Kingdom Caper, is available for order on line. Oh, and visit Brett’s web site to see more of what he’s worked on too.

image c. 2020 Penguin Workshop

Stilton Goes Strange

It’s the internationally famous mouse investigator Geronimo Stilton — like you’ve never seen him before, thanks to Tom Angleberger and The Sewer Rat Stink.  From the Cheshire Public Library review: “Angleberger, best known for his Origami Yoda series, adapts the escapades about the renowned rat reporter into a graphic novel. A horrible stench has invaded New Mouse City, and citizens are leaving in droves. So Geronimo and his old pal private detective Hercule Poirat venture into the smelly sewers of Mouse Island, where they discover a secret society of rats plotting to take over the world.” With an original story by Elisabetta Dami, The Sewer Rat Stink is available now in hardcover.

image c. 2020 Scholastic, Inc.

Lizard in a Zoot Suit

Once again, they keep giving us titles that we just can’t top! Lizard In A Zoot Suit is a new full-color graphic novel written and illustrated by Marco Finnegan. “Los Angeles, 1943. It’s the era of the Zoot Suit Riots, and Flaca and Cuata have a problem. It’s bigger than being grounded by their strict mother. It’s bigger than tensions with the soldiers stationed nearby. And it’s shaped like a five-foot-tall lizard. When a lost member of an unknown underground species needs help, the sisters must scramble to keep their new friend away from a corrupt military scientist—but they’ll do it in style.” Lizard is available now from Lerner Publishing.

image c. 2020 Lerner Publishing

Creatures of Science — Get One Today!

GenPet is a new full-color science fiction adventure graphic novel, written by Damian and illustrated by Alex Fuentes. “In the year 2036, advances in genetic engineering have made it possible to create personalized pets genetically designed and linked to their owners. These ‘Gen Pets’ are still a toy for the elite, including young Nat Kanan’s dad, who is the new owner of the New York Knicks. But he might have another reason to buy little Nat such an extravagant pet: Protection. It soon becomes clear that Gen Pet ‘Niko’ was designed to be Nat’s ultimate bodyguard, with talents that attract the attention of the local mafia boss who has other ideas about how to put those skills to use…” It’s available now from Magnetic Press. Take a look at the preview over at Pop Cult HQ.

image c. 2020 Magnetic Press

Aw… Fooey!

Keeping in the realm of graphic novels for young readers, next up we have Baloney and Friends, written and illustrated by award-winning creator Greg Pizzoli. “Meet Baloney! He’s the star of this book, along with his best buddies: Empathetic Peanut the horse, sensible Bizz the bumblebee, and grumpy Krabbit — he’d rather not be here, but what can you do? In this graphic novel for newly independent readers, Baloney and friends step into the spotlight and embody all the charm of childhood in three short tales and three mini-comics that invite readers to join the fun! Giggle with Baloney as he performs some questionable magic, give him a boost when a case of the blues gets him down, cheer him on as he braves the swimming pool, and at the end, learn to draw all the characters with clear step-by-step instructions!” It’s available now in hardcover.

image c. 2020 Little, Brown Books

No Not THAT Fox and Rabbit!

… though you could be forgiven for thinking so.  Fox & Rabbit is a new graphic novel for young readers — the first foray into comic storytelling for children’s book author Beth Ferry. “Easygoing Fox and anxious Rabbit seem like total opposites. But, somehow, they make the perfect pair! Whether searching for hidden treasure or planting a garden in their own backyard, Fox and Rabbit find everyday magic at every turn. On this first adventure, the pair will discover some new favorite things like sunsets, dandelions, and cotton candy. And they’ll face new fears like heights, swimming, and (poisonous!) frogs. Thankfully, there’s nothing Fox and Rabbit can’t do together!” Illustrated by Gergely Dudas, it’s available now in hardcover from Abrams Books.

image c. 2020 Abrams Books

He’s Going Into Hyper-Nation

And more bears — this time in a very different setting. Space Bear is a wide-format full-color graphic novel from Boom! Studios, written and illustrated by Ethan Young (Major Lazer). “Pilgrim Finch is an adventurous astronaut bear who explores the cosmos with a mission to bring samples of life back to his home planet. But when he crash lands on a new planet full of surprises and danger around every corner, Pilgrim will be forced to question his orders and learn that there’s only one mission that matters – compassion to all living creatures no matter the stakes!” The book is available in hardcover later this month — and check out the preview pages over at Comics Beat as well.

image c. 2020 Kaboom!

Don’t Come Between the Bear and His Girl

Kodi is a new full-color graphic novel written and illustrated by Jared Cullum — an artist known for his lush watercolor paintings. “Katya and her Meema are spending another summer at their cottage in Alaska, when a chance accident leaves Katya face-to-face with the biggest creature she’s ever seen… an enormous kodiak bear with a gentle heart and a knack for fishing. But when Katya must suddenly return home to Seattle, the two are torn apart, leaving Kodi to do whatever it takes to reunite with his fragile human friend. It’s a wild journey packed with breathtaking views, brave new companions, and adventure around every turn.” Kodi Volume 1 is available later this month from Top Shelf.

image c. 2020 Top Shelf