As the market for graphic novels grows, so does their incredible range. Here our Guildford bookshop’s own Cara Fielder with her choice of the newest graphic novels that reflect the diversity of the genre that many continue to underestimate…
Adventure Time: Mathematical Edition v. 1, Ryan North, Shelli Parline, Braden Lamb
The cult Cartoon Network show Adventure Time has branched out into the world of graphic novels and thank goodness they have because if you’re like me and adore the series then the graphic novels will have you squealing with delight. The hardback Mathematical Edition is my favourite, and includes all the amazing covers of the comic books in varying styles from numerous different artists. Quirky, fun and utterly mesmerising – the world of Finn and Jake translates perfectly into this format.
The Gigantic Beard That Was Evil, Stephen Collins
On the small yet perfectly formed island of Here everything looks perfect. The hedges are trimmed, the gates never hang and everyone looks flawless. In this little bubble there is safety, yet behind the inhabitant’s homes is the sea and the sea leads to There, an unknown entity from which you’ll never return. Dave lives a clockwork life in Here, getting up, going to work, eating, drawing his street and falling asleep but one day his normally hairless (apart from one) face explodes with an uncontrollable beard. He cuts it but is just grows back and before long it takes over his life and the entire town. Utterly surreal and visually stunning – everyone I know that’s read this graphic novel has been left grinning from ear to ear.
Neurocomic, Hana Ros, Matteo Farinella
Nobrow Press have gone and done it again, creating a breathtakingly beautiful graphical novel in Neurocomic. A tactile blue hardback with embossed gold detailing this book will certainly catch your eye. Follow the ride as the nameless lead character takes you on an educational yet fun journey through the brain’s memory caves and neuron forests, meeting giant squid and numerous other beasts. With a neuroscientist and a scientific illustrator behind this gem you won’t be disappointed.
Lighter Than My Shadow, Katie Green
As heartbreaking as it is uplifting, this brand new graphic biography from Katie Green tells the story of her troubled adolescent years. We follow her journey from a young girl hiding food, to a teenager passing out on the brink of starvation and falling into the hands of an abusive man, who betrays her trust in the worst possible way. Conveying the overwhelming claustrophobia of her eating disorder while still showing a light at the end of the tunnel for people in a similar situation, this is incredible.
Fashion Beast, Alan Moore, Malcolm McLaren
The original vision for Fashion Beast was for it to a screenplay and ultimately hit the cinemas. Born from the minds of graphic novel master Alan Moore and Sex Pistols manager Malcom McLaren – this idea was eventually abandoned before Moore then picked it up again and made into a comic book. This graphic novel contains comics 1-10 and tells the dark tale of a world out of control – yet still obsessed with fashion. Celestine is the designer of the times, a man rumored to be so horrific to look at he hides himself away. When he chooses a new lead model, Celestine’s life takes a dark turn and the fashion house will never be the same again.
If you’ve read a graphic novel recently that has blown you away tell us about it in the comments below…