A comic book recommendation: The Epic City: The World on the Streets of Calcutta by Kushanava Choudhury

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2DrMXkt.
…The Epic City is a wonderful, beautifully written and even more beautifully observed love letter to Calcutta’s greatness: to its high culture, its music and film, its festivals, its people, its cuisine, its urban rhythms and, above all, to its rooted Bengaliness.
Book description from amazon.com:
A masterful and entirely fresh portrait of great hopes and dashed dreams in a mythical city from a major new literary voiceEverything that could possibly be wrong with a city was wrong with Calcutta.When Kushanava Choudhury arrived in New Jersey at the age of twelve, he had already migrated halfway around the world four times. After graduating from Princeton, he moved back to the world which his immigrant parents had abandoned, to a city built between a river and a swamp, where the moisture-drenched air swarms with mosquitos after sundown. Once the capital of the British Raj, and then India’s industrial and cultural hub, by 2001 Calcutta was clearly past its prime. Why, his relatives beseeched him, had he returned? Surely, he could have moved to Delhi, Bombay or Bangalore, where a new Golden Age of consumption was being born. Yet fifteen million people still lived in Calcutta. Working for the Statesman, its leading English newspaper, Kushanava Choudhury found the streets of his childhood unchanged by time. Shouting hawkers still overran the footpaths, fish-sellers squatted on bazaar floors; politics still meant barricades and bus burnings, while Communist ministers travelled in motorcades. Sifting through the chaos for the stories that never make the papers, Kushanava Choudhury paints a soulful, compelling portrait of the everyday lives that make Calcutta. Written with humanity, wit and insight, The Epic City is an unforgettable depiction of an era, and a city which is a world unto itself.
The book is rated 4.00/5 at goodreads.com, from 68 ratings. See 15 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2CUs2W0.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2CUstzC.

A comic book recommendation: Boundless by Jillian Tamaki

A critic review (source NPR) can be read at: http://n.pr/2C2Kn3v.
But though such elements drive these stories, they never seem to shackle Boundless to the present. Instead, Tamaki’s existential wistfulness lifts text messages and memes into the realm of archetype.
Book description from Google Books:
APPEARED ON BEST OF THE YEAR LISTS FROM NPR, PUBLISHERS WEEKLY, WASHINGTON POST, VULTURE, BOOKLIST, AND MOREThe cartoonist of This One Summer and SuperMutant Magic Academy explores the virtual and IRL world of contemporary women via a lens both surreal and wryJenny becomes obsessed with a strange “mirror Facebook,” which presents an alternate, possibly better, version of herself. Helen finds her clothes growing baggy, her shoes looser, and as she shrinks away to nothingness, the world around her recedes as well. The animals of the city briefly open their minds to us, and we see the world as they do. A mysterious music file surfaces on the internet and forms the basis of a utopian society–or is it a cult? Boundless is at once fantastical and realist, playfully hinting at possible transcendence: from one’s culture, one’s relationship, oneself. This collection of short stories is a showcase for the masterful blend of emotion and humour of award-winning cartoonist Jillian Tamaki.
The book is rated 3.62/5 at goodreads.com, from 815 ratings. See 116 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2C2KrAh.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2C255k6.

A comic book recommendation: Boundless by Jillian Tamaki

A critic review (source NPR) can be read at: http://n.pr/2C2Kn3v.
But though such elements drive these stories, they never seem to shackle Boundless to the present. Instead, Tamaki’s existential wistfulness lifts text messages and memes into the realm of archetype.
Book description from Google Books:
APPEARED ON BEST OF THE YEAR LISTS FROM NPR, PUBLISHERS WEEKLY, WASHINGTON POST, VULTURE, BOOKLIST, AND MOREThe cartoonist of This One Summer and SuperMutant Magic Academy explores the virtual and IRL world of contemporary women via a lens both surreal and wryJenny becomes obsessed with a strange “mirror Facebook,” which presents an alternate, possibly better, version of herself. Helen finds her clothes growing baggy, her shoes looser, and as she shrinks away to nothingness, the world around her recedes as well. The animals of the city briefly open their minds to us, and we see the world as they do. A mysterious music file surfaces on the internet and forms the basis of a utopian society–or is it a cult? Boundless is at once fantastical and realist, playfully hinting at possible transcendence: from one’s culture, one’s relationship, oneself. This collection of short stories is a showcase for the masterful blend of emotion and humour of award-winning cartoonist Jillian Tamaki.
The book is rated 3.61/5 at goodreads.com, from 808 ratings. See 116 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2C2KrAh.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2C255k6.

A comic book recommendation: Throwaways Volume 1 by Caitlin Kittredge

A critic review (source NPR) can be read at: http://n.pr/2BZlF45.
Kittredge’s brisk, economical storytelling snares the reader most effectively. Creations like a Machiavellian grandma, a sadistic psychic scientist and a mysterious girl who looks like a ghost all make for a rollicking good time.
Book description from Google Books:
Abby Palmer and Dean Logan are two broken people with one thing in common:they’re both victims of a brutal government mind control experiment–and they’rethe only two who escaped alive. Abby is a homeless drifter, and Dean is tryingto outrun the horrors of his past when the program finds them again…and theybecome the other’s only chance to survive. The program gifted them both withabilities beyond a normal human’s imagination–and as Dean and Abby realize whatwas done to them, they’re determined to use those abilities to destroy theprogram and its sinister architect, Dr. Elizabeth Ostrander, once and forall. A brand new science fiction spy thriller by the creative team ofCAITLIN KITTREDGE and STEVEN SANDERS. Collects issues 1 through4.
The book is rated 2.88/5 at goodreads.com, from 48 ratings. See 7 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2D6ylph.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2D5Og6Y.

A comic book recommendation: Throwaways Volume 1 by Caitlin Kittredge

A critic review (source NPR) can be read at: http://n.pr/2BZlF45.
Kittredge’s brisk, economical storytelling snares the reader most effectively. Creations like a Machiavellian grandma, a sadistic psychic scientist and a mysterious girl who looks like a ghost all make for a rollicking good time.
Book description from Google Books:
Abby Palmer and Dean Logan are two broken people with one thing in common:they’re both victims of a brutal government mind control experiment–and they’rethe only two who escaped alive. Abby is a homeless drifter, and Dean is tryingto outrun the horrors of his past when the program finds them again…and theybecome the other’s only chance to survive. The program gifted them both withabilities beyond a normal human’s imagination–and as Dean and Abby realize whatwas done to them, they’re determined to use those abilities to destroy theprogram and its sinister architect, Dr. Elizabeth Ostrander, once and forall. A brand new science fiction spy thriller by the creative team ofCAITLIN KITTREDGE and STEVEN SANDERS. Collects issues 1 through4.
The book is rated 2.88/5 at goodreads.com, from 48 ratings. See 7 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2D6ylph.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2D5Og6Y.

A comic book recommendation: Roller Girl by Victoria Jamieson

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2j6lsnh.
Astrid, by turns sardonic, brave and utterly bewildered, is perceptively drawn. And the contact sport of roller derby (relatively little known in the UK) makes for a fascinating setting.
Book description from Google Books:
The Newbery Honor Award Winner and New York Times bestseller Roller Girl is a heartwarming graphic novel about friendship and surviving junior high through the power of roller derby–perfect for fans of Raina Telgemeier’s Smile! For most of her twelve years, Astrid has done everything with her best friend Nicole. But after Astrid falls in love with roller derby and signs up for derby camp, Nicole decides to go to dance camp instead. And so begins the most difficult summer of Astrid’s life as she struggles to keep up with the older girls at camp, hang on to the friend she feels slipping away, and cautiously embark on a new friendship. As the end of summer nears and her first roller derby bout (and junior high!) draws closer, Astrid realizes that maybe she is strong enough to handle the bout, a lost friendship, and middle school… in short, strong enough to be a roller girl. In this graphic novel debut that earned a Newbery Honor and five starred reviews, real-life derby girl Victoria Jamieson has created an inspiring coming-of-age story about friendship, perseverence, and girl power!
The book is rated 4.28/5 at goodreads.com, from 21765 ratings. See 2784 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2BopEWs.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2BpKcOn.

A comic book recommendation: Livestock by Hannah Berry

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2Bpul22.
Knowing and savage, Livestock is that rare thing: a comic book that has only grown more essential in the gap between its inception and its publication.
Book description from Google Books:
Excitement is building for this year’s Twammies and Clementine Darling is hotly tipped to win Best Female Singer and Political Spokesperson! The government is embarrassed about the leak of a confidential email exchange, but have you heard about Clementine’s new beau Devon Ayre? Yes, human cloning appears to have been legalised, but wasn’t Devon once together with Clementine’s arch rival Coral Jerome? And does it really matter what dubious corporate connections helped get this bill into place while Clementine and Coral are locking horns in a violent feud? Livestock is a razor-sharp satire on our relationship with the media from critically acclaimed graphic novelist Hannah Berry. In the fight for the public’s attention, why let public interest get in the way?
The book is rated 3.63/5 at goodreads.com, from 30 ratings. See 4 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2j5Ytc2.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2j7Ep9b.

A comic book recommendation: Roller Girl by Victoria Jamieson

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2j6lsnh.
Astrid, by turns sardonic, brave and utterly bewildered, is perceptively drawn. And the contact sport of roller derby (relatively little known in the UK) makes for a fascinating setting.
Book description from Google Books:
The Newbery Honor Award Winner and New York Times bestseller Roller Girl is a heartwarming graphic novel about friendship and surviving junior high through the power of roller derby–perfect for fans of Raina Telgemeier’s Smile! For most of her twelve years, Astrid has done everything with her best friend Nicole. But after Astrid falls in love with roller derby and signs up for derby camp, Nicole decides to go to dance camp instead. And so begins the most difficult summer of Astrid’s life as she struggles to keep up with the older girls at camp, hang on to the friend she feels slipping away, and cautiously embark on a new friendship. As the end of summer nears and her first roller derby bout (and junior high!) draws closer, Astrid realizes that maybe she is strong enough to handle the bout, a lost friendship, and middle school… in short, strong enough to be a roller girl. In this graphic novel debut that earned a Newbery Honor and five starred reviews, real-life derby girl Victoria Jamieson has created an inspiring coming-of-age story about friendship, perseverence, and girl power!
The book is rated 4.28/5 at goodreads.com, from 21726 ratings. See 2783 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2BopEWs.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2BpKcOn.

A comic book recommendation: The Spectacular Sisterhood of Superwomen: Awesome Female Characters from Comic Book History by Hope Nicholson

A critic review (source National Post arts) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2zFWP8l.
This curation is the highlight of Nicholson’s storytelling, and it builds a momentum that buoys our current decade with the hope of even more awesome superwomen to come.
Book description from Google Books:
A woman’s place is saving the universe.   Think comic books can’t feature strong female protagonists? Think again! In The Spectacular Sisterhood of Superwomen you’ll meet the most fascinating exemplars of the powerful, compelling, entertaining, and heroic female characters who’ve populated comic books from the very beginning. This spectacular sisterhood includes costumed crimebusters like Miss Fury, super-spies like Tiffany Sinn, sci-fi pioneers like Gale Allen, and even kid troublemakers like Little Lulu. With vintage art, publication details, a decade-by-decade survey of industry trends and women’s roles in comics, and spotlights on iconic favorites like Wonder Woman and Ms. Marvel, The Spectacular Sisterhood of Superwomen proves that not only do strong female protagonists belong in comics, they’ve always been there.
The book is rated 4.04/5 at goodreads.com, from 178 ratings. See 57 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2iQPBX4.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2zCweZx.

A comic book recommendation: Real Friends by Shannon Hale

A critic review (source NY Times) can be read at: http://nyti.ms/2iGpm5h.
These detailed memories of elementary school will ring hilariously true to adult readers who grew up with lace Madonna gloves, Michael Jackson, phones with cords, and dreams of being either Wonder Woman or a Dallas Cowboys cheerleader.
Book description from Google Books:
“Fresh and funny.” —New York Times Book ReviewNewbery Honor author Shannon Hale and New York Times bestselling illustrator LeUyen Pham join forces in this graphic memoir about how hard it is to find your real friends—and why it’s worth the journey.When best friends are not forever . . . Shannon and Adrienne have been best friends ever since they were little. But one day, Adrienne starts hanging out with Jen, the most popular girl in class and the leader of a circle of friends called The Group. Everyone in The Group wants to be Jen’s #1, and some girls would do anything to stay on top . . . even if it means bullying others.Now every day is like a roller coaster for Shannon. Will she and Adrienne stay friends? Can she stand up for herself? And is she in The Group—or out?Parents Magazine Best Graphic Novel of 2017
The book is rated 4.10/5 at goodreads.com, from 5013 ratings. See 928 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2hebY8j.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2hcYd9K.