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Comments for Weekly Geeks 2010-19: Getting Graphic

I'm a Weekly GeekWeekly Geeks 2010-19: Getting Graphic 05/29/10

Do you read graphic novels or memoirs? Who are your favorite authors? Which books do you recommend?

If you haven't read any, why not?

Some people have the impression that graphic novels are glorified comic books, are unsophisticated or don't qualify as "serious" literature. What do you think? If you track your book numbers, do you count a graphic novel as a book read?

For the last two years I've been a second round judge for the Cybils in the graphic novel category. So yes, I read graphic novels. You can find all of my graphic novel reviews here.

I started reading them in earnest about seven years ago. I started with manga. The first series I read was Chobits and I got through volume 8. I read them via Bookcrossing on a book ring, meaning that the books were sent to me and then I sent them on to the next person on a list as I finished them. Ultimately the books returned home to the person who started the ring.

The only book I've read that I'm positive is a memoir presented as a graphic novel is Kampung Boy by Lat (Mohammed Nor Khalid).

The reason I only started reading graphic novels in my 30s is one of ignorance. I didn't know they existed. The bookstores and libraries I frequented didn't carry them. Even though Neil Gaiman is one of my favorite authors and he started with graphic novels, I didn't hear about him until Stardust. I have since been going back and reading many of his graphic novels (although I haven't started the Sandman series yet).

As a child I only read comic strips in the newspaper because comic books weren't carried in any of the book stores I went to and we didn't have a dedicated comic book store within walking distance of where I lived. On the rare times I could get my hands comic books, they were Archie and Friends, Spider-Man, and Scrooge McDuck.

I have a few graphic novels I've read but still need to review.

They are:

  • Are You Afraid Yet?: The Science Behind Scary Stuff by Stephen James O'Meara
  • Bone Volume 2: The Great Cow Race by Jeff Smith
  • Bone, Volume 3: Eyes of the Storm by Jeff Smith
  • Bone, Volume 4: The Dragonslayer by Jeff Smith
  • The Broken Ear by Hergé
  • The Dreamer: The Consequence of Nathan Hale, Part 1 by Lora Innes
  • The Egyptian Jukebox: A Conundrum by Nick Bantock
  • Grampa's Zombie BBQ by Kirk Scroggs
  • Gravitation Collection 2 by Maki Murakami
  • Here is Greenwood Volume 1 by Yukie Nasu
  • Jellaby: Monster in the City by Kean Soo
  • Ottoline Goes to School by Chris Riddell
  • Ottoline and the Yellow Cat by Chris Riddell
  • Owly Volume 1: The Way Home & The Bittersweet Summer by Andy Runton
  • Treehorn's Treasure by Florence Parry Heide
  • Treehorn's Wish by Florence Parry Heide

Comments (12)


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Comment #1: Sunday, May, 30, 2010 at 04:59:10


You are obviously an authority on what is good about GNs Puss. I have to admit though they are just not my cup of tea. Perhaps I've just never come across very good ones.

Comment #2: Monday, May 31, 2010 at 11:13:45


I'm not an authority, just an enthusiast. The first round judges make the process very easy for the Cybils.

Comment #3: Sunday, May, 30, 2010 at 08:19:00


Thanks for the Graphic Novel list and link. I will check those out!

Comment #4: Monday, May 31, 2010 at 11:42:18


You're welcome. Happy reading.

Comment #5: Sunday, May, 30, 2010 at 09:15:21


The "Ottoline" series is considered a graphic novel? I thought it would be juvenile fiction instead... I've read "Ottoline goes to school" and liked it - I love Chris Riddell's illustrations! And the "Bone" series is a perennial favourite at work!

I started late (and in the same vein!) as well! It wasn't until I started working at the library (25), that I happened to pick up a manga one day...

Comment #6: Monday, May 31, 2010 at 11:44:15


The Ottoline books are in that gray area between novels and graphic novels. I'm counting them as hybrids since the author started as an illustrator and because there are more graphic novel elements to the books than the Frankie Pickle series which is classified as a hybrid.

Comment #7: Sunday, May, 30, 2010 at 10:38:42


I've only just started reading graphic novels. Yes, I count them among my books read! I've even made a new category tag for them.

Comment #8: Monday, May 31, 2010 at 11:47:03


I count them in my books read too.

Comment #9: Sunday, May, 30, 2010 at 11:32:11


Years ago while glancing at a friend's the Sandman books I was introduced to the name Gaiman. Much later I read American Gods and became a fan. I still have yet to read that series. It always just slips through my fingers like dreams.

Comment #10: Monday, May 31, 2010 at 11:49:13


My husband has most of The Sandman books but I haven't read them yet.

Comment #11: Wednesday, June, 2, 2010 at 12:58:56

Karen Russell

I recently read "The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, vol. 1" and was impressed that it really wasn't "just" a comic book. It had connections to all sorts of other literature and tried to do something entirely different. I was disappointed that it perpetuated comic-like stereotypes of women, but it was still better than I expected. I think people should give them a try with an open mind. Even though I don't expect to read any others, I was glad I tried one because it did change my perceptions.

Comment #12: Saturday, June 5, 2010 at 09:24:25


The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Volume 1 was one of the first graphic novels I read. I finished it before I was exclusively blogging about books so I posted my review on Bookcrossing instead. Thanks for the reminder! I had completely forgotten to mention the book when I wrote my post.

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