I’m going to start off by saying that graphic novels are so much more than just superhero comics or manga (although those are awesome, and you should read those too!). There are a lot of graphic novels out there that don’t get the love and attention they deserve. For this post, I’d like to touch on two graphic novels that are amazing. These are available at our library, so come and check them out!
The Undertaking of Lily Chen
By Danica Novgorodoff
Let me start off by giving you the premise of this story: in some parts of rural China, people are selling the corpses of females. Why, you ask? Well it’s all part of a custom called “ghost marriages”. In this ancient tradition, husbands and wives are meant to share a grave, and if a man dies unmarried, essentially a piece of him is missing. To solve this problem, families will buy the dead body of a woman, marry the two dead people in a ceremony, and then bury them together. Mhmm that’s right! That’s only the beginning, friends. You can use your imagination to figure out just how people are “collecting” these women. Or you can read this graphic novel and find out for yourself! Part laugh-out-loud funny and part deeply moving and heavyhearted, this graphic novel is also paired with beautiful artwork. I hope you give it a chance; you won’t regret it. In fact, you might check out more than once!
By Jeff Lemire, Emi Lenox, and Jordie Bellaire
Now it’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of Jeff Lemire. He’s written some great stuff (Essex County, The Descender and Sweet Tooth series, and a lot more) and Plutona is one of the great Young Adult graphic novels that he has published recently. Not only is the artwork super cool, but the story is just spot on. Speaking of the story, let’s get into that. Imagine you have a favorite superhero (mine’s Batman) and you and some friends uh, you find him or her…dead. In a forest. You are seemingly the only ones who know this secret. What do you do in this situation? That’s the dilemma that Teddy, Dianne, Mie, Mike, and Ray find themselves in. This is a superhero tale with a twist, and I’m betting you’ll enjoy this graphic novel. It’s one of those that are really hard to put down. Good luck with that!