Stardust

Stardust was quite a good read. It’s a fairy tale but for mature teens and older readers. Be advised that there is some graphic language. And Yes they do ultimately live happily ever after. Gaiman is a central figure in the emergence of the "graphic novel," a genre that combines novelistic storylines with comic-book graphics and is well known for his many other works such as the graphic serial novel "Sandman" : and other works.
It’s exciting to learn that Stardust has been made into a movie that is coming out this summer with a star-studded cast including Robert De Niro, Peter O'Toole and narrated by Ian McKellen. Hopefully the movie will remain faithful to the story line. There is also a graphic novel version of this book illustrated by Charles Vess.
The Ann Arbor District library has a great collection of graphic novels with collections for youth, teens and adults.

Babymouse!

Jennifer L. Holm has teamed up with her brother Matthew to create Babymouse, an adorable and imaginative comic starring a school-aged mouse and her best friend Wilson the Weasel (who both happen to love monster movies and cupcakes). Anyone who has been through grade school can relate to Babymouse and her problems with meatloaf lunches, lockers, and the incredibly mean Felicia Furrypaws. She gets through it all with the help of her friends and her favorite books. Drawn very simply in black and white with some pink thrown in for flair (and I could have sworn I saw some Ed Emberley animals roaming the school halls).

RARRARG!*

* Patrick the Wolf Boy

Patrick is a young boy who likes to do all the things that young boys do, only with his own flair—Patrick is a werewolf. He communicates by growling, but his parents and friends understand him just fine. Artist Art Baltazar and writer Franco Aurelian have created a cute and amusing character drawn in a style that pays tribute to 1950s Charles Schulz (Patrick’s shirt is even an invert of Charlie Brown’s).
If you would like to meet the artist, Art Baltazar will be making an appearance at the Motor City Comic Con May 18-20.

Avatar @ Animanga Club Thursday, April 12!

What's the coolest type of airbending? Join us this Thursday @ the Northeast Branch from 7-8:30 as we discuss an American spin on anime, Avatar The Last Airbender. We'll watch the DVD of Book 1: Water. Not a fan of Avatar? Come anyway! You can talk about ANYTHING relating to anime, manga, Japan - etc. Snacks and drinks will also be served. See you there!

Plastic Man is Back!

Kyle Baker has re-visited the Golden Age Plastic Man in his Eisner Award winning series. First released in 2004, issues 1-6 have been collected into one volume Plastic Man: On the Lam. Follow Patrick “Eel” Obrien from his days of crime to his transformation into Plastic Man and then see what happens when his former identity is framed for murder. Baker’s wonderfully energetic style and sense of humor translate beautifully to this character. Be on the lookout for surprise characters from Plastic Man’s past and members of the Justice League acting a bit out of character.

Maison Ikkoku

Rumiko Takahashi might just be the wealthiest woman in Japan—if you have read the Maison Ikkoku series then you know why. Her characters are well developed, interesting, and well loved all over the world.

Yusaku Godai, a starving student, moves into a boarding house run by the beautiful, young, and widowed Kyoko Otonashi. Young Godai quickly falls in love only to find that he has many rivals for her affection (including a dog named after her late husband).

After you’ve read the book, don’t forget to check out the anime version.

Grease Monkey: a tale of growing up in orbit

On those days when you’re trying to figure out how the adult world works wouldn’t it be great to have an 800-pound gorilla on your side? Cadet Robin Plotnik, is about to get just that. He is assigned to work with mechanic Mac Gimbensky, for whom fixing space fighters is a passion and an art. Mac’s “creative” work style has chased off many a cadet but Robin manages to survive his first day as Mac’s grease monkey. In no time the two become good friends.

Together, this unlikely duo maintains the fighter craft for the all-women Barbarian Squadron, which constantly competes against other fighter jocks. Full of adventure, romance, and humor Grease Monkey will engage you to the last page.

Happy Birthday, Mr. Groening!

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Matt Groening, cartoonist and creator of The Simpsons, turns 53 today.

He began drawing and self-publishing the comic strip Life in Hell in 1977. This got the attention of Producer James L. Brooks, and led to the creation of the television series The Simpsons, which debuted as shorts on The Tracey Ullman Show in 1987. Futurama began airing in 1999 (and was co-created by Groening and David X. Cohen).

The Simpsons Movie is due out this July.

Moomin!

Join Moomin, the beautiful Snorkmaiden, and their friends as they send bad language (with legs) to Aunt Jane, encounter exploding pancakes, and introduce pirates to gardening. Tove Jansson has created a rare treasure that speaks to all generations and all ages. Moomin sums up Jansson's philosophy best when he tells his friend Sniff:

"I only want to live in peace, plant potatoes, and dream!"

Jansson first introduced the Moomins (Scandinavian troll-creatures that resemble white hippopotami) in books that she wrote and illustrated, beginning in 1945 with the book The Moomins and the Great Flood. More Moomintroll books followed, including Comet in Moominland, Finn Family Moomintroll, and Moominpappa's memoirs. These were so popular that she was approached by the London Evening News to do a daily comic strip featuring the Moomin characters. Drawn and Quarterly has released (for the first time in North America) a collection of these strips. This first volume includes four adventures: Brigands, Family Life, Moomin on the Riviera and Moomin's Desert Island.

1001 Nights of Snowfall

For those of you already familiar with Bill Willingham’s Fables, you probably don’t need my recommendation to check out this anthology. For those of you not familiar with the Vertigo/ DC Comics series, 1001 Nights of Snowfall is a great introduction to the characters that make up Fabletown.

Snow White is sent as an envoy to solicit the help of King Shahryar, an Arabian Sultan, against the Adversary, enemy to all of Fablekind. She soon finds herself entrapped by the Sultan and must fill the nights with stories to beguile him and save her own life. Backstories of some familiar characters are told, which Willingham approaches with more detail than was given in the original tales. Find out what happened to the witch after Hansel and Gretel pushed her into the oven; the unexpected twist in the tale of Snow White after she marries her prince (she’s more independent than Disney portrayed); and why the Big Bad Wolf is so big, bad, and bitter. This book is also a splendid showcase for the talents of the many artists who contributed.

Please remember, though this book does retell the tales of beloved fairy tale characters, this book is not intended for children.

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