• Trusty Henchman

Upcoming Comics Spotlight: All-Ages/YA

This batch features a trio of tree-centric animal tales, a new Shuri and T'Challa original graphic novel from Scholastic, Dan McCloskey's debut graphic novel about best friends and monsters from other universes, a tale off hidden magic and mapmakers, and a tale of a 10-year-old 's crucial mission to save humanity from extinction.

 

BENEATH TREES HC 01 AUTUMN MISTER GRUMPH

(W) Dav (A/CA) Dav


Winter is fast approaching and all the animals in the forest are in full preparation: storing food and provisions, dining on the last worms with the neighbors, etc... All the animals but one: grumpy badger Mr Grumpf just can't finish sweeping the dead leaves off his doorstep with everyone coming by to disturb him! Grumpf!

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BENEATH TREES HC VOL 02 WINTER CHILLS


(W) Dav (A/CA) Dav


Winter is here, and snow covers the woods like a cold blanket. Mr. Fox has his enormous scarf to keep him warm, but it is almost TOO big -- he can't help but trip over it and get caught on tree branches all the time. But as embarrassing as that is, it is even more humiliating when trying to catch the eye of a beautiful lady!

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BENEATH TREES HC VOL 03 FINE SUMMER


(W) Dav (A/CA) Dav


It's summer, and the laughter of children echoes under the trees. But for some of the older animals, the frivolous abandon of childhood is far behind them. Old Mr. Owl and Mr. Toad get the crazy idea to relive some of their youth if that's even possible anymore...

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Why these caught my eye:

I had missed the solicits for the first two volumes months ago, but when the third volume popped up on my radar I wanted to highlight the set. I love the seasonal themes and the art and story look incredibly charming. Plus they're from Magnetic Press so the printing quality will be top notch. You can check out some more previews here.

 

BLACK PANTHER SHURI & TCHALLA INTO HEARTLANDS HC GN

(W) Roseanne A. Brown, Natacha Bustos, Claudia Aguirre, Dika Araujo (A/CA) Claudia Aguirre


Shuri and T'Challa set out to remove a curse from Wakanda in this action-packed, totally original graphic novel!


Twelve-year-old Shuri is a lot of things. Scientist. Princess. All around cooler person than her pain-in-the-butt big brother T'Challa. Shuri knows she could do so much more to help Wakanda, but everyone is obsessed with the prince because he's the next Black Panther. That is, until Soul Washing Day, one of the most important rituals of Wakandan society. When an argument between T'Challa and Shuri leads to one of Shuri's inventions accidentally destroying the sacred ceremony site, chaos reigns instead of prosperity. Suddenly the people of Wakanda, including her mother the queen, are becoming sick! Could this be a curse from the ancestors? Desperate to save her mother, Shuri dives into research and finds an answer hidden deep in an ancient children's myth. It may be nothing more than a fantasy, but with the sickness spreading each day, the young princess must trust her instincts and travel deep into the mysterious Heartlands to save her family and her kingdom.


Joining Shuri on her journey is none other than a meddling T'Challa. If Shuri and T'Challa can set aside their jealousy and resentment of each other long enough to survive this journey, they might just discover that they are far more powerful together than they could ever be apart. But if they can't face their fears in the Heartlands and lift the so-called curse, it may not be just the end for their family, but the end of Wakanda as they know it. No pressure, right?

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Why this caught my eye:

I'm just incredibly happy to see stuff coming out of the Scholastic/Marvel partnership at a regular pace finally.

 

CLOUD TOWN HC GN

(W) Daniel McCloskey (A) Daniel McCloskey


An exciting middle-grade graphic novel about best friends, giant robots, and monsters from another universe!


In Dan McCloskey's debut graphic novel, best friends Pen and Olive live in Cloud Town, an impoverished community on Floating Island, a mysterious landmass that drifts above the earth and happens to sit dangerously close to the Rip-a tear in the fabric of the universe. No big deal or anything.


While Pen is brash and brave, Olive is quiet, kind, and also fearful of bullies at school. That is, at least until the day they are nearly squashed by a Care Corp Storm Catcher, a giant android built to protect Cloud Town and the rest of Floating Island from Hurricanes, monsters that travel across the Rip. It isn't the event itself that changes the girls' relationship. It isn't the fear of death that drives them apart, or the questionable decision-making that leads Pen to drag Olive into the cab of the crashed robot. It's the fact that Olive can move the 90-foot-tall machine and Pen can't. Care Corp recruits Olive to train as a pilot, so that she can protect Floating Island when the next attack comes. It's a role reversal, for which neither of the girls are prepared.

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Why this caught my eye:

McCloskey's art style is giving me some great early aughts indy comic vibes and the story sounds like a lot of fun.

 

MAPMAKERS HC GN VOL 01 MAPMAKERS & LOST MAGIC

(W) Cameron Chittock (A) Amanda Castillo


A young girl finds herself faced with an impossible choice-run away from her beloved valley, or unleash a hidden magic and become a Mapmaker to save her home from its new overlords.


For centuries, the Mapmakers kept peace in the Valley, but they've long since disappeared. Now the Night Coats hold power with an iron grip-there are only rules, punishments, and consequences. Until one night, on the run from the Night Coats (again), after breaking another rule (again), Alidade stumbles upon a secret door leading to a magical hideaway that belongs to the Mapmakers. There, she finds a map of her home, and accidentally brings to life Blue, a magical creature called a memri who is meant to protect the Valley. Blue needs Alidade's help to find the Mapmakers and save the Valley from the Night Coats!


But the Mapmakers are long gone.


Alidade has a choice: leave the Valley like she's always wanted...or become a Mapmaker and save the only home she's ever known.

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Why this caught my eye:

I pretty much just instantly fell in love with Castillo's art style.

 

LITTLE MONARCHS HC GN

(W) Jonathan Case (A) Jonathan Case


This graphic novel adventure tells the story of 10-year-old Elvie and her crucial mission to save humanity from extinction after a sun shift has changed life on earth as we know it.


It's been fifty years since a sun shift wiped out nearly all mammal life across the earth.


Towns and cities are abandoned relics, autonomous machines maintain roadways, and the world is slowly being reclaimed by nature. Isolated pockets of survivors keep to themselves in underground sites, hiding from the lethal sunlight by day and coming above ground at night.


10-year-old Elvie and her caretaker, Flora, a biologist, are the only two humans who can survive during daylight because Flora made an incredible discovery - a way to make an antidote to sun sickness using the scales from monarch butterfly wings. Unfortunately, it can only be made in small quantities and has a short shelf life.


Free to travel during the day, Elvie and Flora follow monarchs as they migrate across the former Western United States, constantly making new medicine for themselves while trying to find a way to make a vaccine they can share with everyone. Will they discover a way to go from a treatment to a cure and preserve the remains of humanity, or will their efforts be thwarted by disaster and the very people they are trying to save?

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Why this caught my eye:

After reading Case's book The New Deal I'm pretty down for anything he's putting out.

 

That's it for this batch, we'll hit up some action/adventure on the next round!

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