Sunday, May 08, 2005

Top 10 Non-Superhero Graphic Novels

I got hooked on graphic novels about three years ago. The first one I tried was a Batman title, and though I still enjoy a lot of superhero stories, I try to look for the non-superhero stories these days. There are some interesting things being done in the comic format these days, and the medium is getting more respect every year. We have a pretty good sized collection at my library, and we're constantly adding more. Here are my personal favorites.

1. The Preacher series

An amazing series with a combination of action, romance, friendship, vampires, religion, and angels. It probably offends as many people as it fascinates. Full of violence, vulgarity, and ideas that would be sacrilegious to a lot of people. I loved whole nine-volume span.

2. The Sandman series

Another long series, written by a great writer (Neil Gaiman) with a lot of mythology thrown in.

3. 30 Days of Night

Vampires in Alaska. The art was so different from anything I had seen before and just wonderful.

4. The Sojourn series

One of the lines from Crossgen that was cancelled about a year or so ago. The story was unfinished at four volumes but had amazing, full-color art and a great story about a female archer who's family was killed and who went searching for revenge.

5. V for Vendetta

One of the amazing things about this book by Alan Moore was that you never see V's face. He always wears a mask and I enjoyed the mystery of his character.

6. The Red Star series

A fictionalized story of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979, but so much more than that. I love the military viewpoint, the absolutely amazing art, and the injection of sorcery into a modern setting.

7. The Sin City series

Gritty and violent, populated with a huge cast of characters. The basic black and white art with just a few touches of color makes the story itself the most important thing in this series. I thought the movie was great and an excellent adaptation of the first three books.

8. The Ruse series

Ruse was another Crossgen series. It has a connection to Sojourn (all of the Crossgen stories are connected), but you don't need to read all of the stories to understand what is going on. Part supernatural story and part detective story, Ruse is set in Victorian England, with a Sherlock Holmes type of detective and a female assistant.

9. Road to Perdition

I saw the movie before I read the graphic novel, but the book itself was amazing in its own right. It was very different than any of the graphic novels I'd read up to that point, and I enjoyed the Depression-era gangster setting.

10. Blankets

A huge book that tells a semi-autobiographical tale about a young man's rough childhood, and family, friendship, and first love.
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Avid Reader said...

After watching Sin City, I went and bought the series and loved it. I find them fascinating. THANK YOU for giving me someplace to start with graphic novels because this is a new interest for me.


meljean said...

I love all these, except for the Alaskan vampire one -- I hadn't even seen that in my local CBS. I was soooo sad to see Sojourn go -- one of the best stories out there, I thought.

McVane said...

Sweet! I'm sure 30 DAYS OF NIGHT was made into film. Oh, no, it's not. It's in the pipeline.
Thanks for the fab post. I'm having a hankering to read some graphic novels now. :)

Marjorie said...

I would also suggest Y: The Last Man as an excellent comic book series.

Nicole said...

Great post. I'd read it when you first posted it, but had to thank you now since I just realized a bunch of these are at my library, so I can try them out.