This One Summer. Mariko Tamaki. First Second. 2014. ISBN: 9781626720947
This was great. The classic summer vacation rife with expectation that somehow manages to simultaneously fall short and yet exceed one’s hopes for the experience. I don’t think this book could have been improved. It’s a great coming-of-age story for middle-graders, but it’s also timeless in its feel, and adults would enjoy it, too.I loved how the story ended on a hopeful note, but things hadn’t wrapped up. Life is like that. I also really enjoyed the subtle illustrations and the amazing blue color palette. Everything felt washed out and carried a sense of nostalgia about it without seeming trite. Touched on a lot of great topics for kids between the ages of elementary school and high school. It’s an uncertain time, and it’s hard to know what you think about things. This author and illustrator really got this story.
For grades 7 to 9

This One Summer. Mariko Tamaki. First Second. 2014. ISBN: 9781626720947

This was great. The classic summer vacation rife with expectation that somehow manages to simultaneously fall short and yet exceed one’s hopes for the experience. I don’t think this book could have been improved. It’s a great coming-of-age story for middle-graders, but it’s also timeless in its feel, and adults would enjoy it, too.

I loved how the story ended on a hopeful note, but things hadn’t wrapped up. Life is like that. I also really enjoyed the subtle illustrations and the amazing blue color palette. Everything felt washed out and carried a sense of nostalgia about it without seeming trite. Touched on a lot of great topics for kids between the ages of elementary school and high school. It’s an uncertain time, and it’s hard to know what you think about things. This author and illustrator really got this story.

For grades 7 to 9

fantagraphics
fantagraphics:

There are few greater joys in life than being able to revisit the stories of one’s childhood. Except, perhaps, getting to share them with others in a cute, fun-sized book!
Charles M. Schulz's Peanuts strips are a cornerstone of American culture, and his beloved characters, including Snoopy, Woodstock, Charlie Brown, Linus, and Lucy remain household names to this day. In our latest pocket-sized Peanuts gift book, Waiting for the Great Pumpkin, we’ve collected those Halloween-themed strips revolving around Linus’ unshakeable belief in, and proselytizing of, the Great Pumpkin — a mysterious figure who rises from pumpkin patches every Halloween to bring presents to good kids.
Read our 13-page (1.1 MB) excerpt and, while you’re at it, avoid the fall rush and pre-order your copy now!

fantagraphics:

There are few greater joys in life than being able to revisit the stories of one’s childhood. Except, perhaps, getting to share them with others in a cute, fun-sized book!

Charles M. Schulz's Peanuts strips are a cornerstone of American culture, and his beloved characters, including Snoopy, Woodstock, Charlie Brown, Linus, and Lucy remain household names to this day. In our latest pocket-sized Peanuts gift book, Waiting for the Great Pumpkin, we’ve collected those Halloween-themed strips revolving around Linus’ unshakeable belief in, and proselytizing of, the Great Pumpkin — a mysterious figure who rises from pumpkin patches every Halloween to bring presents to good kids.

Read our 13-page (1.1 MB) excerpt and, while you’re at it, avoid the fall rush and pre-order your copy now!

Bandette: Presto! (Vol. 1). Tobin and Coover. Dark Horse Comics. 2014. ISBN: 9781616552794
This was awesome! Best comic I’ve read so far that was published this year. Bandette is fearless, funny and loves the uncertainty of life. She finds joy in this uncertainty and takes risks that would make the greatest daredevils proud. This was a Web comic that was compiled into a single volume and won an Eisner award. It’s great. Bandette is a vigilante who sometimes work with and against the police. Set in France, readers can get a cursory knowledge of the local scene that adds just enough flavor to the story. I loved the tone and style, which is very much tongue in cheek and also ironic. There are funny asides from Bandette and also cool retro “zaps” and “kapows” drawn throughout. Very mod, very 1960s, very cool.

Bandette: Presto! (Vol. 1). Tobin and Coover. Dark Horse Comics. 2014. ISBN: 9781616552794

This was awesome! Best comic I’ve read so far that was published this year. Bandette is fearless, funny and loves the uncertainty of life. She finds joy in this uncertainty and takes risks that would make the greatest daredevils proud. This was a Web comic that was compiled into a single volume and won an Eisner award. It’s great. Bandette is a vigilante who sometimes work with and against the police. Set in France, readers can get a cursory knowledge of the local scene that adds just enough flavor to the story. I loved the tone and style, which is very much tongue in cheek and also ironic. There are funny asides from Bandette and also cool retro “zaps” and “kapows” drawn throughout. Very mod, very 1960s, very cool.

The Glorkian Warrior Delivers a Pizza. James Kochalka. First Second. 2014. ISBN: 9781596439177

Wacky, funny and cute, this book (first in a series) tells the story of the lovable but dim Glorkian warrior and his smarter but much-ignored sidekick, a jetpack. The story takes a few pages to kick into gear, but once it gets going, kids will laugh at the silly antics of this cast of characters. Looking forward to the next one. Probably best for Grades 1 to 4.

The Glorkian Warrior Delivers a Pizza. James Kochalka. First Second. 2014. ISBN: 9781596439177

Wacky, funny and cute, this book (first in a series) tells the story of the lovable but dim Glorkian warrior and his smarter but much-ignored sidekick, a jetpack. The story takes a few pages to kick into gear, but once it gets going, kids will laugh at the silly antics of this cast of characters. Looking forward to the next one. Probably best for Grades 1 to 4.

Gaijin: American Prisoner of War. Matt Faulkner. Disney-Hyperion. 2014. ISBN: 9781423137351.
This was an excellent historical fiction graphic novel about the little-known Japanese American internment camps that existed in America during World War Two. The government forced Japanese Americans into these camps due to paranoia, racism and other unsavory aspects of society that existed during this time (and that still do). Gaijin means outsider in Japanese, and this reflects the main character’s status as an outsider in his own country and among his own people, the Japanese, who also did not trust Koji, because he was half-Japanese. Accompanied to the camp by his white mother, who refused to surrender him to the camp alone, Koji deals with all the typical problems associated with growing up. These issues are heightened in this story.
The illustrations were my favorite aspect of the book, which used a color palette that alternated between various browns and explosive reds and oranges. I also liked the large text, which lent a real sense of urgency to the story. There is some good backmatter, and opportunities for classroom activities are abundant. Cool. 

Gaijin: American Prisoner of War. Matt Faulkner. Disney-Hyperion. 2014. ISBN: 9781423137351.

This was an excellent historical fiction graphic novel about the little-known Japanese American internment camps that existed in America during World War Two. The government forced Japanese Americans into these camps due to paranoia, racism and other unsavory aspects of society that existed during this time (and that still do). Gaijin means outsider in Japanese, and this reflects the main character’s status as an outsider in his own country and among his own people, the Japanese, who also did not trust Koji, because he was half-Japanese. Accompanied to the camp by his white mother, who refused to surrender him to the camp alone, Koji deals with all the typical problems associated with growing up. These issues are heightened in this story.

The illustrations were my favorite aspect of the book, which used a color palette that alternated between various browns and explosive reds and oranges. I also liked the large text, which lent a real sense of urgency to the story. There is some good backmatter, and opportunities for classroom activities are abundant. Cool. 

comixology

comixology:

Happy Memorial Day Everyone! 

We’re kicking off the unofficial beginning of Summer with a bang and loading you up with 20 free comics to fill up your Summer Reading List! 

Everyday for the next 20 days, we’re making a different comic available to download absolutely free! Just make sure to follow this tumblr, or check our Summer Reading List page to see what we’re giving away. 

If emails are more of your thing, you can sign up for daily reminders sent straight to your inbox by signing up for daily alerts right here.

The first book we’re giving away is: Detective Comics #871

"The Black Mirror" part 1! Writer Scott Snyder (AMERICAN VAMPIRE) joins DETECTIVE COMICS! A series of brutal murders pushes Batman’s detective skills to the limit and forces him to confront one of Gotham City’s oldest evils. Plus, when a figure from the past returns to Gotham, Jim Gordon must face some of his darkest demons.

Check back here tomorrow for another free comic!